Should I build a Wrangler or hold out for the right used JL? Should I even BUY a Wrangler?

berb

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Hi, everyone. Total "noob" here so apologies for the vague subject line and basic questions, but I'm planning to make the biggest purchase of my life outside of my home and I figured who better to ask than people who drive what I am becoming obsessed with.

A little about my situation: This will be my only vehicle. My credit is good but I plan to pay cash in full. I have been driving the same Chevy pickup for 21 years, and have about $36,408 saved up. Late last year I went to test drive a used Tacoma and for no reason other than it caught my eye, also test drove a manual Willys Wrangler. While the Tacoma seemed far and away the more practical choice; that Jeep was SO fun to drive that I couldn't bring myself to buy the pickup. I left the dealership with no new keys in hand to do my homework. Weeks later I still can't stop thinking about it. I have built no less than 200 of them online at this point.

We live in the mountains and a 4 wheel drive is mandatory. I hunt and fish on land you wouldn't exactly want to take a Camry through. This is part of the reason a used JL appeals to me -I don't want to put the first scratches on a shiny new Jeep. But my daily driving will be exactly 2 miles to work and 2 miles home each day, trips to the grocery store and so forth. Something my wife can drive when there's snow and ice.

I am not a mechanic. I am not good at diagnosing vehicle problems and worse at fixing them myself. Reliability is paramount, and my biggest fear is expenses after the warranty expires. Threads abound here with titles like, "Back to the dealership" and I do realize that people are going to post when something goes wrong more often than, "My JL hit 100,000 miles today." My faith in Fiat isn't terribly high though.

I've spoken with Travis at Tri-Cities who is a sponsor here. My local guy offered $500 off of invoice, and Travis does 5%, and another 1% if I get an FCA control number. Attached is the build I sent him to quote. Has everything I want except cold weather group, because I can't seem to add that without a convenience group (and with a manual, it won't remote start, plus I have no garage door).

My preferences are as follows (please chime in if anyone thinks any of these aren't worth the $ or I'm omitting something I might wish I had down the road):
3 piece hard top
manual (aware of the recall)
wheels that aren't ugly (Yes, I can upgrade later, but I can already hear my wife saying something about replacing "perfectly good wheels")
LED lighting group
a color my wife and I both like (Sarge green is my favorite, hers is Snazberry, ocean blue metallic is #2 for both of us)
Side steps since she's 5' flat
A/C
Cold weather group
In a perfect world I'd want steel bumpers, but they only seem to be available on the Rubicon which is out of my budget (new anyway). Thanks for reading all of this and look forward to hearing your thoughts.
I was in the same situation as you were. I wanted a jeep but my house needed a truck, so I bought a Galdiator. Best of both worlds, you get your jeep, plus a truck bed.
You need to decide if you want a Manual Transmission over Heated Seats. Because you cannot get the cold weather group without remote start, and you cannot get remote start on a manual transmission. Now, you can add heated seats aftermarket if you get the manual transmission.
As far as the steel bumper just search Craig's List. There are plenty of people out there that buy Rubicons and replace their bumpers and then list them on Craig's list.
I hope this helps, good luck!





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Blue Ridge

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It helps a lot and I appreciate your input. I went to a dealership and test drove a couple today. I was out of town moving furniture and happened to pass one and just decided to pull in since I had finished up an hour early. I think the Gladiator is the route I'll wind up going. There wasn't a Sarge Green one anywhere nearby but they quoted me on one that's on a lot over 300 miles away. The pricing wasn't bad, but the Jeep they quoted me didn't have a few features I'd absolutely want on a pickup (like the towing package, rail system, and aux switches). I've added these things and will send them to Travis and my local dealer and see what they can quote me.
 

#1 for me

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Hi, everyone. Total "noob" here so apologies for the vague subject line and basic questions, but I'm planning to make the biggest purchase of my life outside of my home and I figured who better to ask than people who drive what I am becoming obsessed with.

A little about my situation: This will be my only vehicle. My credit is good but I plan to pay cash in full. I have been driving the same Chevy pickup for 21 years, and have about $36,408 saved up. Late last year I went to test drive a used Tacoma and for no reason other than it caught my eye, also test drove a manual Willys Wrangler. While the Tacoma seemed far and away the more practical choice; that Jeep was SO fun to drive that I couldn't bring myself to buy the pickup. I left the dealership with no new keys in hand to do my homework. Weeks later I still can't stop thinking about it. I have built no less than 200 of them online at this point.

We live in the mountains and a 4 wheel drive is mandatory. I hunt and fish on land you wouldn't exactly want to take a Camry through. This is part of the reason a used JL appeals to me -I don't want to put the first scratches on a shiny new Jeep. But my daily driving will be exactly 2 miles to work and 2 miles home each day, trips to the grocery store and so forth. Something my wife can drive when there's snow and ice.

I am not a mechanic. I am not good at diagnosing vehicle problems and worse at fixing them myself. Reliability is paramount, and my biggest fear is expenses after the warranty expires. Threads abound here with titles like, "Back to the dealership" and I do realize that people are going to post when something goes wrong more often than, "My JL hit 100,000 miles today." My faith in Fiat isn't terribly high though.

I've spoken with Travis at Tri-Cities who is a sponsor here. My local guy offered $500 off of invoice, and Travis does 5%, and another 1% if I get an FCA control number. Attached is the build I sent him to quote. Has everything I want except cold weather group, because I can't seem to add that without a convenience group (and with a manual, it won't remote start, plus I have no garage door).

My preferences are as follows (please chime in if anyone thinks any of these aren't worth the $ or I'm omitting something I might wish I had down the road):
3 piece hard top
manual (aware of the recall)
wheels that aren't ugly (Yes, I can upgrade later, but I can already hear my wife saying something about replacing "perfectly good wheels")
LED lighting group
a color my wife and I both like (Sarge green is my favorite, hers is Snazberry, ocean blue metallic is #2 for both of us)
Side steps since she's 5' flat
A/C
Cold weather group
In a perfect world I'd want steel bumpers, but they only seem to be available on the Rubicon which is out of my budget (new anyway). Thanks for reading all of this and look forward to hearing your thoughts.
I purchased a extended warranty because of the reliability issue . 8yr 100,000 mile maxcare 100 deductible for $1710.00
 
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Blue Ridge

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Dang. That's a cold weather group and upgraded wheels! Still will consider it.
 

#1 for me

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Dang. That's a cold weather group and upgraded wheels! Still will consider it.
I understand. I've purchased 29 new vehicles 27 GM 1 Ford and a Jeep #29 . I've never bought a extended warranty until the Jeep . It took a 1 yr and 9 months to get the steering fixed properly and been to the Dealer 9 times that's crazy .When I purchased my new Rubi with 9 miles I trailered it home 3 /2 hrs away parked it in the garage next day coolant on the floor . I called the Dealer they didn't really give a shit their GM give me the run around and wouldn't answer calls from Jeep cares .I ended up taking it to a local Dealer to get it fixed with no help from Dave Dennis Jeep .I've got news for them I wouldn't purchase squat again from them . Their the worst Jeep Dealership there is !
 

RubixWNC

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It helps a lot and I appreciate your input. I went to a dealership and test drove a couple today. I was out of town moving furniture and happened to pass one and just decided to pull in since I had finished up an hour early. I think the Gladiator is the route I'll wind up going. There wasn't a Sarge Green one anywhere nearby but they quoted me on one that's on a lot over 300 miles away. The pricing wasn't bad, but the Jeep they quoted me didn't have a few features I'd absolutely want on a pickup (like the towing package, rail system, and aux switches). I've added these things and will send them to Travis and my local dealer and see what they can quote me.
Chip (Blue Ridge), we have been shopping in the same area. My observation is that Alabama/Texas has good deals. But, shopping closer to home, leave the mountains to look. The best deals were from Raleigh, NC - to - Greenville, SC - to - Charleston, SC.

I just got my 2018 Wrangler Rubicon JL (ultra low mileage) for well under KBB (5K+). I have been watching diligently. However, the paperwork will make it look like I paid more. It seems that dealerships are giving more for decent truck trade-ins to keep the prices up on the KBB arena.
 
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Blue Ridge

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Nice! I've also got my eye on a Rubicon (2 door) on a local lot. Steel bumpers and most everything I thought I was going to have to do after the fact. Does have power doors which I didn't want to pay for in a 2 door, but price ($47,870) is pretty decent off sticker (50,365). Test driving it this weekend if the weather holds. Hopefully they will come off the price enough to make it happen. I'd been avoiding out of state dealerships thinking their higher sales tax would negate any savings, but have learned that I'll pay NC sales tax rate either way.
 

viper88

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Life is short and apparently getting shorter. CDC just announced the average life span for the average American dropped a year due to covid.

You built no less than 200 possible configurations! You seem really excited about a Wrangler. GET IT! Like I said life is short. Get the Wrangler you want and enjoy the hell out of it. Enjoy the exprience and camaraderie of this forum and the Wrangler lifestyle. Make sure you WAVE!

It is a FCA product (actually Stellantis now) so don't expect Toyota QC. For peace of mind you can always buy a Mopar Max Care Extended Warranty for a huge discount from one of the online dealers.

I hope to see pictures of your Wrangler here one day!

Good Luck!
 

RubixWNC

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Nice! I've also got my eye on a Rubicon (2 door) on a local lot. Steel bumpers and most everything I thought I was going to have to do after the fact. Does have power doors which I didn't want to pay for in a 2 door, but price ($47,870) is pretty decent off sticker (50,365). Test driving it this weekend if the weather holds. Hopefully they will come off the price enough to make it happen. I'd been avoiding out of state dealerships thinking their higher sales tax would negate any savings, but have learned that I'll pay NC sales tax rate either way.
I got an almost fully loaded 2018 JL Wrangler Rubicon, 4 door, leather, manual transmission, 8.4" screen, with <14k miles for under $40k. I had better luck at a non-Jeep dealership. They paid over KBB trade-in value, for my trade-in, to make it happen. This is a fairly rare deal, but they are out there. Be willing to walk out (politely, with clear communication that you are glad they tried, but you just aren't able to meet their price needs).
 

MrGneissGuy

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I had never considered ordering a car before. I looked at dealerships and online for a while first, but could not find one with what I wanted, and was thinking about settling on one that was close when my wife said "We're old enough now we shouldn't settle". That combined with the fact that we tend to keep our vehicles for a long time made up my mind. I ordered my 2021 Sport S the day after my wife ordered her Telluride. Sure I had to wait a couple months (about 1.5 actually), but in the end, my Jeep has everything that I was looking for. I am quite happy I went that route.

Obviously, had I found one at a dealership that matched 100% what I was looking for I would have grabbed it, but that didn't happen. I recommend ordering.
 

#1 for me

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I had never considered ordering a car before. I looked at dealerships and online for a while first, but could not find one with what I wanted, and was thinking about settling on one that was close when my wife said "We're old enough now we shouldn't settle". That combined with the fact that we tend to keep our vehicles for a long time made up my mind. I ordered my 2021 Sport S the day after my wife ordered her Telluride. Sure I had to wait a couple months (about 1.5 actually), but in the end, my Jeep has everything that I was looking for. I am quite happy I went that route.

Obviously, had I found one at a dealership that matched 100% what I was looking for I would have grabbed it, but that didn't happen. I recommend ordering.
My Dad taught me never settle for 2nd best you'll regret it. The other was it only cost a little more to go 1st class you only live once .
 

#1 for me

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Nice! I've also got my eye on a Rubicon (2 door) on a local lot. Steel bumpers and most everything I thought I was going to have to do after the fact. Does have power doors which I didn't want to pay for in a 2 door, but price ($47,870) is pretty decent off sticker (50,365). Test driving it this weekend if the weather holds. Hopefully they will come off the price enough to make it happen. I'd been avoiding out of state dealerships thinking their higher sales tax would negate any savings, but have learned that I'll pay NC sales tax rate either way.
I'd offer them $44,300 that's about 12% of MSRP which I feel is fair . When I ordered my Rubi we agreed on 12 % off lock lugs thrown in on the deal along with a $ 235.00 bend over Doc fee . My 2 cents
 
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Blue Ridge

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Good to know a baseline, thanks. I'm visiting 2 dealerships Saturday and then seeing what they will do and hopefully go back to one Sunday or Monday. Before making a decision I'm going to see what Travis from Tri Cities can do if there's anything on his lot that fits my bill. If nothing materializes, will send him my build specs and wait. It's nice to not be in a hurry.
 
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Blue Ridge

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Man, I thought I'd found the Willys for me at a dealership out of state. Went back and forth and after finally getting hard numbers realized that what seems too good to be true often is. They got really tricky with the pricing. Posted a great price online and then added the delivery fee after the fact. It's already part of the MSRP!!!
VBlOtLv.jpg


I1KXLKo.jpg

Very frustrating, but I'll keep looking. Still not a bad price but for a 14 hour round trip and doctored numbers, I'll pass.
 

#1 for me

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Man, I thought I'd found the Willys for me at a dealership out of state. Went back and forth and after finally getting hard numbers realized that what seems too good to be true often is. They got really tricky with the pricing. Posted a great price online and then added the delivery fee after the fact. It's already part of the MSRP!!!
VBlOtLv.jpg


I1KXLKo.jpg

Very frustrating, but I'll keep looking. Still not a bad price but for a 14 hour round trip and doctored numbers, I'll pass.
NOT !
 

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