Earlier this month a test mule for the next-generation Jeep Wrangler was spied testing, however much of the new technology was hidden underneath the skin of the current version of the off-roader. Automotive News recently caught a similarly disguised test mule out and about, however they noticed one interesting charachteristic that may go unnoticed by many.
The Wrangler test mule they photographed was about 10-inches longer than the current model, evidenced by a grey extension piece just aft of the A-pillar. The new chassis is longer in order to accommodate the larger eight-speed automatic transmission destined to replace the 5-speed auto-box used in the current version of the Wrangler.
As we reported last time a Wrangler test mule was spied, the model is expected to retain its two solid axles and its 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine. Improvements in fuel economy may come through minor engine updates, a more lightweight construction and, of course, the aforementioned eight-speed automatic transmission.
The next-generation Wrangler is expected to enter production at Jeep’s Toledo, OH assembly plant in 2017. In the meantime, get a peak at its slightly larger frame over on Automotive News.