2018 Jeep Wrangler made its debut in the USA in late 2017…
It all started when the USA decided to enter World War II and asked auto manufacturers to come up with a four-wheel-drive reconnaissance car. Out of the 135 companies contacted, only two responded. These were American Bantam Car Company and Willys-Overland. Finally, Bantam Car Company’s design was chosen but, American Army thought it would not be able to supply the required numbers due to the size of the company. Thus, the designs were shared with Willys-Overland and Ford for further improvements and prototype development. Finally, Willys-Overland’s designs were finalised and this led to the first-ever Jeep taking shape as an army vehicle.
After the war, Willys-Overland went on to produce the famous CJ or “Civilian Jeep” and copyrighted the Jeep name. The CJ saw various iterations over the years till 1986 when the first generation Wrangler was unveiled. Though Jeep never agreed, Wrangler is largely accepted as a successor and current version of the “CJ”.
Jeep, though was present in India through Mahindra, officially came here just a couple of years ago. They started their operations by offering Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler as CBU’s and then launched the locally made Compass. Currently, the Wrangler on offer in India is the older generation one and the all-new 2018 one is supposed to be coming to us in the second half of this year.
To spice the story up, we have got hold of pictures of completely undisguised Jeep Wrangler in both 3 and 5 door versions being imported into India. These were shared with us by a reader and a good friend who happened to bump into these at the Mumbai airport while they were being unloaded from a plane. Both of these are the right-hand drive versions. What does Jeep want to do with these, test or showcase, we do not know. Notably, Jeep only offers the unlimited or 5 door version of Wrangler in India currently. Does the presence of a 3 door one hint at Jeep thinking of introducing it here, we have to wait and watch.
Since we already are on the topic and also expect the new Wrangler to be launched in India very soon, let’s quickly go over the updates it has received over the previous model:
2018 Jeep Wrangler Exteriors:
- A tweaked grille having the outermost slats curving in with the headlights.
- Larger full LED headlights.
- LED DRL’s placed in the fenders.
- Slight changes in the glass area on the side with a lower belt line.
- Vents on the aft of the front fenders.
- Larger tail lamps.
- Larger rear glass.
- Spare tyre being placed little lower than before for better visibility.
- A fold-down windscreen which is comparatively much easy to fold due to the reduction in the number of bolts to be undone.
- New soft and hard top options which are much more easy to remove and retract.
2018 Jeep Wrangler Interiors:
- New 7 inch MID in the instrument cluster.
- Soft touch dashboard with aluminium and plastic bits.
- Dual zone climate control.
- Dedicated air vents for the second row.
- Bigger centre storage area.
- Three screen size options for infotainment system: 3, 5 and 8.4 inches.
- Android Auto and Apple Car Play on the 8.4-inch infotainment system.
- Multiple 12V and USB ports across the cabin.
- Keyless entry & push button start.
- Spare wheel mounted reverse camera.
2018 Jeep Wrangler Engine & Transmission
The new Jeep Wrangler will be available with the following engine options:
- 3.6L V6 petrol producing 285hp and 353Nm torque.
- 2.0L 4-cyl turbo petrol producing 270hp and 400Nm torque.
- 2.2-litre 4-cyl turbo diesel producing 197hp and 450Nm torque.
- 3.0-litre V6 turbo diesel producing 240hp and 570Nm torque.
The 3.6L V6 turbo diesel engine is the same one being offered on the Grand Cherokee currently. We expect the two four-cylinder engines will be the one coming to us as these are introduced keeping the international markets in consideration. The new Wrangler comes equipped with an 8 speed automatic and a 6-speed manual gearbox. The car will be on offered in India as a CBU, similar to the current model, and is expected to be launched in coming months.