I absolutely love my Jeep Wrangler, though lately I am getting that sinking feeling that this particular automotive relationship has run its course. I’ve had my Wrangler longer than I’ve had any other car, and while it has been mostly trouble free, it also isn’t exactly a comfortable ride. The new Wranglers, however, are a lot more high-tech than my archaic ’92 YJ and have a ton of create comforts like power windows, air conditioning, so on and so forth.
Now you can add a diesel engine to the features of the new Jeep Wrangler. Jeep will be adding a 2.8 liter turbo diesel engine to its lineup… at least over in Europe. Seriously Jeep? Where’s the love?
I’m on a few Jeep forums, and one topic I see come up time and again is the desire for a diesel engine option on the Wrangler. The reasons are many, though mostly it boils down to more torque and better gas mileage. Some enterprising individuals have done diesel engine swaps. One of my favorite swaps sees a Mercedes W123 diesel engine swapped into a Wrangler, with many users reporting gas mileage of 30 mpg or more. In a Wrangler! There is a veritable gold mine for Chrysler, should they add a diesel engine to the Wrangler… and they finally are. The problem? For now, it looks like it will a European-only powertrain.
This 2.8 liter turbo diesel engine makes my sturdy 4.0 liter I6 look like something from the stone age. Making 200 horsepower and and up to 340 ft-lbs of torque when fitted with a five-speed automatic transmission. The six-speed manual makes due with just 302 ft-lbs of torque. This diesel engine gives the Jeep a 13% increase in fuel economy. Going by the Wrangler’s current EPA rating of 15 mpg/19 mpg, this would bump fuel economy up to about 17/21. And that is with start/stop technology that keeps the engine from idling while at a stop.
Actually, that fuel economy is not that great. I get better than that in my ’92 Wrangler. It’s not like Chrysler is going to bring this to the U.S. anyways… or will they?
Maybe I’ll hold on to it after all.