While its shape seemingly hasn’t changed much over the years, the 2018 Wrangler has been completely redesigned inside and out. A 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 and all-wheel drive are standard across the extensive Wrangler lineup, including rock-crawling versions like the highly regarded Rubicon model.
While it doesn’t have any direct rivals, some buyers might prefer an SUV with more refined ride and handling characteristics. The Wrangler’s solid front and rear axles’ primary purpose is off-road adventure, not on-road comfort, no matter how much it’s been improved over its predecessor.
Here you’ll find all the information needed to make an educated buying decision if you’re considering a 2018 Jeep Wrangler including safety and reliability ratings, engine specs, horsepower, fuel economy ratings and pricing.
We’ll also summarize what Autoblog’s professional auto reviewers think of the Wrangler.
Is the 2018 Jeep Wrangler Safe?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not given the 2018 Jeep Wrangler an overall safety rating. However, the 2018 Wrangler is listed as scoring three out of five stars in frontal crash tests and rollover resistance.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which provides ratings for new vehicles based on its own comprehensive crash tests, did not give the 2017 model year (previous generation) Wrangler, the last one fully-tested, a recommended rating.
The 2017 Wrangler scored a “marginal” rating for driver side safety in the small overlap frontal crash test (a passenger side rating was not recorded). Side impact performance came in at a “poor” rating, as did overall headlight performance. One bright spot in an otherwise dismal safety score was the Wrangler’s “good” rating in the moderate overlap front crash test.
Ratings may differ for Wrangler models from other model years, so be sure to visit the https://www.nhtsa.gov/ NHTSA and http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratingsIIHS websites to review ratings on the specific vehicle you’re researching.
At the time of this writing, the 2018 Wrangler is subject to one ongoing recall involving 106 vehicles. The NHTSA states the rear under body ladder rail may corrode, potentially reducing the strength of the rear floor pan and causing the left rear seat mount to become loose. This could be especially dangerous during a crash.
Is the Wrangler reliable?
J.D. Power most recently reviewed initial quality in the 2017 Wrangler, which was before the rugged SUV’s makeover for the 2018 model year. Still, the poor ratings of the previous generation could give some buyers pause.
The 2017 Wrangler scored only two stars out of five for overall quality, overall performance, and design, along with predicted reliability. That puts the Wrangler at the very bottom of J.D. Power rankings.
A note about J.D. Power’s methodology: we have some rather serious issues with the way it weights serious and less serious reliability issues. Read more about that here.
How much interior and cargo room does the Wrangler have?
The 2018 Jeep Wrangler two-door can seat five people, with 41.2 inches of front leg room and 35.7 inches in the backseat. Passengers get 42.6 inches of front head room and 41.7 inches in the rear seat.
The Wrangler two-door offers 13 cubic feet of cargo room with the rear seats in place. Fold them down and this grows to 47 cubic feet of volume.
A Wrangler Unlimited, fitted with four doors, delivers the same level of headroom front and rear as the two-door model. Front leg room is also the same between the two models, at 41.2 inches. Rear legroom gets a noticeable boost though, with 38.3 inches of space available in the Unlimited.
The Wrangler Unlimited also holds an obvious edge over the two-door model when it comes to cargo room. There is a total of 32 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats, with 72 cubic feet available when they’re folded.
Find 2018 Jeep Wrangler pricing, information, and even ones on sale near you.
What are the Wrangler engines and specs?
The Jeep Wrangler comes standard with a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 that delivers 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This engine is coupled to either a 6-speed manual or optional 8-speed automatic.
An optional 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder is available for an additional $1,000 over the V6. With 270 horsepower and 296 pound-feet of torque, this engine is only available with the 8-speed automatic.
Being a Wrangler, four-wheel drive is standard across the entire range. Three transfer case options are available: the Command-Trac part-time four-wheel-drive system, the brawnier Rock-Track system found on the Rubicon, along with a new full-time four-wheel drive system available on the Sahara models.
What fuel economy does the Wrangler get?
A 2018 Wrangler Unlimited V6 delivers an EPA-estimated 18 miles per gallon in the city, 23 mpg on the highway. Models fitted with the manual transmission see overall economy drop 1 mpg in city driving. The fuel economy of the four-cylinder Wrangler has not yet been tested by the EPA.
Is there a hybrid Wrangler?
There is no traditional hybrid version of the 2018 Jeep Wrangler – yet. The four-cylinder models come standard with the company’s eTorque “mild hybrid” system, which increases fuel economy slightly using a beefed-up alternator that can add some power to supplement the engine when needed. A plug-in hybrid has been confirmed for 2020, so if fuel economy is as much a concern as ruggedness, you might want to hold off buying a Wrangler for a couple of years.
Does the Wrangler have 4WD?
Yes, all trim levels of the Jeep Wrangler are equipped with four-wheel drive.
What is the MSRP of the Wrangler?
The 2018 Wrangler Sport two-door equipped with the manual transmission has a starting price of $27,495. A Wrangler Sport Unlimited SUV starts at $30,995, in comparison. At the top of the Wrangler range is the Rubicon Unlimited, which carries a base price of $40,995.
Use Autoblog’s Smart Car Buying program powered by TrueCar to search out competitive local pricing and savings on the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.
Can I read the latest review of the Wrangler?
Autoblog recently tested the brand-new 2018 Wrangler in both V6 and four-cylinder format. We could immediately tell Jeep is aiming for a wider audience with the latest Wrangler. Autoblog’s Consumer Editor, Jeremy Korzeniewski, noted “big infotainment screens and backup cameras make the 2018 Wrangler easier to live with than ever before,” but he recognized Jeep fans will be pleased that the truck’s “essential purity of purpose remains intact.”
Chrysler’s Uconnect infotainment system gives the Wrangler a modern twist and comes with a screen as large as 8.4 inches. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are available, as is 4G LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot connectivity.
The new variable assistance electro-hydraulic steering works “fine,” though high degrees of steering feel aren’t in a Wrangler’s DNA, no matter how many changes might be made. Compared with the standard V6, the turbocharged four-cylinder felt quicker off the line. As it stands, the standard 3.6-liter offers acceleration that is “perfectly adequate.”
A rigorous round of rock-crawling during our test drive proved the Wrangler is still king of the off-roaders. But the wide range of smaller detail improvements – ones you notice in normal everyday driving – make this “the best Wrangler that Jeep has ever built.”
To get a sense of how the Wrangler’s closest competitors stack up, use our Compare Cars tool.