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Archive for August, 2018

All-new 2018 Jeep® Wrangler Sahara

 

Jeep is planning to release a Plug-in Hybrid version of their popular Wrangler in 2020. The company announced that it will use its Ohio based Toledo Machining Plant to produce some of the key components for the plug-in-hybrid Wrangler. The plant is being prepared to manufacture the vehicle’s Power Electronics module. That includes the Power Inverter as well as the Integrated Dual Charger, the on-board charger along with the DC/DC converter that’s used for fast charging. Once the parts are produced and tested, they will be transferred to the Toledo Assembly Plant nearby where the Wrangler PHEV is scheduled to be assembled.

According to Jeep sources, the vehicle’s Power Electronics module will be placed in a protective structure located inbetween the exhaust and the drive shaft. Insiders say both the plug-in hybrid components and the V6 engine to be used in the new PHEV Wrangler are likely modelled on those used in the Chrysler Pacifica. Although Jeep hasn’t released much more specifics about the new PHEV Wrangler, it is possible to look at other vehicles in the FCA lineup to understand more about the technology that will be found in the new Wrangler plug-in.

The Pacifica plug-in is powered by a 3.6-liter V6 engine that is modified to use the Atkinson cycle to make it more efficient. It works alongside an electronically variable transmission, a battery pack with 16 kWh and dual electric motors. Using this setup, the Chrysler Pacifica can go as fast as 75 mph using its electric drive alone. This allows it to travel about 33 miles before it needs to be recharged. While some may not think that the Jeep Wrangler plug-in hybrid has power, you will be able to prove them wrong. Once available, you can test drive one at Chapman Chrysler Jeep. Until then, you can check out a Jeep Wrangler to fit your needs.

The Jeep Wrangler’s heavier design means its all-electric range will be shorter unless FCA installs a larger battery pack. Should the company modify the PHEV Wrangler’s battery pack size, it would reduce the Wrangler plug-in’s economy of scale versus the Chrysler minivan which uses the same drivetrain. Chrysler currently procures the battery for the Pacifica Hybrid at Michigan-based LG Chem. It’s very likely Jeep would get the battery pack for the new PHEV Wrangler from the same source. The packs include a thermal management system as well as an extremely dense power to weight ratio that’s approximately 100 Wh per kilogram.

It’s very likely that FCA will begin releasing a lot more information about the Jeep Wrangler plug-in as it gets closer to its 2020 launch date. According to information released by the company, Fiat-Chrysler has plans to release at least 30 electric powered vehicle models by the year 2022. The Jeep Wrangler PHEV is positioned to be among the first of them to be released. The environmental bonuses of using hybrid electric vehicles and the growing demand for them is driving FCA to offer a growing number of PHEV.

For people who are serious about off-roading, the immediate torque as well as the chance of having higher outputs going to the wheel while traveling at low speeds is something very exciting. And Jeep is adding to that excitement with the Wrangler PHEV.

 

 

The 2019 Jeep Cherokee has been released and there are some noticeable differences to this popular model of Jeep. For those who are very fond of the Cherokee, this is the first real updates that the vehicle has received since 2014. Overall, the changes are all an improvement.

To start, the engine has been changed for the vehicle. The horsepower has decreased by one horse to 270, but the torque has been increased. This gives the engine more power at the get go and allows it to perform better overall. After trying two different versions of the Cherokee, the new engine is definitely ranked as an improvement.

The transmission, however, still has the lag in it that was experienced when it was last changed in the 2014. There is a noticeable pause between stepping on the gas and when the vehicle actually starts to move. For some people, this would be a deal-breaker on buying the vehicle, for others it does not matter.

There are a few tweaks to the interior of the vehicle that were probably not necessary, but definitely an improvement. The seven-inch screen and operating system are nice and work well. We will say, however, that if you are operating an older phone or operating system on your phone, there maybe a conflict between the two systems.

The interior has about the same amount of room as previous versions and the head room in the back is still lower than similar models. However, most people do not even notice the difference in head room and a person that is six-foot-tall can easily fit in the back seat without having to bend their neck.

The Cherokee, of course, is still an exceptional off-road vehicle. This has been the fact for as long as anyone can remember. The new model does not disappoint in this manner in any way. The Cherokee will remain the top of the line off-road vehicle for the 2019 model. While you can’t take a Cherokee off-roading on a test drive, you can test drive one at Chapman Chrysler Jeep.

The safety features on the 2019 Cherokee have been improved as well. Newer technologies have been added to the vehicle and older technologies have been improved. The vehicle has not undergone all of its new crash testing by the Insurance Safety Council, but it is anticipated to pass with flying colors as it always does. The Cherokee almost always ranks high in safety features because Jeep knowns this vehicle is often taken off-road and used in rougher conditions than just highway driving.

The only other drawback that was really discovered with the vehicle is the fact that you must run premium gas in the car for top performance. This pretty much eliminates any cost savings you would have from the exceptionally high miles per gallon this type of vehicle offers.

Overall, if you love the Jeep Cherokee, you will also love the 2019 version. The good points far outweigh any drawbacks that we discovered when testing the vehicle. The 2018 version of the Jeep Cherokee was ranked as the best built car in the U.S. for that year. It will be easy to believe that the updated 2019 version will have no problem earning this title as well.

 

The 2018 version of the Jeep Wrangler JL is a stylistic modern reimagining that honors its heritage while maintaining its off-road capabilities. It’s more an evolution than a reinvention. This all-new Jeep Wrangler looks and performs great. Its Toledo, Ohio assembly facility is working overtime to meet the demand for this beloved automobile.

While the new Wrangler’s exterior looks largely unchanged, Jeep’s designers and engineers have woven modernity into it. This includes the grille’s “keystone shape”, headlights invading the grille’s outer slats, along with the full-length rain gutter serving as a handy point of attachment for the roof-rack systems. The 2018 Wrangler JL has a larger windshield rake, yet is more aerodynamic with a streamlined system connecting the windshield to the A-pillars while allowing it to fold flat. The rearview mirror remains in place and the doors are still removable. To see how a 2018 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited JL works for you, check one out at Chapman Chrysler Jeep.

Built on a new steel frame featuring five boxed cross-members and solid Dana axles in the front and rear connected to the coil-spring suspensions, the 2018 Wrangler JL is longer, with a wider wheelbase and has weight-saving aluminum all over. It’s in the engine mounts, steering gear, hood, doors, fenders, hinges and windshield frame. Its enlarged tailgate’s cast-magnesium assembly is covered with an aluminum exterior skin. The new Wrangler JL also has hollow steel track and anti-roll bars.

The 2018 Wrangler JL’s standard powertrain is the 285 horsepower, 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 which produces 260 pound-feet of torque, mated with a choice between the standard six-speed manual or the new eight-speed automatic transmission. It has standard stop/start functionality, electronic trailer-sway control and an optional towing package with Class II hitch receiver, four or seven-pin adaptors, 700-amp battery, 240-amp alternator and auxiliary switches. The two-door model has a maximum tow rating of 2,000 pounds and the four-door’s is 3,500. There’s also an available new turbocharged 2.0-liter, 268 horsepower hybridized inline-four engine with eTorque assist matched with an eight-speed automatic transmission that together produces 295 pound-feet of torque.

The two-door Wrangler JL is available in Sport, Sport S as well as Rubicon spec and the four-door comes in Sport, Sport S, Sahara and Rubicon. All have push-button start, backup camera, skid plates, two hooks, cruise control, hill-start assist, side air bags, five USB outlets, fog lights, halogen headlamps and easy-to-access topless motoring with the standard Sunrider softtop. There’s even a Sky One-Touch power-top option on the four-door Sahara and Rubicon models and an optional three-piece hardtop called the Freedom Top.

Technology and creature comforts inside include a driver’s seat that’s six-way manually adjustable, tilting, telescoping steering column and 5.0-inch touchscreen UConnect 3 standard infotainment setup. The Technology Group has a Uconnect 4 system with 7.0-inch touchscreen, 7.0-inch instrument-cluster display, a satellite radio, plus, dual-zone automatic climate control. Its Infotainment Group includes an 8.4-inch touchscreen, navigation, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, nine-speaker premium audio system, electrochromic rearview mirror and available Jeep Off-Road Pages.

The 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL offers all this, plus its legendary off-road and rock climbing skills. Its a remarkable vehicle.