Jeep JL Wrangler: First official production images revealed

They’re finally here. Jeep must have sensed our communal desperation and has revealed three official images of the production JL Wrangler in both two-door and Unlimited four-door guise to pique our interest even further before the full-blown LA Auto Show reveal. We know these images are legitimate as they are on Jeep’s own media site and we oh-so relieved to have actual photos backed by the company itself out there in the open.
This may be among the longest and most drawn-out reveals of all time and we’re well overdue for the actual JL images to have been shown. And, right before the SEMA show at which so many products are showcased for their ever-popular line of off-roaders, Jeep has delivered.
What can we make of said images? Hit the jump for a brief analysis.

There are no real surprises here. After the slew of spy-photo-based renderings, and even the recent leaking of the Owner’s and User’s Manuals, it was no surprise whatsoever to see the finalized body is very much true to what has been predicted. It’s extremely similar to that of the its JK predecessor, what with the shape of the body itself going largely unchanged into the JL iteration, but rather the details have been ironed out and sharpened so as to make a much more chiseled, focused vehicle in the all-new Wrangler.
Much of what we can see looks great: big, arching front fenders; a more integrated roll-bar; removable doors and a folding windshield; wheels that have a ton of sidewall to them, as they should; integrated LED lights; a streamlined windshield; and, most importantly, a shape that’s instantly recognizable as that of a Wrangler. It is interesting to see that the windshield can be folded without the removal of the front portion of the roll-bar. I don’t love the front bumper, but I don’t love what pedestrian crash test standards have caused most bumpers to look like, and a plethora of aftermarket replacements will inevitably be available in the coming months to remedy said issue.

I must make note of how street-friendly the above JL Unlimited Sahara looks. It’s nearing 4Runner Limited levels of on-road-focus, that of a vehicle which has the lines and the bones of an off-roader but with the details deliberately softened for the sake of appealing to the road-going masses rather than the wheeling community itself. Things like paint-matched roof and fenders, full-length running boards, and passenger-friendly, pavement-minded tires nail this down as one for the traditional consumer that wants the versatility of a Wrangler, not that of a buyer who plans to regularly drop it into four-low and see where the suspension maxes out its articulation. The power folding top might even be secretly present on the pictured vehicle as a teaser, but we have no way of knowing.
On the red Rubicon we do get solidification in the all-important facts that the windshield will be fold-able and the doors will be removable. It is a Jeep, after all; as open-air as it can get is how it should be used and abused. The tires seem to be BFG KO2s, perhaps a size bigger than the JK tires, much more suitable for day-to-day life than the KMs they replace, and just eyeballing the profile it seems that the approach, breakover, and departure angles should all be on par with or better than those of the JK Rubicon the JL replaces. The heat-extractor hood, as we can see from the above-shot, is a nice AEV/Rubi Hard Rock-style touch as well, as is the paint-matched roll bar, and the dirt-minded JL certainly does look the part. I’m curious to hear what off-road tech (like crawl control, ascent/descent control, etc.) will be available, but from afar it looks like a serious off-roader that I’m excited to check out in person and to wheel with as well once production models hit the roads and trails.
JL order banks have opened so should you be in the market for one you can head down to your local Jeep dealer today and get in line for an early JL allotment. As the JL reveal continues we can only to wait as details, images, and further information is revealed, so stay tuned for what will inevitably continue to be the most drawn-out unveiling of all time, or at least one approaching the Dodge Challenger Demon. I’m ready to see the full thing, and even more so to drive one. 

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8 responses to “Jeep JL Wrangler: First official production images revealed”

  1. Harry Callahan Avatar
    Harry Callahan

    Seems most Rubicons and Saharas here in SoCal are piloted by top lesbians.

    1. cap'n fast Avatar
      cap’n fast

      trying to understand the meaning of “top lesbians”. please elaborate on that for us.
      i do not want to mistake your meaning as to a certain quality of Jeep owners in SoCal.
      could have many possible meanings. such as, being convertables or temporary lesbians? or possiblely upper class lesbians? or for certain qualities of lesbianship, the finest of lesbians?

      1. Monkey10is Avatar

        Could be this?:
        “On March 3, 1969 the United States Navy established an elite school for the top one percent of its lesbians. Its purpose was to teach the lost art of loving and to insure that the handful who graduated were the best lesbians in the world.
        They succeeded.
        Today, the Navy calls it Sapphic Weapons School.
        The flyers call it:
        TOP LESBIAN.”
        Why they drive Jeeps still isn’t explained. We are waiting for Harry to elaborate…

      2. Alff Avatar

        Perhaps he’s simply referring to their preferred position during lovemaking. Not being a lesbian myself, I’m at a bit of a loss.

  2. outback_ute Avatar

    I don’t think the appearance of the bumper has anything to do with pedestrian crash test regs – do they even have those in the US? I think it is pure styling because they didn’t want it to be plain black plastic IMO, to be ‘prettier’ or more appealing to non-offroad buyers. Also painted fenders/roof is not something new.
    It seems to be a fairly mild evolution from the JK, and should keep the tribe happy. It is interesting that they have separated the windscreen frame from the structural/rollover function.

  3. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    If only Land Rover could apply, ( or could have applied), this same level of continuity of design and design integrity to the Defender.
    Or maybe it doesn’t matter, outside the USA, Jeeps are just as much a niche product as Land Rovers are within it. Perhaps FCA will up their marketing budget?

  4. caltemus Avatar

    Reposting because it applies to both: I wish someone would weld a steel roof onto a JKU wrangler and take out the cage. We could have the perfect homegrown safari rig but nobody has done it.

    1. Zentropy Avatar

      I agree. It’d basically be an American Defender 110, and would sell like mad. Not everyone wants to run their Jeep open.
      Back when I had my ’77 CJ-7, I typically ran with the fiberglass hardtop, and my dad had an old SJ Cherokee that was rotting out underneath. I considered sectioning and welding the Cherokee top and hatch into my CJ, but it ultimately just seemed like too much work.