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2008 Jeep Wrangler

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2008 Jeep Wrangler Review

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The 65-year history of what has become America's definitive off-roader---and an icon on the level of national treasures such as the Corvette and Mustang---began with a run of nearly 650,000 units built for use during the last world war. Distributed strictly for civilian enjoyment today, Jeep claims the percentage of Wrangler owners who take their vehicles off road is higher than that of any other brand. A short wheelbase, solid front and rear axles and renowned all-wheel-drive systems combine in a perennial favorite of rock crawlers, mudders and light off-roaders alike. Fresh from a complete overhaul in 2007, the 2008 Jeep Wrangler is both the most capable and the most livable ever.

You'll Like This Car If...

Whether you're an off-road enthusiast, an occasional camper or just a city slicker with a back-country mindset, the rugged yet refined 2008 Jeep Wrangler is sure to please.

You May Not Like This Car If...

For off-roading Wrangler enthusiasts, the 2008 model's extra five inches in width over the previous generation may take some getting used to. Back in town, the more livable Wrangler still isn't as buttoned down as SUVs like the Nissan Xterra or Toyota FJ Cruiser.

What's New for 2008

New features include a standard tire pressure monitor and an optional remote start. A right-hand drive Wrangler X is now available for the U.S and Canada.

Driving the Wrangler

Driving Impressions That the 2008 Jeep Wrangler so effortlessly delivered us from our starting point in the middle of the notorious, boulder-strewn Rubicon Trail back to the striped pavement of civilization did...

not surprise us. The latest Wrangler is rich with new and improved hardware---and software---that renders it even more capable than its predecessor; and that's saying something, considering the previous generation was already one of the most accomplished off-roaders in the world. Still, we were impressed by the uncanny ease with which the Wrangler traversed massive rocks and by the sheer solidity of its three skid plates. One feature we appreciated most is the electronic throttle, which allows for smooth throttle application in low range. Owners of previous Wrangler models will notice a markedly smoother and quieter ride which, once off trail, transforms the Wrangler from a weekend plaything into a viable everyday vehicle.

Electronic-Disconnecting Sway Bar
When rocks on the trail turn into boulders, the Wrangler's front stabilizer bar disconnects at the push of a button for increased wheel travel.

Three-Piece Hardtop
The Wrangler's hardtop now features panels above the driver and front passenger that can be removed independently and stored in the vehicle, allowing for more spontaneous exposure.

2008 Jeep Wrangler Details
Interior

If the addition of niceties like power windows, power locks and a navigation system has you worried that the Wrangler has gotten soft, you'll be happy to know that the changes inside are as evolutionary as the changes outside. They're big improvements to be sure---with higher quality materials and more contemporary styling than previous Wranglers---but the rugged, purpose-built feel remains. Unlimited (four-door) models offer seating for five, which is a first for any Wrangler. Interior color options include gray or khaki and the exterior color carries into the cabin via the door panels. The additional five inches of width make for a noticeably roomier passenger cabin.

Exterior
2008 Jeep Wrangler photo

In proper Jeep fashion, the 2008 Wrangler's doors (full-framed or half) are still removable, its windshield is still foldable and the hinges and latches are still exposed. The familiar signature seven-slot grille and round headlamps present a face as distinctive and recognizable as any on the road. Still, while the newest Wrangler's styling is instantly familiar and every bit as rugged as its decade-old predecessor's, it's also decidedly more contemporary. Wrangler veterans will appreciate the bigger tires and additional ground clearance, but may decry the extra five inches in width while negotiating tight trails---and the absence of easily replaceable bumper caps at the ends of those trails. Roof options include two soft tops and a nifty three-piece hardtop. The first-ever four-door Wrangler rides on a wheelbase that's 20.6 inches longer than that of the traditional two-door.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The least expensive Jeep Wrangler comes with Command-Trac shift-on-the-fly part-time four-wheel drive, a six-speed manual transmission, soft top, six-speaker AM/FM/CD/ audio system with MP3 capability, auxiliary audio input, vinyl seats, three skid plates, 16-inch steel wheels, full metal doors with roll up windows, front airbags and electronic stability and traction control systems including rollover mitigation. In addition to four doors, the base Wrangler Unlimited gets cloth seats with height-adjustable driver's seat and air conditioning.

Optional Equipment

Some of the Wrangler's more significant optional equipment includes a three-piece hardtop, air conditioning, power windows and door locks, remote keyless entry, MyGIG hard drive-based navigation and digital audio system, remote start, six-disc CD changer, front side-impact airbags and a variety of off-road hardware, the toughest of which come standard on Rubicon models.

Under the Hood

All 2008 Jeep Wranglers are powered by a 3.8-liter V6 engine mated with either a six-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. From there, power is distributed through a two-wheel-drive system (available on four-door models only) or one of two part-time four-wheel-drive systems, both of which include a two-speed transfer case. The beefier Rock-Trac system features a 4.00:1 low-range gear ratio (versus 2.72:1 for Command-Trac) and is standard on Rubicon models, which also feature beefier axle sets and locking differentials front and rear. Electronic brake-lock differentials help get power to the loaded wheels by braking spinning wheels. A limited-slip rear differential is upgradeable to a locking rear differential. Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited models can tow up to 2,000 and 3,500 pounds, respectively.

3.8-liter V6
205 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
240 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/21 (2WD, manual), 15/20 (2WD, automatic), 15/19 (4WD, manual), 15/19 (4WD, automatic)

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2008 Jeep Wrangler Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 755 Ratings for the 2007 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

For camping, dune-buggy, around town, but leaks

By on Wednesday, August 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 10,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fun, sun-worshipping, styling"

Cons: "door seals leak - cannot be corrected"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Got the ocean blue pearl 4-door unlimited sport. I love the jeep. Love the look, the handling, the convenience of the soft top. Took it to the outer banks this summer and it did superlative in the sand dunes, never a worry about getting stuck. I did the 1" body lift so far and plan to do a 3 and 1/2 suspension lift with 35" tires soon. We take it camping and with the front seats pushed forward, my husband, my bulldog, and I sleep very comfortably with a memory foam mattress we cut to fit the back. We leave the top down and put a tarp over to keep the bugs and sunrise out, but allow plenty of fresh air in. My only complaint is the door seals leak. It is not a visible drip. It seeps in and the floor gets sopping wet. I have had it to the dealership twice so far for modifications (they put silicone in the rubber seals around the frame, but they always tell me it will never be perfect. ??? The floor will eventually rust out if this isn't corrected. For $35,000 they better be able to get it right or it will be a lemon. I know two other people with the same complaint."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

I love my Jeep!

By on Monday, August 17, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Great resale, Great for Off-Roading"

Cons: "Gas Mileage is so, so. Rough ride"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I bought my Jeep almost 2 years ago and love it! Whether it's driving to and from work everyday or taking it on an off-road trip...I love my Jeep. It's a bit of a rough ride at times and the gas mileage could be better but overall it's a great vehicle. I purchased the Sahara for the leather & navigation and I'm happy I did. The leather is much easier to keep clean and remove dust and dirt from off-roading."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Love my Jeep!

By on Monday, August 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "FUN to drive! Great off road and snow."

Cons: "gas mileage but it can be reasonable."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Not a cozy ride, but a very good. Have taken it on long trips and it was fine. Great Summer and Winter fun. It's always ready to go someplace, and it doesn't care where. Great for parking in large cities, especially with the awesome turn radius. Gas mileage could be better, but I've gotten 24 mpg on the highway."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

Nothing but trouble

By on Monday, August 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,000

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
2/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fun vehicle, great in snow"

Cons: "poor quaility and terrible electrical problem"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"Had to get a new manual transmission because it would pop out of 4th and grind...shifting forks were bend from the factory. Rusting out in the engine compartment, paint bubbling on the hinges...all in all a fun vehicle to drive, poorly made and a general piece of junk. Steering column buttons don't work, multiple pushes to get them to work...try cancelling cruise control without hitting the breaks..."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

ITS EVERY JEEP LOVERS DREAM JEEP

By on Thursday, August 06, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 94,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "NEW LS1 V8 AND 6 SPEED TRANSMISSION,SOUND SYSTEM,"

Cons: "30,000 IN CUSTOM ACCESSARIES. NO EXPENSE WASSPARED"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I JUST GOT A CHEVY LS1 V8 WITHA 460LE GM 6 SPEED ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION PUT IN IT. IT HAS A 3INCH SUSPENSION LIFT ON IT WITH 34.8X11.9 NITTOTRAIL GRAPPLERS ON IT.THE FRONT HAS A SMITTYBUILT STUBBY,STINGER BUMPER WITH A SET OF LED LIGHTS ON EACH SIDE.THE INTERIOR HAS BLACK/RED NEOPRENE SEATCOVERS THAT MATCH THE EXT.CUSTOM GRAPHICS. IT HAS RUBICON RAILS DOWN THE SIDES FOR PROTECTION AND BLACK 18INCH RIMS.IT HAS A 8INCH SONY TOUCH SCREEN DVD WITH DVD PLAYER,SURROUND SOUND,POLK AUDIO 6.5INCH MIDS AND TWO KICKER COMP R 12INCH SUBS. SOUND CLARITY IS EXCELLENT WHILE THE BASS IS TIGHT,INT.RED LEDS.DUAL 3INCH BLACK EXHAUST EXITING THE BACK BY MAGNAFLOW. THE LS1 SMALL BLOCK 5.3 PRODUCES 300 H.P.AND THE 6SPEED IMPROVES FUEL ECONOMEY BETTER THAN THE STOCK 3.8 V6 WITH 4SPEED AUTOMATIC.ITSBEEN MY MONEY PIT TOY NOT AMISUSED MUD MACHINE.SELLING MY JEEP AND 2014 CHEVY SILVERADO 4DOOR TRUCK TO BUY A NEW CORVETTE STINGRAY.IM GOING THROUGH A MIDLIFE CRISIS!"

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Good buy

By on Wednesday, August 05, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Motor, 4x4, gas mileage"

Cons: "Sound system , hard seats, side view mirrors"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"So far so good. AC is excellent,cools down very fast. the V-6 is an excellent motor. No problems in the snow season 2014-2015. It went through snow that was up to the bottom of the doors with no problem. No sway or skidding in snow. The 3 piece hard-top is a great idea, on and off in minutes. The automatic transmission is smooth. If you want it can mimic a five speed by pushing the shift lever to the right. Has cruise control. The speaker system is fair at best. The tweeters on the dash look awful. Seat is a bit hard. Standard side view mirrors are awful. At night light reflections are much too strong."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

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