What is the physical limitation of the JL's ability to tow?

jhackathorne

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I've towed close to 5k with a skid steer one a steel trailer and could for sure tell a difference. I was not going very far thankfully, but can't imagine trying to tow more than that for any distance more than 10-15 miles or so.
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Kllrbee

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I dont tow very heavy, but I have a HF trailer that I use for my fishing kayak, 3 wheeler, help people move, etc. Its max GVWR is right around 1500 which is perfect for the 2 door. Im pretty sure Ive had it over 2k and it does start to feel squirrely to me.
I know its not going to be the "sexy" pick cuz its HF. But once I slapped on a 3/4" sheet of plywood, built some sides, and did a little welding at the joints, its been bulletproof.
Little off topic, but thought Id share.
 

OllieChristopher

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In a nutshell, is the JL's towing limited by the brakes, or the gearing, or something else?
All of the above and much more. A Jeep Wrangler of any size, including the JT Gladiator is not engineered to be a serious tow vehicle.

Consumers will ignore this and load them down and tow way past the capability. It's a trend over about the last decade or so to purchase a vehicle and use it opposite of what it is intended for. More and more vehicles are being loaded down to the hilt with so much junk it's not even funny.

Of course the clever Chrysler marketing department jumped all over the popularity of modern day Beverly Hillbillies consumers that demand to load down these rigs and came up with the Gladiator.

Also consider this: Why would you tow behind a vehicle that is designed for maximum articulation? That is a recipe for disaster. A good tow vehicle uses a weight distributing hitch and has very stiff suspension and large sway bars that limit any kind of articulation.

I was surprised that a tow package is an actual option on Wrangler.
 

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calemasters

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What is the physical limitation of the JL's ability to tow?


For my 3.0L diesel, it is the engine's cooling capacity. But I did not buy it to tow, I have a truck for that.
 

JSFoster75

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In a nutshell, is the JL's towing limited by the brakes, or the gearing, or something else?

To elaborate, I keep eyeing the 2-door JL's towing capacity of 2,000 lbs across all trims. However, if you compare the 2017 JK, towing capacity varied based on the gear ratio, from 2,000 to 3,500. Other general research does indicate the rule of thumb is that towing capacity is dependent upon gear ratio, as well. This doesn't follow with the JL, however, since the Rubicon JL has a higher gear ratio than the Sport, but the same towing capacity; yet the 4-door boasts a 3,500 lb capacity with the same gearing, though I assume it has bigger brakes than the 2-door. I take it to mean that the JLs are limited by braking capability rather than pulling ability (i.e., gear ratio)...

My point of this pondering is to figure out whether re-gearing a 2-door to, say, a 4.88 ratio will improve the towing capacity from the measly 2,000 pounds the owner manual states. Of course, one has to consider the tire size in relation to the gears, etc. But, all things the same, does re-gearing increase your safe towing capacity on the JL, or do you need both lower gearing and bigger brakes to bump up that capacity, or is just brakes sufficient?

While I've seen some posts about people pulling 6,000 pound trailers with the 4-door, I haven't found anything breaking down the actual limitations and discussing what is the weak point.

To add an extra wrinkle, would an off road suspension throw the ability to tow heavy loads out the window completely?
My understanding is that the towing weight is directly related to the stopping ability. I towed a 2-door TJ on a 2-wheel car dolly with my 4-Door Saraha JL 2.0L 4cyl through back roads and just took my time, my Jeep didn't seem to strain at all, nor did it have any trouble stopping. However, had I gone over 45mph I wouldn't have wanted to try to stop very quickly.


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rubiria

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The wheelbase is the major limiting factor on the 2-door. You want as long a wheelbase as practical/possible for towing stability.
One of the very reasons I went to a 4 Door instead of 2. The short wheelbase limits you, payload wise. Exceed that Tongue Weight Limit on the 2 Door and you'll literally be wheelieing (in not such a great way).

Luckily, I plan on just towing a Motorcycle or two to the Racetrack (and maybe another trailer to take out the trash to the Landfill) and those are considered lighter loads.
 

GATORB8

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This is for the JT, but he discusses the differences with the JL.
https://jalopnik.com/the-engineering-behind-the-jeep-gladiators-tow-rating-1833657453

I'm guessing it's a combo of having to test at the "highest" gear ration and cooling, based on the article.

I mention this because I’m sure folks are wondering if they can just modify their JL Wrangler with cooling/axles/tires from a JT and be able to tow 7,650 pounds without overheating—the answer, Milo told me, is yes, theoretically, but because there’s more to towing than just cooling—particularly dynamic implications—you probably shouldn’t
 
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