The Jeep Wrangler has been a staple since the 80’s when its first generation came about. Since then this Jeep, which has been linked to ties from WWII production, has come a long way and is in its 4th generation currently. Even though American Motor Corporation and Chrysler have never given direct confirmation that the Jeep Wrangler stems from the Civilian Jeeps produced by Willy’s Kaiser Jeep and AMC after the WWII Jeep, it is impossible to not grasp how many similarities there are between the two. While the Wrangler series was redesigned to be more user friendly on the road with day to day drivers, the Wrangler also has a separate body and frame, with removable doors, a tapering nose design, removable hard or soft tops and even more similarities that tie to the WWII CJ Jeeps. This stems into the first generation of production of the Jeep Wrangler.
Generation 1: 1986- 1995 (YJ)
This was the first roll out of the Jeep Wrangler and it had a strong resemblance to the Jeep CJ-7 that had been discontinued. The Wrangler was first announced at the Chicago Auto Show. When introduced in 1986 the Wrangler was under the control of Renault and then Chrysler became the new owner in 1987 all the while being developed by American Motors Corporation. The Wrangler did have some differences from the Jeep CJ-7 such rectangular headlamps, a wider track, more comfort and better safety features.
Generation 2: 1996- 2005 (TJ)
As the 2nd generation was introduced, the Wrangler brought back the round headlamps that the previous generation had changed. This gives the 2nd generation a classic feel of the Jeep CJ-7. This generation of Wrangler TJ’s was also the start of the automatic shifter being relocated to the floor and all Wranglers began coming with a coil-spring instead of the previous leaf-spring suspension. This generation also got an Unlimited trim introduced in 2004.
Generation 3: 2006- 2016 (JK)
This generation was developed under Daimler Chrysler and was the first Wrangler model that was a clean-sheet design. There was the introduction of power windows, remote powered door locks and a navigation system. While the Wrangler was 2-door only in the past generations, this one included an Unlimited trim that was a 4-door option and gave a lot more room to the consumer. To come down the line would be more 4-door options due to its popularity with this Unlimited release in the 3rd generation.
In 2008 was the release of the range extended electric 4-door. This was giving a 40 mile range before the gas kicked in and supplied extra energy. An innovative design to assist in the future of electric cars that has become an increasingly popular item.
In 2011 Jeep partnered with Activision for the 2nd time and came out with a special edition based on the Wrangler Rubicon that was known as Modern Warfare 3. This special edition was themed with a Modern Warfare 3 theme (hence the name) on the interior and exterior for this Jeep.
Generation 4: 2017- current (JL)
This generation which introduced the JL came in hot with a lot of upgraded features. These features included redesigned 8-speed automatic transmission, additional power to the V6 engine, back-up camera, a modern interior upgraded design among more.
2021 saw the Jeep come out with the plug-in hybrid which was dubbed the Wrangler 4xe. The hybrid Wrangler model has approximately 25 miles of all electric range. This same year the Rubicon 392 was released which was the most powerful Wrangler JL to ever come out. It harnessed 470 HP accompanied by a 6.4L Hemi V8. Talk about vroom, vroom…
The Wrangler has come a long way from the former 80’s productions based off of WWII Jeeps. These Jeeps have become household names and loved by many consumers. It has won many awards and accolades such as Best Resale Value and 4x4 of the year award to name a few, and throughout the years has never failed to bring joy to those that drive them.