Seemingly Obsessed with Wranglers - But Have Never Owned One... Help!!

Tiger1

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Quick update- Turo rental was a success. Family had a blast and even my wife seemed to have fun in the wrangler. If were just her, she would gravitate towards smooth, quiet, and luxury, over rugged, loud, and bumpy - but the trip highlighted all the benefits of a wrangler. We were able to go places we couldn’t have in many other vehicles including up a ridge line road off the Blue Ridge parkway near Linville Falls in western NC.
Chris87114, sounds like we're just down the road from you (and I've still never been ducked!). We spend a lot of time in the western NC mountains in our Jeep. Tell your wife a quiet, luxury SUV can't make memories like this with the kids...
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chris87114

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Chris87114, sounds like we're just down the road from you (and I've still never been ducked!). We spend a lot of time in the western NC mountains in our Jeep. Tell your wife a quiet, luxury SUV can't make memories like this with the kids...
I love mountains. Lived out west in New Mexico / Colorado area, and PNW In Oregon for about a decade, and the mountains are my happy space. Had 4WD vehicles out there that I used to explore and go skiing/snowboarding, hiking, and mountain biking a lot.

It was easy for my wife to understand the appeal of the wrangler and excitement that the kids had when we were exploring this weekend.
 

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This was a great thread! I'm in a similar boat to the OP. I've wanted a more capable SUV for a long time, and the JL has really captured my attention. Currently driving a 2012 Accord, which only has 85K on it so there's a lot of life left in that car.

I've always found logic to end up in a more practical car. Passed on buying an '85 Broco while in high school (2003) because I needed a more practical car when commuting to college. Had a 2 door Explorer for several years. Adored it and ran that car until I went practical again with a Ford Edge. That car was terrible. Worst new car experience you could imagine as soon as the warranty expired. New Bronco looks amazing, but I won't trust a turbo Ford engine until they've been street tested.

We got a new house last year, and delayed our wedding until late this year (thanks covid). Once our finances settle after that we can hopefully take a real look at a new vehicle. My wife has a 4runner, so we have one larger more capable vehicle. If I was pulling the trigger today I'd be torn between a Willys and a 4runner Venture. But I'd rent a Jeep like others have advised. I know I'd prefer the Jeep for fun stuff, but I'd want to test it on the commute and grocery runs and stuff.
I did test drive my brother in laws Gladiator Rubicon. It made a GOOD case for the JL :)
 

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I assume you liked the Gladiator?
Yes, loved it. Even with the mud tires it wasn't overly loud. Had great fun factor. The pickup layout isn't for me, but it gave me good insight into the Pentastar and the interior fit and finish.
 

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I rented a wrangler on a vacation in Mexico years ago and enjoyed it, but it was just my wife and I before we were married. I didn't have kids then or a long commute. Life is a little different now. Our family car is a Honda Odyssey. Part of my ongoing desire with a Jeep is due to the impact that COVID has had on us feeling trapped at home a lot (I still go into work every day as an essential worker, but kids and wife are at the house all the time) and likely a bit of a mid-life crisis if I'm being honest. I had sporty cars and motorcycles earlier in life. There's no way I have enough time away from the family to enjoy those right now so a jeep seems like something that we could share as a family.
It is a great family fun convertible. I use to have motorcycles as well and decided to get the JL as the whole family could be together. It all started when I rented one on vacation and later another one in Moab. They are great and can be OK for mild commutes to work.
 

The Last Cowboy

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I know this is a Jeep site, but to be fair, the Ford turbo engines slated for the Bronco are well tested already. Both have been in use for years now. The 2.7 is used in F150s and the 2.3 has been used in Explorers, Rangers and Mustangs. Both are solid engines.

You can’t go wrong with any of the Wranglers engine options either. This is a good time to be shopping impractical 4x4s.
 

_olllllllo_

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Simple pleasures are hard to come by. Some guys want crazy expensive, complicated cars that are outrageously expensive to own and maintain. A Jeep is as much or more fun and often gets as much or more attention. Kids love them.

I remember as a kid going with my dad to look at both an FJ40 and an International Scout Traveller. I wanted him to get both, but the Scout was so cool with 4 captain's chairs. Funny that I still remember that 45 years later.

Get the Jeep. Make memories. Listen to the kids make plans about all the places y’all will go and who will get it when they turn 16.
My kids will convince kids to come over because they will get to ride in the Jeep .... and then I get to go pick the kids up because they want the ride in the Jeep, although sometimes they even want to see my kids.
 

WhiteJLUS

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OP, I owned a JK Sport with a somewhat cheaper lift kit on it and some budget 35" tires for about a year. It was a 2013, pretty barebones interior, soft top.

We have now had a 2019 JLUR for 2 years, ordered from the factory, 56k MSRP (paid 45k so don't look at the sticker too hard if ordering is at all in the cards for you). We basically ticked every box at the time. It's been lifted for basically its entire life and currently sits on 39" tires.

The JLUR is better in every single way (for us) than the JK. The interior is nicer, quieter, more user friendly. The exterior has some changes to the grill, headlights, fenders that really do stand out once you've grown used to being able to tell the difference. The factory LED lights on the JL are fantastic (the JK had halogens, so I can't comment on how good the JK LEDs are). Proximity key is awesome, the 8.4 Uconnect with android auto is awesome. The red dash on the rubicons is a really sweet touch, in my opinion.

Concerning the ride quality/steering, the JL was better from the factory, and is still better with the lift. I can't give you a stock/stock opinion unfortunately, but I can tell you that my JL with the Metalcloak 3.5 lift rides better than my friend's JKs with similar quality lifts and tire sizes.
 

The Last Cowboy

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There is one thing my JK did better. The hard top rear window stayed open when I would drive with just the roof panels off. The JLs rear window makes all kinds of noise if I do the same thing and it moves on bumps as if it wants to close. Also, when the JKs rear window was closed it was quiet. My JLs rear window seal sometimes makes creaky noises against the top of the tailgate.

That’s it. The JL is better in every other way.
 

RJE2

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Simple pleasures are hard to come by. Some guys want crazy expensive, complicated cars that are outrageously expensive to own and maintain. A Jeep is as much or more fun and often gets as much or more attention. Kids love them.

I remember as a kid going with my dad to look at both an FJ40 and an International Scout Traveller. I wanted him to get both, but the Scout was so cool with 4 captain's chairs. Funny that I still remember that 45 years later.

Get the Jeep. Make memories. Listen to the kids make plans about all the places y’all will go and who will get it when they turn 16.
both of my daughter are fighting over who will get the Jeep.
I don't think I will be giving it up.
 

rikity

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I've wanted a Jeep since I was able to drive, wasnt able to get one until I turned 25 and bought a brand new TJ in 1997. I loved it the entire 17 years I owned it, in the middle of that had 2 kids and started working for a Jeep dealer. Was hesitant to pay the $40k+ price tag, plus my credit was a little low, I bought a used Mustang after selling the TJ. Rebuilt my credit with that purchase over the next year and decided the Mustang wasnt for me and traded it for a 2015 Rubicon Unlimited. The new Jeep was great for fitting more gear and 3 more passengers that I didnt have when I bought the TJ originally. Drove that for 5 years and traded it a few months ago for a JL.

I've never regretted any of them, and each one I liked a little more than the last. I know in the Jeep clubs the guy with the newerJeep always gets crap from the old school Jeep guys, but frankly I really dont care what they think. I spend money on what I like.

My opinion in your case, buying an older Jeep really isnt going to help you much on whether you're going to like a JL. It looks very similar to the untrained eye, but they are completely different. If you do anything, get a used JL!
 

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They are impractical until you are out in the wilderness or driving around town on sunny day with top/doors off.

I couldnt live without my 2 door JL right now. I enjoy it so much we use it as our "suv". I carry 13~14 kayaks on it, mountain bikes, camping gear. Now we have a baby which means we need the rear bench. Ordered a hiker camper light offroad trailer. Problem solved!. And this is a 2 door JL. The reality is we just dont need a bigger car. When we go out kayaking or camping, all these families look at us all jealous!. And all those wives look at me, then at their husbands driving a boring subaru. ;).
we do have a comfy new Camry for grocery shopping, driving around town with the baby etc...
 

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Reading this thread I see a lot of posts that sound very familiar :)

Basically, for me a Jeep was just something I had wanted for quite awhile. Just always thought it would be cool to have all the versatility it provides. However, I spent the last 20 years or so in family life, raising kids and going from one family vehicle with third row seating to the next lol.

Well, the time finally came when it became practical for me to consider a Jeep again after a lot of year wanting one. Finally happened last year after quite a bit of obsessing myself and looking at pics, watching videos, and dealership visits.

I haven't got a single regret. I love driving something that doesn't look like every other SUV on the road. This vehicle has personality and I actually look forward to getting in it to drive anywhere.

And have to say the Jeep Waves with other Jeep owners always put a smile on my face :)
 
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chris87114

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We have now had a 2019 JLUR for 2 years, ordered from the factory, 56k MSRP (paid 45k so don't look at the sticker too hard if ordering is at all in the cards for you). We basically ticked every box at the time.
Seems you got an awesome deal! Good deals look to be ~11% off MSRP. Did you buy at the end of the model year or have some other method to get ~ 20% off?

$45K was the range I had thought it would be to get what I wanted when I originally started looking a couple years ago before I bought my car. Seems that MSRP has gone up close to 10% since then for basically the same vehicle, which is why the used prices are still so high. I was just looking at a 2018 JLUR and the local dealer's asking price was $45K on their website! It was fairly well equipped and offered a CPO warranty, but it's 3 years old already. Ugh.
 

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