Jeep JL Wrangler 2.0 Turbo: More Fun & Efficiency for Less
YouTubers show how better gas mileage, more torque and plenty of tuneability make the Jeep JL’s new four-banger a solid buy.
The Jeep JL Wrangler is, by all accounts, a much improved machine over the outgoing JK. But in addition to the typical V6 offering, the JL can also be had with a new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing a stout 270 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. It’s an enticing option, for sure, especially since the smaller engine packs a whopping 35 more lb-ft of torque than the 3.6-liter V6. But you’ll have pay for that extra grunt, to the tune of $1,000. So the real question is, is that extra dough worth it?
Well, that’s exactly what YouTuber Sons of Speed set out to discover in this recent video. And the first thing to note, obviously, is fuel economy. You lose 15 hp by opting for the four-cylinder, but gain 2 or 4 combined mpgs (2-door and 4-door) over a similarly equipped 8-speed automatic V6.
And at the same time, it seems to be pretty fun, too. “It gets up and goes,” our host notes. And it’ll even spin tires, apparently. “Oh yea, you can get the back end loose,” the host adds after switching to 2wd mode. The typical downsides to a turbo engine are apparent, however. “There’s a bit of turbo lag off the line. There’s no immediate torque to the rear. But as it picked up steam and the turbo built boost, that’s when the tires started getting a little bit loose.”
And hey, you get to hear that turbo “sucking” noise, too. So that’s pretty cool. And when our host takes a second to let the boost build by revving to 3,500 rpm before launching, the Jeep breaks the rear tires loose with no problem. Overall, our host says that the 2.0 “is a pretty good motor for your Jeep if you prefer the extra mileage. Or if you want something to play around with. This thing could probably be tuned pretty good, too.”
A hot rod Jeep with solid fuel economy? Sounds like a winner to us!