Take note, because that is how you do a post, my friends! Well done.Okay, I'm writing this post because I think this will be useful to any serious Jeep diesel potential customers. I finally found a Diesel wrangler at a dealership. I have been looking for a diesel wrangler to test drive, to personally see if what has been reported on the blog/vlogs/magazines to be true or not. Also, to experience if the so called magazine/online vlogs experts on cars/trucks were telling the truth or embellishing or just making stuff up.
So, everyone understands, I'm not an expert, I am a regular guy who owns a 2014 Jeep Wrangler JK, who plans on purchasing a diesel wrangler. I also sell diesel motors, but that doesn't make me an expert. It does however make me very skeptical of so called experts and people with strong opinions.
I found a Diesel Jeep Wrangler Rubicon at a Chicago area dealership. The day that I test drove, it was 27-29 degrees and sunny. The dealership is in an urban area with frequent stop and go traffic, and city type driving and access to an expressway. Chicago is roughly 600 feet above sea level. The dealership was kind enough to allow me to inspect, run, listen to this diesel and then test drive this diesel wrangler for well over an hour and a half.
This is my impressions;
Noise - At idle the motor noise was quiet. I listened to the noise while standing at the hood, with the hood open and closed, and at the exhaust pipe. I also sat in the drivers seat, front and rear passenger seats, and found the noise to be no louder than my 3.6 ltr Pentastar motor. But, it clearly sounds like a diesel, a quiet one. While driving it, I noticed that it was no louder than my current Jeep while having the windows up, but the only difference is that it sounds like a diesel. With the windows down while driving, and with the wind noise the diesel motor clatter disappears, just the as my gas Wrangler. This surprised me, because of what I have watched and read from other reviews they implied that it was louder than the gas Jeep Wrangler. I guess if you are looking to have this diesel motor sound the same as a gas motor, then buy the 3.6 ltr. or 2 ltr. turbo. gas motor, but if you are worried about noise, to me they both make equal amount of noise. This was not a scientific study and I didn't use a calibrated sound level meter. So, take it for what it's worth...
Driving - The power of the motor and the smoothness of the 8 speed transmission was impressive., much better than my JK 3.6 Pentastar. When comparing the diesel JL to a 3.6 ltr. JL or a 2 ltr. turbo JL, again, I believe there is a noticeable difference between the power (torque) of the diesel. I noticed this while I was doing stop and go traffic and while on the highway, and this is a welcome difference. There was no diesel lag or turbo lag, it was power when I wanted it.
Mileage - I drove over 40 miles. You will notice in the picture that my trip mileage was 20.6, but I reset the trip computer twice to see if there would be a change with the MPG, so that's why the trip and my stated miles don't add up. There is a few things I'd like to mention before I give you the average MPG, and it has to do with my driving habits. I'm an average driver. I typically drive 5-7 mph over the speed limit and I keep up with traffic. I don't race to the next stop light or stop sign, and I'm not out make it to the next destination in record time. I drive a Jeep Wrangler... This said, my sustained average mpg was 32.4. Yes, 32.4 MPG! This was real word driving on city streets, with stop and go traffic, along with 21 miles of highway driving, at highway speeds (5-7 mph over). IMPRESSIVE!!! Note; the MPG was off of the on board vehicle computer and not me calculating it.
Cost - The list price of the diesel motor is $4,000 more than the gas 3.6 Pentastar, and the transmission is less $750 than the trans paired with the 3.6 Pentastar, costing $3,250 more to go to the diesel (but, NO one pays list price). Note: This does not take into account the manual trans, this is motor for motor and automatic trans for automatic trans (most wranglers are sold and built with automatic transmissions (if anyone has REAL numbers of how many automatics vs. manual transmissions please post, because I tried finding the exact numbers but couldn't))
In summary, noise of diesel is the same or no change + power (torque) + real world MPG (32.4 mpg) = Impressed