Jeep Newbie - need advice on JL purchase

RussJeep1

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I'd do without the leather interior. Cloth may not only be better given the last place you're taking this rig to is the mall, but the dollar savings can go into future things you'll want to add to your rig.

Trust me--you're initial purchase features are only the beginning of what you'll want for this toy.

You talked about not knowing what you don't know. Google, if you haven't, "Wrangler Camping Gear."

By the time you're done with that internet search you may end up getting a Sport S seeing all the things you want to buy for your rig after purchase with the saved funds

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WranglerJLU4Greg

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Peter,

You are getting a lot of good suggestions for things to think about, as I have gotten from Forum members with my selection of a JLU. I hope you are writing these suggestions down on paper so you can use them as you continue your research. Over time, you will begin to see your JL/JLU take form, and can develop a strategy that is right for you. I have done that for myself, and getting close to knowing what I want to order.

I define Strategy as: The determination of goals and objectives, the adoption of courses of action, and the allocation of resources in order to achieve the goal.

The JL Wrangler Forum is an excellent group of Jeep owners. Good Luck!
 

Jrbrannan

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I drive the absolute base model of the JLU and found that to be completely capable in horrid road conditions here in the northeast. In fact I drove my Jeep home during a snowstorm. It was effortless.

Next day I took it on 45+ degree snow and mud trail with sharp turns and randomly scattered boulders hidden under the snow. Again, I went through that no problem.

Keep on mind I have stock tires outfitted with seasonal tires - mounted on stock axels with no lift kit. I also have the 8 speed transmission but it has the option to control it manually.

Lastly, if you are the kind of person where you know you are going to aftermarket the crap out of your vehicle, Rubicon is a waste of money in my very humble opinion. I know I will be able to get accessories for my meger base unit - that will be as good or superior to what Jeep privides stock for the Rube.

Good luck with your search!

-J
The key here is what you plan on doing with the Jeep. If you are going to wheel it with 35-37" tires then a Rubicon could actually save you money because you MIGHT not have to re-gear or upgrade the front axle. There is no doubt that a stock JL or JLU is a beast off-road in the stock form but the Rubicon is even more of an upgrade over previous years IMHO versus the Sport based on the standard Dana 35 axles if you do not get the anti spin rear dif, and the high line fender flares. Again it all depends on what you plan on doing with it, I will not be wheeling stupid hard like I use to but when the stock 33's are worn out I will be putting a small lift and 35's, or 37's on it and will be able to take my JLUR anywhere I want.

At the end of the day OP it comes down to trying to figure out what you are wanting your Jeep to become and pricing that out and determining how much work you want to do to it down the road. The Rubicon is a rock solid "base" platform.

My two cents on some of the list- I agree that you could probably ditch the leather, but I would also ditch the passive entry system if you plan on sleeping in the Jeep. Could that not cause issues with trying to keep the Jeep locked while inside sleeping? Maybe not, but it seems like an un-needed extra if it is truly about getting out and enjoying nature.

There will be plenty of cargo management systems that will come out, and my guess be better than factory system.

One thing to consider about the Stick vs. Auto. It really depends on the kind of wheeling you are doing. This is not like the olden days where an auto took what seemed like 45 seconds to shift and never seemed to be in the right gear. Stick is a more simple design and one can argue more "bulletproof" but most every professional crawler or off road driver has an auto now. I am not buying or selling the idea just saying consider the auto as well, you might be surprised. When I drove my sister-in-law's 2018 JK, I out of habit "dug" my left foot for the clutch at start up every time, but after wheeling it a couple times I quickly came to enjoy the worry free nature of the old 5 speed.

Lastly I will echo what many people have said, the 4 door will get you 99.9% of places the 2 door will, so I would not limit the 4 door because you are worried that it will not fit somewhere. Consider that 75% of the JK's were unlimited models and they go just as many places as the older Jeeps. Best piece of advice would be to drive a 2 door and 4 door back to back. Even if they are the JK's it will give you a since of size and ride between the two. BTW the ride of the JLU's (Can't speak to the JL's) is a HUGE upgrade over the JKU.
 

TCogs1

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Ugh, you’re making good arguments here ... really torn on this one.
I have a JLUR and I have done both, trailered and not trailered (with 5 folks out on the Rubicon for 4 days)… I am torn too... it really depends on the trails of interest.. if they are mild trails.. go JLRU.. it will do 99% of every trail a 2 door will do with more versatility. BUT if your like me and want more sport car kinda vibe.. 2 door can not be beat... A 3.6 in a 2 door is a hoot, if you can keep it light (softtop, etc)…

I know there is a lot a manual folks out there and I appreciate and I have run manuals for a long time (old guy here), BUT.. the auto used in manual mode is really fun... especially features like down hill decent control feature.. its awesome on super steep and near roll over stuff.. We recently had several JL's on a run and we did a slow race.. no touching the throttle, idle only, 4L, >30% hill climb, >35% decline.. auto aced this test with no issues, manual guys stalled and went too fast down..hill..

Personally, JL or JLRU with a modest mopar 2" lift, airbags, 37" sticky tires-bead locks, steel bumper group, winch, your set for 99% of the obstacles you will ever WANT to do... unless your the king of hammers crowd.. but that's rock buggy stuff, if your into that, don't get a jeep.

I have run the hardest trials in CA with zero winching and issues.. But its your rig, do as you do... both configs have pros and cons.. I have owned mine for a year... JLRU is great, but I think I want a 2 door still... recognizing I would give up space but gain more sporty driving experience.

And if you are a worry wort on MPG the diesel is coming... if you like slow - heavy rolling and can deal with turbo stuff.. that is a great option too..

The 3.6 with an auto in manual mode is a real hoot.. go try it in a 2 door with the top down.. if your like me.. you will be sold..

Hope that helps..

TC
 

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