Jeep Wrangler Reborn for 2007MY
Jeep let its latest Wrangler out of its cage at 2006 North American International Autoshow. VehicleVoice and AutoPacific correspondents watched the story unfold.
The iconic Wrangler gets a major change for the 2007MY. Sales are set for fall 2006, and the two-door Wrangler broke free at the 2006 North American International Auto Show, drove straight out of Cobo and onto the a Jeep stand across the street, demonstrating both the vehicle’s need to be unrestrained and its ability to climb stairs and inclines with ease. Though not introduced in Detroit, a four-door version is expected as well as the two-door.
The latest Wrangler is described as more Jeep. Though Wrangler enthusiasts are a tricky group to please, as they don’t really want their beloved friends to change, Jeep likely has a winner with upcoming version. It offers more safety and convenience and a better ride, while at the same time improving off-road ability and retaining it’s signature look.
Heavily Revised and Updated Chassis
The new configuration is said to vastly improve NVH, convenience, visibility, and all-weather capability without compromising the open-air feeling and style of the Wrangler. The new hard top has three removable panels that can be taken off by one person and the Sunrider canvas soft top incorporates a sunroof as well as being fully removable. The 100 percent stiffer frame, lower spring rates, and advanced shock tuning, and increased jounce and rebound travel should provide for better on-road manners. Enhancements for even more off-road performance include increased ground clearance, larger wheels and tires, enhanced Dana front and rear solid axles, upgraded optional 4×4 systems (CommandTrac and RockTrac), new electric axle lockers, and an electronic-disconnecting front sway bar. To the cheers of many Jeep purists, the solid axles of the current TJ Wrangler will continue on.
DaimlerChrysler’s 3.8L SOHC modular V6 and powers the new generation, offering 205HP for more power. (There have been rumblings of a 4.7L-V8-powered Wrangler with the new generation, although if a V8 is added, it may arrive about a year after the TK launch.)
Wrangler Offers a More Comfortable and Easier-to-Live-With Environment Than Ever
The exterior retains its traditional shape and removable doors, though those doors now offer optoinal power windows and locks. It offers a longer wheelbase and wider track that translates into nearly five inches more hip and shoulder room inside. Among the other modern conveniences finding their way into this toughest of Jeeps is an optional full-screen DVD navigation system, Sirius radio, and available upgraded stereo. In the more safety column, there are dual-stage airbags, seat-mounted side airbags, and much of the electronic asistance available on larger and more refined SUVs, including roll mitigation and stability control. Three models will be offered, Sahara, X, and Rubicon, with sixteen-, seventeen-, or eighteen-inch wheels and tires.