We managed to get ourselves an invite to drive the new Jeep Wrangler recently.
The email invitation read;
“We would like you to be among the first to drive this exciting new car, and invite you to join us for a special drive event in the Lake District. There will be opportunities to drive the cars on- and off-road.”
Off-road you say? We love getting down and dirty so didn’t need asking twice.
Jeep are very proud of their heritage. They started making vehicles in 1940 for the Army and have been making civilian vehicle since 1945. That’s some pedigree.
They describe their all-new Jeep® Wrangler as the ‘Go Anywhere, Do Anything’ 4×4 that blends together excellent on-road performance with legendary off-road capability.” We’ll be the judge of that.
We won’t go mad about the details. We’ll tell you more about that after we’ve had one on test for a while. What we will say is that, depending on spec, it includes two advanced four-wheel drive, active, on-demand full time systems – Command-Trac and Rock-Trac – plus Tru-Lock electric front- and rear-axle lockers, Trac-Lok limited slip differential and electronic front anti-roll bar disconnect. We can tell you first hand that this stuff is unbelievable. It makes you feel invincible, like you could drive anywhere, over anything.
The format for the event was simple. Pick a car, get in and follow the leader.
Ardent Off Road looked after us and guided us along the course, helping us through the most challenging parts and keeping us safe.
These guys are amazing. They run off-road tours and training sessions for the public and emergency services etc, they run holidays and events in the UK and abroad and lots more. They are really good guys and absolute experts when it comes to anything off road.
Our day consisted of 3 different off road sessions with some road driving in between.
The first off road session was a very challenging, uphill rock crawling section, the second was woodland, heavily rutted with big rocks all over the place and the third was even more rocks with steep steps and big drops.
The Ardent guys kept things moving, guiding us through the perils but kept it safe and fun…..lots of fun.
Our car was a Jeep Wrangler Sahara 2.2 diesel 2 door and was really really nice. The Sahara is the entry level and crucially, comes with road biased tyres. No big chunky, nobblies here, they’re standard fit on the Rubicon.
Despite this, it was truly awesome off road. I mean, really impressive. Ardent took us up some really technical and challenging routes; rock crawling in the rain, fording in the woods and much worse. Even on road biased tyres our Wrangler didn’t struggle. It’s was jaw dropping, breathtaking and more fun than you can imagine.
It’s easy to use too. The auto gearbox was simple, just put it in drive and select 4×4 low ratio, then go and get dirty. Some modern 4×4’s seem to have a million settings. The Wrangler has some buttons like hill decent but we didn’t use them. It is very simple to use and unbelievably effective.
We’ll get one on test and do you a road test review. If it sunny, we’ll even show you it’s other party trick and take the roof and doors off too for a bit of fresh air fun.