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The Jeep Wrangler has long been a favorite for off-road SUV enthusiasts – but not all Wranglers are equal. In fact, the 2018 Jeep Wrangler, in particular, is one of the best years in the nameplate’s history. There are a few important reasons why. 

Jeep redesigned the 2018 Wrangler from the ground up 

A red 2018 Jeep Wrangler shows its off-road performance at a press demonstration. The 2018 model was one of the best years for the Jeep Wrangler.
2018 Jeep Wrangler | Scott Olson via Getty Images

At the time, the 2018 Jeep Wrangler came with the model’s first complete redesign in a decade, adding a plethora of aesthetic and technical updates over the outgoing model. 

The wholly redesigned Wrangler introduced in 2018 would be known as the “JL” generation. Although it looked similar to the outgoing Wrangler JK, the Wrangler JL was 100 percent new from top to bottom. 

It was a big deal at the time. Jeep had only redesigned the Wrangler two other times in its three-decade history. The result of the redesign was the most comfortable, capable, and versatile Wrangler Jeep ever produced. 

Finally, the Wrangler had an optional turbocharged engine 

The 2018 Jeep Wrangler was the first model year with a turbocharged engine. 

Unsurprisingly, Jeep kept the familiar 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 as the base powertrain. But it also added an optional 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged unit. According to Car and Driver, that engine produces 270 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque while yielding up to 25 mpg highway in two-door models. It boosted both power and efficiency over the base V6.  

The updated platform and chassis offer superior on-road comfort and handling 

The 2018 Wrangler got an entirely new frame geometry and chassis design that vastly improved its comfort and handling on pavement. This update was a smart move by Jeep – the Wrangler has always been notorious for its jostling, uncomfortable on-road behavior.  

The Wrangler JL had all-new geometry to help even out its handling and ride quality. Perhaps more importantly, it switched from the old model’s leaf spring suspension to a more sophisticated coil spring suspension system. The 2018 Wrangler’s solid axles still limited its on-road comfort, but the switch to coils significantly improved its overall ride quality. 

New technology gave the 2018 Wrangler a dose of modernity 

Jeep added a slew of new tech features to the 2018 Wrangler that helped it leap forward into the modern automotive landscape. 

For the first time, all new Wrangler models came with touchscreen infotainment displays featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It also had optional active safety features like blind spot warning and rear cross-traffic alert. 

These may seem like simple features to the modern driver. Still, they were significant upgrades for a model famous for being old school. 

Is the 2018 Jeep Wrangler worth it?

The 2018 Jeep Wrangler offered a much better overall package than the model years that came before it. From its improved ride quality to its updated technology, the redesigned Wrangler JL started an exciting new chapter for the industry’s benchmark off-road SUV. If you’re looking to get a Wrangler of your own, 2018 is a great model year to start with. 


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