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Shopping for a Jeep Wrangler can be overwhelming. This iconic SUV offers various trim levels, options, and accessories. You also might’ve heard of the Wrangler Unlimited, though it’s hard to imagine an unlimited model on top of all the other options. If you’re considering this rugged off-roader, knowing the difference between the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited and the standard Wrangler is a good place to start.

How the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited fits into the Wrangler timeline

A red 2023 Jeep Wrangler small SUV is driving through water.
The 2023 Jeep Wrangler | Jeep

The Jeep Wrangler has a rich history that dates back to World War II when the U.S. military commissioned the production of a light all-terrain vehicle. After the war, Jeep introduced the CJ (Civilian Jeep), which became popular among farmers, ranchers, and outdoor enthusiasts.

In 1986, the CJ was replaced by the first-generation Jeep Wrangler (YJ). This two-door SUV offered an updated suspension and a new square headlight design. More than a decade later, in 1997, the second-generation Wrangler (TJ) debuted with a new coil-spring suspension and round headlights recalling the original Jeep design.

The third-generation Wrangler (JK) came out in 2007. It offered a wider range of features and options. That’s also where the Wrangler Unlimited enters the timeline. The fourth-generation Wrangler (JL) debuted in 2018 with new engine options, updated styling, and better off-road manners, reports.

Through the decades, the Jeep Wrangler has retained its boxy styling and reputation as a rough-and-ready off-roader. It boasts excellent approach and departure angles, impressive ground clearance, and four-wheel-drive capabilities. More than that, it’s American royalty, loved by outdoor adventurers and off-roading fans alike.

How is the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited different from the Wrangler?

While the standard Wrangler is a two-door SUV, the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited is a four-door version of the classic. The Unlimited also provides more cargo space, more passenger room, and improved comfort without sacrificing its off-roading chops.

Compared to the standard Wrangler, the Unlimited is more practical and versatile for families and drivers needing more space for gear. In addition, Unlimited models have a longer wheelbase, more room for backseat riders, and an additional set of doors that greatly improves accessibility.

The Wrangler Unlimited is available in various trims — including Sport, Sport 5, Sahara, and Rubicon — with various engine options and an array of customization options. Even so, it retains the Wrangler’s iconic design and beloved off-roading capabilities, including its generous ground clearance, approach and departure angles, and 4WD prowess.

However, Unlimited models cost more than the two-door Wrangler. Also, the four-door model might not be the ideal choice for drivers prioritizing maximum off-road capabilities or those who prefer the original two-door Wrangler’s design and configuration.

Overall, the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited is a practical and versatile version of the original, offering increased passenger and cargo space while providing off-road capabilities.

What’s the price difference?

The price difference between a Jeep Wrangler and a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited depends on the trim level and selected options. Generally, the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited has a higher MSRP than the two-door Wrangler due to its larger size, extra set of doors, and increased cargo and passenger space.

The starting MSRP for a two-door 2023 Jeep Wrangler Sport is $31,195. And the starting MSRP for a 2023 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport is $35,195, according to Jeep. That’s a $4,000 difference.

Exact pricing varies depending on the model, trim level, and options.


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