After using the CarAdvice rating system, I wonder why I love my Wrangler. I suppose the Wrangler is not a car. It has never pretended to be a car, and this makes it unique in a world of SUV’s.
The reason I am a Wrangler owner who is willing to put up with everyone’s negative opinion is because it is an awesome off-roader, in where I can remove the roof, doors and even lower the windscreen to enjoy nature without having to walk.
I found it amazing how negative my friends were when I told them I wanted to buy a Jeep (now I know how Manly supporters feel). No one had firsthand experience of owning a Jeep - they all had read something. I have taken Jeep haters off road (I even let them drive), and it’s amazing how quickly they're telling everyone how good they are off road.
It’s my daily driver and weekend toy. It safely transports my two German Shepherds thanks to a dog harness attaching to the roll bar above their bodies. I treat my Wrangler like a ute; it carries my surfboards and mountain bikes easily because of the square shape. Apparently you can even hose it out due to the carpet being easily removed and the abundance of drain plugs.
The Wrangler has been simple for me to service, as everything is easy to access and there has been no issue accessing parts. I have found the Lismore Jeep dealership very professional when I have had the recalls completed. The main problem for me at the dealership is trying to not buy the new JL Wrangler.
One of the best things about being a Jeeper is the Jeep community support. I enjoy the opportunity to join in on the “Topless days” and many more Jeep events. The Jeep wave is great (I know, I am sad), but I love that sense of belonging.
Jeeps are addictive. My wife has the Grand Cherokee (a lovely tourer) and my daughter has owned a Cherokee (surprisingly good off-road), and most evenings are spent looking at what future modifications I may do. That is a great thing about a Wrangler; you can personalise it. In my small town everyone recognises me because of my Jeep. It was better a few years back when my Jeep was the only one in the area. Today I see so many more Jeeps around, which is great as they all look slightly different.
Driving a Wrangler on the road does come with some challenges. Having a suspension lift and mud terrain tyres has affected the on-road handling - it reminds of my old HR Holden in that it is a little bit floaty and it’s not the quickest thing around the corners. The Wrangler has been a chore on the long distance road trips, but I have loved every kilometre I have travelled in it.
My Wrangler, being a 2007 model, means it is missing out on the niceties of the new Wrangler. The Jeep Wrangler is not for everyone, either you enjoy rock climbing or the novelty of having a 4-door convertible.
The Wrangler suits my active lifestyle and has only done 192,000km, so I will keep it for another 50,000km before I upgrade to the new JL Wrangler Rubicon.