On Monday, July 13th, 2020, Ford revealed its new SUV, the 2021 Ford Bronco. It was set to be a big day for the American car manufacturer – or so most off-road car enthusiasts thought. Hours before the Bronco’s launch, Jeep threw down the gauntlet in a move surprising many. This SUV-focused and off-road division of Fiat Chrysler surprised the world with the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept.
The concept had fans worldwide ecstatic as this is only Jeep’s second Wrangler with a V8 engine under the hood, with the first releasing in 1981. While the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept‘s engine was expected to purr at 450 horsepower with a torque of 450 lb-ft, the 2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 has 470 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque.
The question that we’re all asking ourselves is, does its powerful operation, off-road capability, and endless personality justify its near $80,000 price tag?
2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport specs
The 2022 Jeep Wrangler of the base Sport trim variety is a blank page that owners can creatively accentuate with an aftermarket kit. Its manual windows alone speak of its rudimentary nature. It has 17″ by 7.5″ rear and front steel wheels that add to the Sport’s outgoing temperament. The car’s black trim goes all the way around its two (or four) doors.
It has all the power necessary for your countryside adventures thanks to its 3.6-liter V6 engine that runs on regular unleaded gas. It outputs 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque and can move from 0 to 60 mph in 6.1 seconds, as reported by Car and Driver. The 2022 Wrangler Sport has a maximum towing capacity of 2,000 pounds. Controlling this much power across all kinds of terrain is easy due to the car’s six-speed manual transmission. The EPA has its fuel economy at 25 mpg along the highway, 17 mpg in the city, and 20 mpg combined.
If you’re gliding down open stretches of road in the woods, along the beach, or in the country, then the Sport’s removable roof and doors are a convenient feature. The cloth upholstery on the bucket seats is another standard feature for the 2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport baseline trim. It’s a weekend toy that can be yours for around $33,595.
2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392
The 2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 is a revelation. MotorTrend reports that it’s already been crowned the four-wheeler SUV of the year. Still, is it deserving of its nearly $80,000 buying price? Let’s find out. Its exterior design is something to write home about. Its steel front bumper and the power dome hood are visually dominant. It has a rugged, muscular look thanks to its 35″ tires and its beadlock-capable wheels.
The car’s most out-there feature is the 6.4-liter HEMI V8 engine. It displaces 392 cubic inches with a torque of 470 lb-ft. Its horsepower at 6000 rpm (revolutions per minute) is 470. The Wrangler Rubicon 392’s massive engine is backed by an eight-speed automatic transmission. When you need traction, you can utilize the full-time 4WD (four-wheel drive). This roughly 5,100-pound ride moves from 0 to 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds, according to Car Buzz, and has a decent towing power of 3,500 pounds.
If the environment could talk, it probably wouldn’t have a lot of good things to say about the 2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392’s fuel economy. Its ratings from the EPA are 17 mpg on the highway, 13 mpg in the city, and a combined figure of 14 mpg. The manually-adjustable seats are comfortable, which you can attribute to the model’s leather surfaces.
The 2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport is a decent enough SUV considering it does the bare minimum. However, the Rubicon 392 is a different animal. It beats the former in acceleration, engine power, and comfort of its interiors, although the Sport has better fuel economy due to its less overpowered engine.
The 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor is its closest rival
Jeep and Ford are always trying to get the drop on each other with every new release. Ford’s answer to the 2022 Rubicon 392 comes in the form of the 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor. The way the front grille’s design melds with the distinctive amber lighting system is a thing of beauty. Its flared fenders are well raised over this SUV’s 37″ wheels, making movement over rocky, muddy, or sandy terrain easier.
It has a 3.0-liter V6 engine that delivers 415 lb-ft of torque and over 400 horsepower. According to Ford, this vehicle can take on any terrain as its four-wheel-drive-system gels well with the Raptor’s engine and 10-speed automatic transmission system. While the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 beats the Bronco Raptor in terms of power, it has nothing on the Ford SUV’s towing capacity, which is 4,500 pounds.
The Bronco Raptor’s interior setup and dimensions are similar to its cousin, the regular Bronco. This means rubber flooring, overhead auxiliary toggles, and vinyl upholstery. One can upgrade to leather-trimmed seats as well. Inverse reports that while the Bronco Raptor’s EPA ratings aren’t out yet, this off-roader is expected to have a slightly better fuel economy than the Wrangler 392.
Its starting price is $69,995 – around $10,000 cheaper than the 2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392. While the price difference is significant, it’s all about what you need from your SUV. The Bronco Raptor can tow more and has a better transmission system, but the Wrangler 392 is more powerful.