Jeep Wrangler
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Jeep’s iconic off-roader sounds better and makes taking off the hard-top and doors much easier.

The 3.6-liter V6 makes 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque, but isn’t it about time for the 5.7-liter Hemi or the Chrysler turbo-diesel?; six-speed manual transmission and optional five-speed automatic.

The Wrangler is an icon for a reason. The legendary off-roader enjoys a hardcore following; people who fearlessly dare to use these rugged rascals the way they’re intended. Of course not everyone goes boulder-hopping and canyon-crawling in their Wranglers (the Jeep, not the Jeans), and the vehicle has been slowly and methodically updated to be more friendly to urban commuters. But do good seats and a modern powertrain hurt the offroad experience? Of course not, so it’s really win-win. But there’s more. The back seat of the four-door Unlimited model as well as the soft top both fold easily using, amazingly, just one hand. And the hard-top, doors and bumper caps can more easily be removed with a new standard “torx” tool kit. Both two- and four-door Wranglers can be ordered with a premium top that reportedly is easier to clean and its three layers add a degree of noise insulation. Unchanged is the Chrysler-designed 285-horsepower V6 that connects to either a six-speed manual transmission or optional five-speed automatic. The combo provides for an mpg rating of 17 city and 21 highway (16/21 for Unlimited versions). Base X, Sahara and Rubicon trim levels continue; the first two feature part-time four-wheel-drive with optional limited-slip rear differential. The tough-customer Rubicon uses the Off-Road Rock-Trac unit with its extra-low-range gearing, front/rear-locking differentials for greater agility and 32-inch off-road rubber. For extreme rock crawling and cliff scaling, there’s the two- or four-door Rubicon X. They feature special BF Goodrich off-road tires and Trak-Lok anti-spin rear differentials with available electronic rear lockup. If you don’t know or care what this is then it’s best to stick with a “normal” Wrangler. When equipped with a manual transmission, Wrangler Rubicon X has a crawl ratio of, incredibly, 73:1. It also includes a “power dome” hood, premium rock rails and matching black front and rear off-road bumpers, black wheel arches and black 17-inch wheels.