VIDEO: A SNEAK-PEEK AT THE 2018 JEEP WRANGLERDate: 2017-11-02
In a month or so, the all-new Jeep Wrangler will be revealed to us at the LA Motor Show but, to help whet your appetite, Jeep released a video presentation showing images of the vehicle at the SEMA show in Las Vegas recently.
We’ve seen a chunk of spy shots of the new Wrangler in the past few months and, as expected, there are no surprises in the design department. The official pictures reveal a revised, softer nose with those familiar round headlights. The bold, seven grille endures, as does the upright windscreen and flat roofline. According to Jeep, they will have “more open-air options” on offer, with both three and five-door versions expected as before.
There's not much to say about the interior just yet as there's no official statement from Jeep but, based on leaked images, we can expect something not far off from the outgoing model.
There are two touchscreen infotainment systems expected. The first is a new seven-inch which will likely be available on the base models, while the second is 8.4-inches with built-in satellite navigation.
Apparently, the infotainment system will now control most of the car’s functions, such as climate and the off-road settings. Other upgrades for the new Wrangler incorporate new safety technology including automatic emergency braking, a wet weather braking mode, and configurable adaptive steering which is adjustable for different terrain.
Jeep has described the Wrangler as “the most capable SUV”, with more safety features and advanced interior technology.
The engines are more fuel-efficient too. There's a new 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol while carrying over the 3.6-litre V6, most likely revised and updated.
Speculation is rife regarding hybrid or electric power possibly turning those chunky wheels but Jeep Boss, Mike Manley simply stated, “This platform is future-proofed.”
He continued, “Like everyone we have clearly defined plans for electrification of our vehicles. As you get into the 2020s it’s impossible to have a balanced fleet without a wide range of electrification – we have those plans and we have the technology. You’ll probably hear more about electrification towards the end of this year.”
He's clearly enamoured with the new Wrangler, “You’ll be really surprised how far we’ve been able to move things in terms of capability, fuel economy, ride comfort, noise and all of those things. I’m very pleased with where it is. It really does move everything the Wrangler stands for forward significantly.”
Back in 2008, Jeep released a Wrangler EV concept and was considering electrification for the 2015 model, and then again earlier this year at the Geneva Motor Show, Manley revealed that the next Wrangler will likely feature some form of hybridisation. Asked directly if a hybrid would feature in the new range, he said, “Yes. We have continued our studies on hybridisation for the Wrangler, and it’s a balance for us. Obviously, there are loads of different hybrid technologies, from mild to 48v through to full battery-electric.
“For the Wrangler you need to strike the right balance; we don’t want to do something that will leave you stranded on a hillside. So for me, full battery EV is not a great fit. But hybridisation works well with the brand because of the attributes that come with electric motors – not just the torque, but also the control.”
With this in mind, it makes sense then that the Wrangler was put on a diet to improve fuel economy, although it still uses high-strength steel so as not to compromise its tough-guy credentials.
So, we'll have to wait and see if the Wrangler will be the first in Jeep's lineup to feature electric power.
In the meantime though, take a look at the video below for an overview from the guys at TFLnow, then leave us your thoughts in the comments below.