2013 Jeep Wrangler Comfort & Quality

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Comfort & Quality
The 2013 Jeep Wrangler can be had either as the two-door Wrangler, or as the four-door Wrangler Unlimited. Between these two models, the Wrangler Unlimited models adds 20.6 inches of wheelbase (116 inches), giving them the most cargo space ever in a Wrangler, and a larger rear-seat design.

That leaves the Unlimited feeling like a pretty spacious utility vehicle inside. There's just enough backseat space for adults in back, and while we've called front seats merely adequate in the past, Jeep has re-contoured both the front and rear seats, with larger off-road-friendly bolsters, for 2013. So we'll update you as soon as we get some extended time with one.

Last year Jeep brought the dash and trim of the Wrangler up to the 21st Century—it no longer feels as if it was pieced together military contractors raiding Chrysler's parts bin and skimming the top. But there are some details that you might either find endearing or off-putting. For instance, the doors completely lack detents, with only a fabric retainer strap limiting their travel. And on manual-transmission models, there's no dead pedal on the far left to rest your foot; instead, the three pedals are large and widely spaced; surely, you could drive the Wrangler with hiking boots. And don't forget that, unlike any other vehicle on the market, the Wrangler lets you (in private, low-speed use) fold the windshield forward. 

The 2013 Wrangler rides like a truck, but noise and vibration are well under control for such a rugged rig.

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. Jeep keeps improving its soft top design, and the new body-color hardtop that was introduced on the Sahara last year has been expanded to the Rubicon.

Ride quality is still not one of the Wrangler's more charming features--it's firm, quite busy, and there are nearly always plenty of secondary motions, so you're always well aware of the road surface. This is one of the few vehicles (other than heavy-duty pickups) that still offers a live front axle; larger bumps met mid-corner, for instance, sometimes produce a full-frontal shudder. The short-wheelbase Wrangler models are slightly bouncier.

Over the past couple of years Jeep has introduced a host of improvements to reduce noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH), and you'll find the new Wrangler far quieter inside if you've had any time with Wranglers of the past. It's more tolerable for commuters than it used to be, for sure. There's a little more gear whine and road noise if you opt for the manual transmission, but considering the sharp-edged exterior there's not all that much wind noise, even at 70 mph.

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