We've been hearing a ton of little details about the upcoming, all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler. It's going to have an aluminum-intensive body, available in two-door, four-door, and, finally, pickup truck styles. We've of heavily camouflaged test mules. And now, thanks to the folks , we have a speculative rendering of what the final product will look like.
Like the 2020 Ford Bronco illustrations we debuted earlier this year, these 2018 Jeep Wrangler drawings aren't official Jeep illustrations. They're speculative sketches, penned by skilled and knowledgeable people who nonetheless aren't affiliated with Jeep in any way, and published here with JL Wrangler Forum's permission. But they synthesize all of the details we've heard about the new Wrangler's design into one coherent, convincing design. Let's take a closer look.
At first glance, this sketch looks very similar to the current-generation JK Wrangler that's been around since model year 2007. That's not a mistake: the Wrangler is one of the most successful vehicles in Fiat Chrysler's entire lineup, and Jeep likely doesn't want to mess with success by altering the styling too much.
But the details make the difference. Check out how the headlights jut into the outer-most grille openings, a tribute to the Wrangler's predecessor and inspiration, the CJ. The grille is no longer flat: the top portion leans back, a design element last seen on the TJ Wrangler (1997-2006). This, the more raked windshield, are likely intended to improve the Wrangler's aerodynamics. This rendering includes bumpers that reach up to close the gap with the front fenders, another aero trick previously only seen on European-market Wranglers. Front turn signals have moved from below the headlights to the leading edge of the front fenders.
At the rear, the JL Wrangler Forum renderings show a more raked, smoothed greenhouse. X-pattern taillights echo the jerry-can-inspired design currently seen on the Jeep Renegade.
The roof design has been a particularly important question with the new Wrangler. Rumors hold that Jeep will replace the current removable roof with a permanent roof structure featuring pop-off top and side panels. This would improve structural rigidity, improve crash safety, and potentially reduce weight by eliminating the separate roll bar structure currently used. The JL Wrangler Forum rendering shows how this removable-panel roof design could be incorporated into the four-door Wrangler Unlimited as well as the pickup truck, a design that coincides with renderings we've previously published.
We expect most of the hallmark features of the current Wrangler to stick around in the new model. Details like the exposed door hinges (allowing for Jeep's trademark removable doors), the tailgate-mounted full-size spare tire, and the overall shapes of the windows and door openings, all contribute to a design largely similar to the current Wrangler.
Under the hood, we expect an available turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder making as much as 300 horsepower, hooked up to either an eight-speed automatic or, praise heavens, a six-speed manual. That hood, interestingly, gave us a clue about how similar the styling would be: A current Wrangler inadvertently got what seems like a 2018 Wrangler prototype hood from an auto parts recycler that, when installed on a 2014 Wrangler, almost fit save for a two-inch overhang.
For a more in-depth explanation of the design decisions that went into these speculative, unofficial, but good-looking renderings, . And for even more details on what we expect to see in the upcoming Jeep Wrangler, here's everything we know so far.