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2009 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Review

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The Car Connection Expert Review

Doors or no doors, hardtop or soft, the 2009 Jeep Wrangler is unlike any other SUV.

TheCarConnection.com's editors have driven the new Jeep Wrangler in order to give you an expert opinion. And to bring you a comprehensive review that wraps up the best of what other reviewers had to say, TheCarConnection.com's SUV enthusiasts researched a wide range of reviews.

The Jeep Wrangler returns for 2009 with the same iconic features, removable doors and a fold-down windshield, that's made the vehicle famous, as well as the body-on-frame chassis and solid front and rear axles that established the Wrangler as one of the most capable SUVs.

With room for five adult passengers, the Wrangler Unlimited model remains the only four-door convertible SUV on the market. For 2009, 20.6 inches were added to the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited's wheelbase, stretching it to 116 inches and giving it the most cargo space ever offered in a Wrangler, as well more passenger room and comfort with a larger rear seat. Unlike the four-wheel-drive-only configuration of the standard Jeep Wrangler, the Unlimited is also available in two-wheel drive.

The Jeep Wrangler is two years old in its current form but retains all the classic lines of Jeep's past. The 3.8L V-6 engine produces 202 horsepower and comes with a choice of either manual or four-speed automatic transmissions. Fuel economy on rear-drive, manual-transmission models is as high as 16 mpg city, 21 highway, which is good for the Wrangler lineup but not particularly economical. The engine feels strong, but it still makes more noise than you might expect of a more traditional SUV.

The removable tops are one of Jeep's best features—though they allow lots of road noise in the cabin, they can completely open the cabin of both the two- and four-door models, turning a hardtop Jeep into a convertible SUV.

On the highway the Wrangler can be a jittery, bouncy ride with plenty of road noise and imprecise steering. Off-roading toughness of both Jeeps is assured by live axle front and rear suspensions, with 10.2 inches of ground clearance and the availability of a four-wheel-drive system with heavy-duty axles, locking differentials, Rock-Trac transfer case with extra-low gearing, electronically disconnecting stabilizer bar, and knobby BF Goodrich tires on Rubicon versions. Anti-lock brakes and stability control are now standard, with side impact airbags available optionally.

The 2009 Jeep Wrangler scores five-star ratings for front and side impact protection. Two-wheel-drive models have four-star rollover protection, while four-wheel drivers have a three-star rating. New safety features for all 2009 Jeep Wranglers include Hill Start Assist (HSA) to prevent rollback on a graded surfaces and Trailer Sway Control (TSC), which monitors vehicle movement relative to the intended path and activates the Electronic Stability Program (ESP) if the trailer begins to sway outside set parameters. Tire pressure monitors are now standard on both short- and long-wheelbase Wranglers, and remote start is a new option for 2009.

Air conditioning and cruise control are standard on most models, and Sirius Satellite Radio is an option, as are a navigation system and a music hard drive.

The Car Connection Consumer Review

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Monday, April 13, 2015
For 2009 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

There's nothing else like it

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I've been a Jeep Wrangler owner for 18 years, so I'm very accustomed to their particular strengths and weaknesses. I had one of each of the past three model generations (each generation is about 10 years, with... + More »
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Friday, July 24, 2015
2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 4WD 4-Door Freedom Edition *Ltd Avail*

Very fun vehicle to drive, more then one expects for this type of vehicle.

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Even though the limited edition Jeep Wrangler Unlimited are a bit difficult to find as you want it spec'd, its a great SUV. Impressed with the quietness of the interior and the ride is better then expected... + More »
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Wednesday, April 29, 2015
2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 4WD 4-Door Rubicon

The Rubicon is rugged and stylish.

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I purchased the Wrangler Rubicon with quite a few dealer installed extras. Even with all the added equipment it drives and handles well. The off road capabilities are fantastic. Jeep has a reputation for... + More »
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