How does the JL ride and drive compared to the JK?

Hogdreamer

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Tire pressure makes a world of difference in the JK and JL. Stock JLs are delivered with 38-40psi, and drive like crap. Lower the pressure to 28-32 and the ride is much improved.
I test drove a JKU in 2013 when I was looking to replace my 2002 Dodge Ram 1500. I found the ride to be too harsh, especially when comparing to my Ram which rode like a dream. Maybe the tire pressure on that JK was too high from the dealer?

Test drove a 2018 Jeep Wrangler JLUR and found the ride to be GREATLY improved. so much that I knew it would just be a matter of time before I purchased one.

Fast forward to 2021 and I finally decided it was time to replace the 2008 Jeep Liberty that I purchased in 2013 to take my Ram's place. I ended up buying a 2021 Sahara Altitude and love it's ride.

My tire pressure is high, 41 psi to 43 psi according to the onboard tire pressure system. Don't mind the ride at all but I'll bring them down to the recommended 36 psi and see how that feels.
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JeezAJeep

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Had a 2012 and now a 2021...big difference in everything...better ride, better gas mileage, much better sound with the upgraded Alpine in both, better handling and power. I am very happy....progress works well with the Wranglers...it kinda scares me...probably buy one every few years...all the best
 

Windshieldfarmer

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I genuinely don’t understand the complaints about Wrangler handling on the highway. While I’m not a speed demon, it doesn’t handle much differently than other vehicle at speed in my experience. I think a Wranglers shortcoming regarding ride quality is around town. Coming to stops often, taking a lot of turns, taking bumps or potholes, etc.
I’m not sure what you are accustomed to driving. I love my JL, but not because it drives all that great on the highway. My wife’s Ford Edge is mych easier to drive at speed...and my Tesla is way better than the Edge. The JL drives good for what it is.....a highly capable off-road rig.
 

Strommen95

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I’m not sure what you are accustomed to driving. I love my JL, but not because it drives all that great on the highway. My wife’s Ford Edge is mych easier to drive at speed...and my Tesla is way better than the Edge. The JL drives good for what it is.....a highly capable off-road rig.
What does "easier" mean in this context? I haven't owned a different vehicle in years now but when I drive my brothers CX5 the ride is different but easier isn't a word I'd use. I much prefer the handling of RWD in fact but that's just me. I routinely drive 200-300 miles a day in the Northeast. Usually with 1 hand on the wheel most of the day, steering is good and just don't see the complaints about highway handling.

The only complaint I'd make is the Jeep will start weaving on windy days and that's a PITA on the highway. If I lived in a windier area I would consider another vehicle.
 

quintyng

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Hello! I factory ordered a Sahara Altitude totally sight unseen without ever driving a JL. I drove my brother’s stock 4-door JK a handful of times and thought it was a pretty rough ride and it blew all over the road. Those who went from a JK to a JL, is the ride noticeably improved in the JL? I’m a little nervous coming from a new 4Runner and hoping the JL has a more comparable ride to that versus the JK. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
I just switched from a 2014 JKU Sahara to a 2021 JLU Sport S. Like everyone is saying…..waaaaaay smoother ride. My supervisor has a newer 4Runner and even he admitted the JL is a lot smoother than he expected. The 8-speed transmission is definitely a game changer. Enjoy!
 

Reinen

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What does "easier" mean in this context? I haven't owned a different vehicle in years now but when I drive my brothers CX5 the ride is different but easier isn't a word I'd use. I much prefer the handling of RWD in fact but that's just me. I routinely drive 200-300 miles a day in the Northeast. Usually with 1 hand on the wheel most of the day, steering is good and just don't see the complaints about highway handling.

The only complaint I'd make is the Jeep will start weaving on windy days and that's a PITA on the highway. If I lived in a windier area I would consider another vehicle.
It's all relative. For example, my previous Jeep was a '90 YJ. One of my first thoughts about the JL handling was OMG, it's so ROCK SOLID on the highway! My wife's first thought, who never owned a Jeep and has been driving Subarus & Hondas, was OMG, it's so WIGGLY on the highway!

It all depends on where you're coming from and what you're used to. It also makes me think if my wife ever drove my YJ on the highway she'd probably think she was going to die.
 

rikity

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I had a 2015 JK Rubicon since it was new, I also sell Jeeps so I've driven many of both versions. The JL is better in every way. We were skeptical about it before finding out what the changes were, the only thing that you could potentially say is better is the JK has a shorter wheel base. The transmission to me is the biggest improvement, it makes a huge difference in power and improves fuel economy. Also and this isnt a complete list by a long shot but these are my favorites:

1. The front 2 piece tops come off with only levers eliminating that long threaded screw that went through the roll bar.
2. All windows are larger to improve visibility
3. Rear wiper was re-located to the bottom of the window and the spare tire mount is lower for better rear view visibility.
4. Rear backup camera
5. Stronger Axle tubes
6. Updated radio/touchscreen 8.4" available - the 430n and 730n were both junk
7. Larger stock tires + fits up to 35" stock (rubicon)
8. Rear A/C vents
9. There is an actual roll cage that protects the front, the JK used the front window frame. The new design is way safer where the JK is not even acceptable.
 

PatrickM

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I went from a 2017 JKUR to a 2019 JLUR and the difference is quite simply staggering.
I saw a youtube review listing 50 … FIFTY - improvements….and I counted more.
the ride seems very much improved. Both have a 2.5” lift but I went from BFG KO2 35” Muds the BFG Ko2 A/Ts … that would have improved the ride anyway.
I had the steering damper changed under the recall, but it wasn’t an issue for mine.

I love this thing!
 

entropy

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Tire pressure makes a world of difference in the JK and JL. Stock JLs are delivered with 38-40psi, and drive like crap. Lower the pressure to 28-32 and the ride is much improved.
Thats way too low for the stock tires. I keep mine at 36~37 (cold) and it drives fine. That's what the manual says to keep them at. They come over 40 from the dealer, mine were at 42. At 28~32 the ride will be more comfortable but those tires are not gonna last very long. I am on falken M/T 33s.
 

entropy

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That is interesting. How can one make IFS worse than Live Axle on the highway? Sounds hard to do. Lol
It is relative. There are many factors that make a ride enjoyable or not, and it depends mostly on the driver. The SFA has never bothered me, but it does bother my wife. The taco and the 4 runner feel sluggish, and the 4runner has a lot of sway which might annoy people. Many people also don't enjoy driving a big car. Even though the taco is a small pickup, it is still a pickup. I find driving pickup trucks a terrible driving experience. So that's why we hear so many different opinions in the subject.

My JL was in for battery replacement a few months ago, and they gave me a renegade as a loaner for 2 days. What a huge pos. The thing is light af and rattles all over. I am sure many people will disagree with me, but my 2 door on a rubi suspension with M/T falkens drives better.
 

gato

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I see this thread evolved into other improvements vs JK in addition to ride/handling.

I'll mention the biggest improvement in comfort on the JLU over the JKU. Rear seats. The rear seat is now at a more comfortable and usual angle, vs the extremely vertical and down-right uncomfortable JKU rear seat back. There is also more leg room, more head room, a center arm-rest in some models.

Kids and I (in the rare instances one of the kids is driving) don't mind riding the back anymore.

Other than being a high c.g. tall vehicle, susceptible to x-winds, with somewhat imprecise steering, susceptible to bump steer, the JLU (particularly the higher trims) is a quite nice vehicle to ride in. The seats are superbly comfortable. Seating position and visibility are awesome (except rear - but there is a camera).

I actually quite enjoy long trips on it. Particularly the part where I can drive over the pot-holes and bumps in our decrepit roads with my 37" tires set at 30PSI with my long travel suspension.

Roads where I have to gingerly and slowly traverse with my Camaro 1LE, I simply bomb on my JLUR. That is awesome.
 

JAY1941

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The length and added width is substancial. The 8 speed at is a game changer. I have had 3 jks and 2 jls. The jl is nicer in almost every way IMO
 

entropy

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Great info, I didn’t know about the added rear vents or expansion of the roll cage! I have learned so much from you all on this forum!
Yeah man it is one of the best if not the best Jeep ever made for civilians. The JK was awesome that it made Jeep much more accesible and practical daily vehicle. But the JL made that way better and it improved on the off road capabilities quite a bit.

It is a great platform. Strong axels, both solid front and rear. Great ground clearance on all trims, solid engine options and a crazy capable auto transmission. This thing is gonna last and people are gonna build them up in the future.
 

Wraif

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Hello! I factory ordered a Sahara Altitude totally sight unseen without ever driving a JL. I drove my brother’s stock 4-door JK a handful of times and thought it was a pretty rough ride and it blew all over the road. Those who went from a JK to a JL, is the ride noticeably improved in the JL? I’m a little nervous coming from a new 4Runner and hoping the JL has a more comparable ride to that versus the JK. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
I came from a 2013 JK Rubicon to a 2019 JL Rubicon. The JL drives better than the stock JK, also better than my 2009 JKU, but not as good as my 2013 JK Rubicon once I had the Metalcloak lift installed. It also handled better through curves, even though it’s definitely not a sports car. That was hands down the best driving Wrangler/CJ that I’ve EVER driven. I can’t wait till I get the Metalcloak lift installed in the JL. Just remember, it’s a Jeep, if there’s something you don’t like you can change it, you have so many options. Stock, you’ll love it.
 
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