Status
Not open for further replies.

The Great Grape Ape

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2017
Messages
2,856
Reaction score
4,103
Location
Canadian Rockies
Vehicle(s)
2015 JKU AspenX 5spd , 2015 JK Sport 6spd
So sounds like it's the axle ratio that's makes the biggest difference in tow capacity and the reason the JK tow capacity is so low because of its high 3.21 axle ratio?
Not exactly, but partially. As you noted, the JK/JKU actually has higher available ratios than on the RAM with 3.73 & 4.10 options from the factory in addition to the base (efficient) 3.21 , and if you get the tow package on any JK it comes with at least the 3.73 ratio, but the max towing capacity doesn't change in the Wrangler when going from 3.73 to 4.10, meaning the limiting factor is outside that component.

As I meantion in the AEV comment it's a bunch of other things holding it back (suspension components, frame tollerances, etc) also including the brakes, which the Euros can upgrade to the Big Brake Kit. However if you max out all the stock Mopar bits available in the 'build & price' section or in a FCA build sheet ordering directly from the factory, you're likely still topping out at the 4,xxx lbs mark, not getting anywhere near the Gand Cherokee max towing numbers, let alone a Ram.

Which components exactly are holding it back is not widely known, but that the military J8 version has both higher payload (2,500lbs) and towing (7,700lbs) numbers gives us an indication of possible clues. The J8 has a Euro 2.8L CRD diesel, leafs springs instead of coil-over suspension, and a D60 axle instead of the D44, so those likely play a role. Though the diesel alone doesn't offer that type of a boost to Eruo Wranglers, so it's the other components that open up the increased capacities. The suspension impact can also been seen in the Power Wagon, which has noticeably lower capcities than the Ram 2500.
Advertisement

 
Last edited:

WXman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2017
Messages
2,640
Reaction score
2,548
Location
Central Kentucky
Vehicle(s)
2018 Wrangler Unlimited
Occupation
Meteorology and Transportation
The tow rating on the JKU has intrigued me for a long while.

If you look at how the vehicle is built, it's basically structured the same as the Ram 2500. Ladder frame, solid axles, heavy duty automatic transmission, deep axle ratios, etc. The wheelbase is on par with midsize 4x4s like the Tacoma, Frontier, etc. Mechanically, there is NO reason why they straddled it with that miserable 3,500 lb. limit.

So then you think, ok, what is it? Is it the body? Places like U-haul won't rent large trailers to convertible owners because of safety issues. Is it the fact that on the JKU, the receiver hitch only bolts to a horizontal crossmember, rather than bolting down both frame rails like on every other truck? There's something about the body/design that's causing the low tow rating. It's not a mechanical/drivetrain issue.
 

WXman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2017
Messages
2,640
Reaction score
2,548
Location
Central Kentucky
Vehicle(s)
2018 Wrangler Unlimited
Occupation
Meteorology and Transportation
The other theory is that they don't want to canibalize sales of the other models. They tout the Grand Cherokee as a heavy tower. That's why it's always had V8 power as an option.

I guess the point is, as long as the Wrangler is convertible, uses only a crossmember to attach the hitch to, and is placed under the Grand Cherokee in terms of power, we can likely expect that towing capacity will not increase much for the JL, JLU, and JT...if it even increases at all.
 

The Great Grape Ape

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2017
Messages
2,856
Reaction score
4,103
Location
Canadian Rockies
Vehicle(s)
2015 JKU AspenX 5spd , 2015 JK Sport 6spd
The other theory is that they don't want to canibalize sales of the other models. They tout the Grand Cherokee as a heavy tower. That's why it's always had V8 power as an option.

I guess the point is, as long as the Wrangler is convertible, uses only a crossmember to attach the hitch to, and is placed under the Grand Cherokee in terms of power, we can likely expect that towing capacity will not increase much for the JL, JLU, and JT...if it even increases at all.
Agree with all that, except for the mention of power. Plus the JT will be a different animal, because it has to be, even to be considered at the adult table instead of at the kiddies table with the Subaru Baja, etc.

The engine has little to do with the Wrangler's limits, it tops-out elsewhere long beforehand. The Pentastar can tow twice as much in other applocation as it does under the Wrangler's current limit. So, mentioning 'power under a GC' doesn't add up when the difference in towing capacity in a GC between the Pentastar and all other options is just 1,000 pounds and starts 2,700 lbs above the Wrangler in US spec, while the export Grand Cherokees put the Hemis in the same tow rating as the Pentastar with only the diesel getting the bump. And in 2012 the Pentastar and 6.4L Hemi had the the same tow rating too, all pointing to other bottlenecks even there. And while I mention the RAM's axles being low ratio at 3.55, the GC is even lower at 3.45, so they definitely are putting efficiency over capability, as seen by the usual Hemi's ultra low 3.09 also, the SRT gets a nice 3.70 but somehow tows just as much as the 5.7 with a lower ratio... again denote it's not a power thing.

So how much is REALLY the engine, versus other physically limiting components plus those aspects/features held back for marketing reasons, which I agree definitely plays a role in this. It probably shouldn't play as big a role since they are so different, but that's business analysts for ya'.

Something FCA needs to consider is that if they continues to cripple the Wrangler's capabilities then stop making and showing marketing material like the image above implying any type of serious capability in towing. Don't show it towing more than a seadoo or pop-up tent trailer, and even then... just don't.

Either improve the capabilities or stop implying it's capable, and you can't get away with that crap in the truck market with a weak JT, they will eviscerate and mock it, and it will never recover from that kind of launch.
 

CarCrazed4Life

New Member
First Name
Charlie
Joined
Jul 13, 2017
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Location
Philadelphia, PA
Vehicle(s)
08 Dakota, 97 NSX,
Sorry for bringing an old post back to life, but first time posting. I've been a mopar guy for a bit now when choosing a truck. First with an 03 Dakota, then an 08 Dakota. I've been following the Jeep Wrangler pickup with much interest. There are 2 things I use my truck for, plowing and towing. I've almost considered the new Colorado, as it can tow 7,000 Lbs and still carry a half ton plow on the front since the FGAWR is rated well enough.

I've noticed the overseas versions of trucks (Hilux, Ranger, etc) are all rated higher with more compact footprints. Something the Wrangler will probably have. I think all signs point to the Wrangler and Wrangler pickup being pretty capable. Some of the concerns about suspension design for off road capabilities are true. But I suspect similar to the Rubicon versions, the truck will have more off-road capable suspension options at the cost of capacity to towing or axle capacity.

One thing I am curious to know from the group here is what has the news been on release dates, and especially with the diesel engine and if it makes it. Seeing how FCA is under scrutiny with regards to the EcoDiesel, and GM seems to be the only name in the game right now, does it look like the diesel option will make it?

Thanks guys.
 

digitalbliss

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 26, 2017
Messages
2,112
Reaction score
1,913
Location
North Alabama
Vehicle(s)
2018 JLUR, 1979 CJ7
I just read over this thread and it makes me realize that a lot of "Jeep guys" may not be very well versed in towing. Engine performance does make a difference with towing, however there are many other factors. As noted with the Tacoma above, the Taco tow package would include Class-IV towing receiver hitch,28 ATF cooler (not available on M/T), engine oil cooler, power steering cooler, 130-amp alternator, 4- and 7-pin connector with converter, and Trailer-Sway Control (TSC)29 (V6 only).

Fast forward to a jeep. What makes a good off road vehicle? A short(er) wheelbase, flexible suspension, higher ground clearance, lighter vehicle. That's pretty much the opposite of a good tow vehicle. For a good, stable tow vehicle, you want a longer wheelbase, a rigid frame, stiff springs/suspension, low center of gravity, heavy planted vehicle. After that, you can compare powertrains, gearing, cooling, brakes, etc.. Unfortunately, to keep a Jeep being a Jeep, we are never going to see good tow ratings with out sacrificing the things that help make a Jeep so capable in its bread and butter category of off roading.

Now the JL truck may be a different story. Sure its a Jeep, but its not a JEEP. I bet it will be more of a truck that looks like a Jeep instead of a Jeep that looks like a truck. Im betting FCA is shooting for a 7,000 lbs tow rating. Also don't forget, trucks now have to adhere to SAE J2807 standards to advertise their tow ratings.

My final thoughts (if you're still reading this) on tow ratings in different countries is something that applies to all vehicles. In the good ole' US of A we tow big stuff fast. Basically, we put 10% or more trailer weight on our hitch. This allows us to pull a heavier load at faster speeds and maintain a more stable rig. In Europe/Australia/other places, they load a much lighter tongue weight on to their tow vehicles. This allows much smaller vehicles to carry heavier loads. However there is a big caveat to this, the speed is limited to 55(ish) mph. All of this has to do with trailer sway and oscillation relative to tongue load.
Read this article to find out more, it even used a 2014 JKUR as one example... https://oppositelock.kinja.com/tow-me-down-1609112611/1609771499/+ballaban
 
Advertisement
Status
Not open for further replies.

Diode Dynamics
 
Advertisement
Top