2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
Since Jeep started producing vehicles, they’ve had a long history of icons on and off the road. The Jeep Wrangler was the very first Jeep vehicle, and after many years, Jeep thought, “Can we do better?” The answer, is the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, now in its 2017 model year. Aside from extra interior space for the driver, passengers and/or cargo, and four doors, it looks like the classic Wrangler.
Available 4×4 System
Being a spinoff of its predecessor, the Jeep Wrangler, the Wrangler Unlimited shares some aspects. First and foremost, the Wrangler Unlimited is made for off-road glory with its standard 4×4 drivetrain. It’s also powered by a single engine type, the award-winning Pentastar V6 engine, a 3.6-liter engine with variable valve timing (VVT).
VVT technology is a design that controls the air/fuel intake/exhaust valves of an engine’s cylinders. VVT can truly optimize an engine’s power output and the vehicle’s fuel economy. As it stands, the 3.6-liter V6 puts out 285-horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. The 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited gets 17/21 mpg city/highway, and can be paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission (optional) or a 6-speed manual transmission (standard).
Driving and Handling
There are two available 4×4 systems on the 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited – the Command-Trac 4×4 system, and the Rock-Trac 4×4 system. Command-Trac is fairly popular among the Jeep lineup, although equipped on select models. It’s known for it’s ability to shift between various gear and crawl ratios for the situation at hand, be it flat-towing behind an RV or crawling over rocky terrain. It also transfers more power to both axles when more traction is required.
Little tricky there right? Although a 4×4 vehicle, when it comes to a 4×4 system, it can be full-time or part-time, the latter meaning all four wheels only get power when the terrain requires all four to have traction. That’s why these systems are called a part-time 4×4 system; nevertheless, the Rock-Trac 4×4 has been fine-tuned for off-roading capability whenever you need it. Featuring a 4:1 crawl ratio, the 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon and Rubicon Hard Rock are equipped for a battle against rocky, uneven, and unexpected terrain.
Like many Jeep vehicles, especially those built for exploring the outdoors, there’s no sense in being locked into a metal box. That’s why some Jeeps are customizable, and the Wrangler Unlimited is not without its own configurations, such as removal of the soft top, or exchanging it for a hard top. Many great features can be found on the Wrangler Unlimited too, such as deep tint sunscreen windows to keep the cabin from heating up, available on all but the base trim, the Wrangler Unlimited Sport.
When going a little higher into the lineup, fancy features like automatic LED Headlamps start to appear, but they’re not really necessary unless you plan on rock crawling in the dead of night. Standard on all trims is a tinted windshield, and for visibility at all times, power heated exterior mirrors can be found on select trims. Buyers have the option of 16-, 17- or 18-inch wheels, and can pick one of up to ten colors for the paint job.
Seating trim is hardly ever given much thought unless a driver is looking for luxury, which is why cloth seats are the norm for the 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, whereas upper level trims have leather-trimmed seats. For a little more luxury, the upper level models have heated front seats, but that is also an available option on some trims. Other available features are automatic temperature control, a leather-wrapped shift knob, and leather-wrapped steering wheel.
When it comes to switching up the seats between passengers and cargo, a 60/40 folding rear seat is standard throughout the Wrangler Unlimited lineup. If today is your day to carpool, you can still carry plenty of cargo and equipment in the hidden cargo compartment in the floor and with cargo tie down loops. Gotta keep everything secure when hitting the off-road, right?
What’s better than riding off-road outdoors with no doors or roof on four wheels? Jamming it up to your favorite tunes on the standard 8-speaker system. Jeep really laid it on thick with that one. Although already pretty nice, drivers can upgrade to an Alpine 9-speaker system with an all-weather subwoofer (standard on Chief, Winter, and Rubicon Hard Rock trims).
To keep from getting lost, GPS navigation is available in select trims – do you really need it if you have a smartphone, though? For hands-free control of the sound system, drivers can opt in for the connectivity group and get Uconnect voice command with Bluetooth, if available. However, controlling the music the old-fashioned way isn’t bad, along with steering wheel mounted audio controls.
Safety Features and Warranty
The 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited is protected with many of the standard safety devices today. These include advanced multistage front airbags, supplemental front seat-mounted side airbags, traction and stability control systems, and hill start assist. Extra security comes in the form of a Sentry Key theft deterrent system, standard on all trims. For a little convenience, a remote start system and remote keyless entry is available on select trims.
Jeep vehicles are protected by a 3-year or 36,000-mile basic warranty, a 5-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty, roadside assistance for five years or 100,000 miles, and rust-through coverage for five years or 100,000 miles.