Wrangler enthusiasts are eagerly waiting for Chrysler's new Pentastar
V-6 to drop into the iconic 4x4. Not only will it be more powerful, but
it will also do a better job at sipping gas.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the two-door 2012 Wrangler is rated at 17 mpg city and 21 mpg highway with both the five-speed automatic and the six-speed manual transmissions. The four-door Unlimited model with the manual gets one mile per gallon less in city driving (16/21 mpg), while the auto is rated at 16/20 mpg (city/highway). Our last report on the Pentastar two months ago penned the figures at 16/23 mpg, which wasn't too far off. The current 2011 Jeep Wrangler stuffed with the outgoing, V-6 is rated at 15/19 mpg.
The EPA's site also confirms that the ancient four-speed automatic will give way to a five-speed gearbox, which should pair nicely with the Pentastar engine. Official power figures aren't out yet, but the gains are expected to be even more dramatic than the improved fuel figures. We expect it to match or be close to the Grand Cherokee's output, rated at 290 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. The current, minivan-sourced 3.8-liter engine puts out just 202 hp and 237 lb-ft.