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Jeep PH launches updated Wrangler Sport

This new base model ushers in the fresher face-lifted versions of the iconic SUV

You have to be eagle-eyed to see what has changed here. PHOTO BY RED SANTIAGO

After a year of waiting, Inchcape Philippines, the official distributor of Jeep in the country, has some news for you. The good one is this: The new Wrangler has finally reached our shores. The not-so-good one is that it’ll only come with one variant, the four-door Sport.

So, what has changed? Let’s start with the exterior. While the new model looks almost identical to the one it replaces, several upgrades were done to the iconic SUV’s bodywork.

The satin-black grille and the all-LED lighting make the front look fresh yet familiar. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

First is a ‘new’ fascia. The seven-slot grille now comes in satin black. The LED daytime running lamps complement the headlights and the fog lights.

There are now trims that eliminate openings on the front fenders that old Wranglers used to have. This seamlessly meets the bumper for a cleaner yet still imposing look.

The windshield is now made with Corning Gorilla Glass for better scratch resistance when the going gets tough on the trail.

The blacked-out details make this SUV look even more badass. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

The sides are adorned with several matte-black Jeep badges. The same goes for the fenders, the door handles, and the side-view mirrors. On all four corners are 17-inch gray all-aluminum wheels shod with 245/75 all-terrain rubber.

Gone are the pole-type aerials for the radio. In its place is a window-printed antenna. The three-piece removable hardtop also comes in matte black. Everything else remains the same, including the vehicle’s imposing stance.

Granite Crystal, Hydro Blue, and Sarge Green are our favorite hues for the new Wrangler Sport. PHOTOS FROM JEEP

There are eight colors to choose from: Firecracker Red, Granite Crystal, Silver Zynith, High Velocity, Hydro Blue, Bright White, Black, and our favorite, Sarge Green.

The interior has been left mostly untouched, save for the center screen. Thankfully, the old, tiny seven-inch Uconnect touchscreen is now gone. In its place is a more modern and bigger 12.3-inch touchscreen.

The interior continues to be utilitarian, yet very much comfortable. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

Speaking of the infotainment system, this now comes with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you can be free of wires while keeping smartphone integration features. This also comes with GPS navigation, off-road info pages, and a customizable home screen.

For personalization, there are five user profiles to choose from. This keeps your music preferences, apps, and climate control settings. Retained is the nine-speaker Alpine audio system. The charging ports now feature USB Type-C that can juice up your devices four times faster.

The sweet-sounding Alpine audio system can be controlled with this high-resolution widescreen display. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

The new Wrangler also got a load of tech goodies. It now has advanced driver-assist systems like adaptive cruise control, brake assist, electronic roll mitigation, forward collision warning, ParkSense rear park assist system, and a backup camera.

Completing the list of safety features are several airbags, antilock brakes, electronic stability control, hill-start assist, traction control, and trailer sway damping.

The new Wrangler Sport now comes with a myriad of advanced driver-assist systems. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

Under the hood is the same 2.0-liter, turbocharged in-line four engine and eight-speed automatic transmission. The powertrain combo still makes 268hp and a healthy 400Nm of torque.

The differentials are also unchanged, which feature Dana M186s at the front and M200 at the rear. It also comes with off-roading goodies like skid plates for the transmission, transfer case, and fuel tank. These make the new Wrangler Sport a competent trail vehicle even in stock form.

The small-displacement turbo powertrain makes for a sweet drive. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

The biggest surprise has to be the vehicle’s pricing. The Sahara, which was the entry-level model before, has breached the five-million-peso mark. But the new Sport can be had for just P4,790,000.

Yup, the windshield is made with the same material as your phone’s screen. PHOTOS BY RED SANTIAGO

Enthusiasts may miss the Rubicon and other variants, but do not fret because other trim levels will be sold here soon. For now, you can visit Jeep’s dealerships in Alabang, Greenhills, San Fernando and Clark in Pampanga, and Cebu to see the new Wrangler Sport in the metal.

So, do you like this new Wrangler better than the old one?

Red Santiago

A jack of all trades, Red is passionate about cars, motorcycles and audio. He sometimes drives for a ride-hailing app company—just because he really loves driving.