Jeep Wrangler Overview
The Jeep Wrangler is the most iconic off-roader in the world, with a square exterior profile that is immediately recognizable. Known for high-performance abilities for off-roading, such as distinct approach and departure angles, the 2023 Wrangler is the best of the Jeep offerings this year.
The Wrangler has five engine options to optimize performance. The base engine is the 3.6L Pentastar® V6 engine, which has Engine Stop/Start technology, a horsepower of 285, and a max torque of 260 lb-ft. The 2.0L Turbo engine offers superb off-roading ability with a max horsepower of 270 and 295 lb-ft of torque. For an electric motor, the Wrangler has a PHEV electric powertrain option that delivers 470 lb-ft of torque.
For drivers looking for even more power, the Wrangler is also available with a 6.4L HEMI® V8 engine that is ideal for off-road driving. This engine has a max horsepower of 470 with 470 lb-ft of torque. The last engine option is the 3.0L EcoDiesel V6 engine that is designed to go the distance with a driving range of 530 miles, 260 hp, and 442 lb-ft of torque.
The Wrangler is available in both manual and automatic transmissions based on engine selection. The base 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine has a manual transmission with reliable power and automatic transmission with additional low-end torque that is ideal for off-roading needs when paired with the Wrangler's reliable solid front axle and rear locking differentials.
The plug-in hybrid electric PHEV engine available on 4ex models has the best fuel economy out of all the Wrangler powertrains. The PHEV engine can get a whopping 49 mpg for combined city and highway driving. The 3.0L EcoDiesel V6 engine has the second-best economy since this engine can get up to 29 mpg on the highway. The base engine model gets up to 24 mpg with an automatic transmission on the highway.
Interior and Exterior Features
The interior features of the Wrangler get off to an impressive start thanks to the nine-speaker Alpine® Premium Audio system, which is paired with an overhead soundbar and all-weather subwoofer. The Wrangler has a slew of adaptable cargo storage options to optimize cargo space, including the Trail Rail® system and the Jeep Utility Grid. The Wrangler also has upgrades for heated front seats, dual-zone automatic temperature control, and heated mirrors.
As for exterior features, drivers can choose between the Zipperless Black Sunrider® Soft Top, Premium Black Sunrider Soft Top, the Sunrider HardTop, Black Freedom Top® Three-Piece Hard Top, and the Sky One-Touch® Power Top. This SUV also has LED lighting features such as Reflector Headlamps, Fog Lamps, and Daytime Running Lamps.
For further customization, drivers can select the signature MOPAR® Door-Off Mirror Kit that allows the front doors of the Wrangler to be removed without removing the side mirrors. This mirror upgrade is ideal for drivers who plan to take this Jeep on tight trails.
The Wrangler comes with standard connectivity abilities, such as Bluetooth connectivity to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay®. This SUV is paired with a Remote Proximity Keyless Entry, a 7-inch Driver Information Digital Cluster Display, and a Uconnect® 4C NAV 8.4-inch touchscreen.
The standard safety features for the Wrangler include adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam LED headlights, forward collision warning, and blind spot monitoring. The ParkSense® Rear Park Assist System and the ParkView® Rear Back-Up Camera make parking a breeze, as well.
Jeep offers four main trims for the Wrangler, each of which is geared to meet a specific need for an experienced off-roader. Additionally, drivers can upgrade to the Xtreme Recon Package, which includes 35-inch tires to elevate the ground clearance of this vehicle to 12.9 inches and up to 33.6 inches of water fording depth. The Xtreme Recon Package is only available in Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and Wrangler Willys trims.
The Sport trim is configured with a 2L engine, a four-wheel drive type, and an 8-speed automatic transmission with a five-person seating capacity. The maximum cargo space for this SUV is 72.4 cubic feet. The Sport trim has a Command-Trac® 4x4 traction configuration.
The Sahara trim has many of the same mechanical features as the base model, with a towing capacity of 3,500 lbs and a gross combined weight rating of 8,117 lbs. With 18-inch alloy wheels and an 8.4-inch Uconnect 4 touchscreen, this Wrangler is the only trim that comes standard as a four-door model.
The Rubicon is one of the most beloved trim levels with an exclusive Rock-Trac® 4x4 configuration that lowers the gear to a 100:1 crawl ratio perfect for off-road trail riding. The Rubicon comes standard with 33-inch all-terrain tires.
The High Altitude is the top trim for the Wrangler and features leather upholstery and other visual upgrades, such as a body-color hardtop. This SUV has 20-inch alloy wheels for increased durability and performance.
With the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited upgrade, any of the Wrangler's trim levels can become four-door Wranglers. This is a significant upgrade for trims that are only available in two-door configurations, such as the Sport and Rubicon. Upgrading to the Unlimited package gives the SUV more cargo space and interior space for passengers.
Ford Bronco Overview
Many features of the Ford Bronco are similar to the Wrangler, but the Bronco has an overall smoother, less rugged exterior profile. Let's take a quick look at the Bronco base specs.
The powertrain options for the Bronco include a 2.3L or a 2.7L EcoBoost I-4 engine. These engine options have electric power-assisted steering and a max torque ranging between 315 to 400 lb-ft. The 2.3L engine has a turbocharged 300 hp, while the twin-turbo 2.7L V6 engine has a max horsepower of 330.
Some models of the Bronco include a seven-speed manual transmission on two-door models and a 10-speed automatic transmission on four-door models. The 10-speed automatic transmission is available with Trail Control and is compatible with trims such as the Outer Banks® and Wildtrak®.
The fuel economy of the Ford Bronco is rather low. For the automatic transmission, the SUV only gets 20 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway. The upgraded Sasquatch Package with the V6 engine has an even lower fuel economy of 17 mpg for both the city and highway.
Interior and Exterior Features
The interior features include standard cloth seating, a six-way manual driver and passenger seat, and 60/40 split-fold rear seats for four-door models. The standard air condition is a single zone climate control package.
The exterior features of the Bronco include a 150-degree manual swing gate, soft top and hard top options, and tow hooks. The side view mirrors include options such as heated, power glass, manual fold, and in-color finish. For optional exterior upgrades, drivers can opt for a heavy-duty brush guard, tube doors, and a wheel lock kit. The base Bronco also has a removable door and roof panels for open-air driving.
The technology on board the Bronco is relatively simple, with access to SiriusXM® radio, FordPass Connect, and an SYNC® 4 eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system. The Ford supports Remote Keyless Entry and Push-Button Start for optimal convenience, as well as Dual Smart Charging USB ports and 911 Assist® for roadside assistance.
The Bronco comes with standard safety features such as the Personal Safety System®, Safety Canopy®, automatic high-beam headlamps, and Trailer Sway Control. For assistive technology, the base model comes with a rearview camera embedded with Backup Assist Grid Lines and AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control®.
The first edition Bronco base trim level has all the makings of a reliable off-roading vehicle with an independent front suspension, a Terrain Management System, and more. Some drivers may want to upgrade to the Sasquatch Package, which includes 35-inch tires, front and rear locking differentials, and high-gloss aluminum wheels.
The key features of the Big Bend® trim include a G.O.A.T driving mode for going off-road with LED fog lamps and 255/74 all-terrain tires that give good ground clearance. This trim has additional paint color options, such as Area 51 teal.
The Black Diamond® trim adds more heavy-duty features to accommodate off-road driving. These upgrades include overhead auxiliary switches, rubberized seats, and washable flooring.
The Outer Banks trim is designed to optimize luxury with heated front-row bucket seats, dual-zone climate control, and active Co-Pilot 360 safety features. The Outer Banks trim has an electronic center console with added storage space and other upgrades, including a 12-inch touchscreen and wireless charging pad. This trim also has 18-inch wheels.
The Ford Bronco Badlands® trim is certainly a souped-up option with upgrades such as rock rails, bash plates, and a hydraulic front sway bar. The best upgrade on this trim is the addition of the Rock Crawl driving mode and 33-inch all-terrain tires.
The Wildtrak trim is ideal for off-roading on soft terrains, such as deserts. Some of the upgrades on this trim include locking front and rear axles, higher suspension clearance, and seven driving modes. Heated cloth seats and leather seats are also available options.
The Ford Bronco Raptor® is the only trim level that has four-wheel drive with independent front suspension and massive 37-inch all-terrain tires. The Ford Bronco Raptor is the most powerful trim and comes with a standard 3.0L EcoBoost® engine. The Bronco Raptor also has a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Jeep Wrangler vs Ford Bronco: Which Is Better?
While both the Ford and Jeep SUVs have optimized the off-road driving experience, it's easy to see that the Wrangler is the better sports utility vehicle. Beyond any technology upgrades, the off-road capability and performance of the Wrangler easily outshine the Bronco - even upgraded trims like the Bronco Raptor can't hope to compete. Furthermore, the Wrangler has a better cargo area, rear seat configurations, and engine options to customize your off-road driving experience.
Off-road vehicles like the Jeep Wrangler need consistent care to perform at the highest level. As recommended by the owner's manual, the Wrangler should have oil changes every 10,000 miles or every 12 months. Your local Jeep service center will be able to maintain the life of your tires, wheels, and other parts so your off-road experience is always what you expect.
In addition to routine service to optimize the upkeep of your off-roader, Jeep also offers a standard warranty of three years or 36,000 miles for basic coverage. Jeep powertrains have the benefit of a five-year or 60,000-mile warranty for corrosion protection.
While the Ford Bronco certainly tries to keep up, this off-road vehicle ultimately falls short on the standard features and off-road capability included in the Jeep Wrangler. Whether you want to try out the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited or the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, you can be confident that the Wrangler offers more performance and flexibility for everyday use. Get in touch with Landmark Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram at 816-836-0100 to take a Jeep Wrangler out for a test drive today.