So, you like Jeeps and you`ve recently taken a shine to the capable Jeep Wrangler. It turns out, you have two options to choose from the short-wheelbase Wrangler and its larger four-door sibling, the Wrangler Unlimited. So what sets these two extraordinarily similar vehicles apart from one another and which one should you go for?
Building on an Idea
The idea of a four-door Wrangler wasn`t a new one. In 1997, Jeep created the Dakar concept by adding two rear doors and an extra 15 inches to the TJ Wrangler`s wheelbase. While the concept was well-received on the auto show circuit, the idea of a four-door Wrangler wouldn`t be a reality until the introduction of the JK Wrangler in 2007. Before that the LJ Unlimited in model years ’04, ’05 and ’06 was a 10″ extended two-door version of the Wrangler.
Both vehicles offer the same 285-horsepower 3.6-liter Pentastar DOHC V6 engine and the same transmission choices (five-speed automatic or six-speed manual.) Both get similar gas mileage; the Unlimited is only 1 mpg behind the short-wheelbase version, at an EPA-estimated 16 mpg city and 20 mpg highway. The trim levels are identical for both Jeeps and the options list matches up for both as well, aside from standard air conditioning on all Unlimited trims and the availability of pure rear-wheel drive on the Unlimited X and Sahara. The only other genuine difference between the two is the overall size.