There’s talent to back up the rugged styling, as the four-wheel-drive machine’s off-road ability has to be tried to be believed. Whatever the terrain, the Wrangler will find grip, especially in top-spec Rubicon trim which features locking differentials in both axles. In addition to this, thanks to short overhangs, front and rear, steep slopes are no problem. There are two engines to choose from – a 2.0-litre petrol or a 2.2-litre diesel (both have four-cylinders) – and while neither are the V8 you might hope for, they’ll get the job done when the going gets muddy.
But just like a Defender, the Wrangler’s off-road prowess comes at the expense of on-road manners – namely suffering from a slightly bouncy ride. That said, the latest Wrangler is easier than ever to live with, even if it trails big comfy SUVs like the Land Rover Discovery.
Interior space isn’t great, either, although the design is an attractive blend of retro and utilitarian. The Wrangler is offered in two or four-door body styles, with a hard top or optional soft top roof.
We don't rate the Wrangler as a good car to buy (though for serious off-road use it might be worth a look), but the iconic styling that it shares with its WWII predecessor and the no-nonsense approach in its design mark it out as a great American car.
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