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Five Arguments for Desiring the 2-Door 2023 Jeep Wrangler

2015 Jeep Wrangler Willys 2-door in its natural habitat.

©2023 Schnell Auto, Inc.

The original Jeep debuted more than 80 years ago. It was a light and agile, 2-door military “General Purpose” vehicle (aka “GP” or “Jeep”) with a removable roof. Over time, Jeeps grew, gained more power, and added amenities, yet they never swayed from their basic design with just two doors. Everything changed in 2007, when Chrysler, Jeep’s owner, introduced the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited — a 4-door model with a stretched wheelbase.

Consumers embraced the new 4-door Jeep for its additional space, ease of accessing the second row, stability, and increased towing capacity. It wasn’t long before the 4-door Wrangler Unlimited began to outsell its 2-door sibling — a sales streak that continues today — a trend that eventually left the original 2-door a distant second choice (in 2023, the 2-door accounts for only about 10-15 percent of Jeep Wrangler sales).

Yet loyalists — those celebrating the Jeep brand for decades — still swear by the 2-door Jeep Wrangler. And, they’ve got quite a few arguments supporting their favorite. For insight, I interviewed Mark McGee, a devoted Jeep owner for decades. McGee has owned a Jeep since he was 16, and he just took delivery of a new ’24 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, a 2-door model, this week.

The 2-door Jeep Wrangler is Better Proportioned

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The Jeep Wrangler’s original design exemplified the “form follows function” motto — boxy and practical. Much like the practical Volkswagen Beetle, the proportions worked. When Chrysler stretched the frame to insert two more doors, the wheelbase grew by a whopping 20 inches, completely upsetting the original classic styling. The two additional doors and the additional side glass disrupt the established character of the Jeep. “The 2-door has a classic and timeless look,” remarks McGee. “It’s well-proportioned compared to the 4-door, which looks too long.”

The 2-door Jeep Wrangler is More Agile Off-Road

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Jeep Wranglers are renowned for their off-roading prowess, but not all are equally capable. The Unlimited’s 20-inch additional wheelbase significantly affects its off-road capabilities. First, it hurts the off-roader’s break-over angle, calculated between the middle of the underside and the tires (an excellent break-over angle means the vehicle can climb over big bumps without scraping its belly). The Jeep Wrangler 2-door Rubicon boasts a 27.8-degree break-over angle — one of the best in the industry — while a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubican has a break-over angle of 22.6 degrees, which is only slightly better than a Volkswagen Touareg.

The short wheelbase also makes the 2-door more agile. The 4-door Unlimited has a turning radius of 40.8 feet curb-to-curb, while the 2-door cuts six feet off that circle — its turning radius is an impressive 34.6 feet. “Off-road, the 2-door Jeep is very agile on a narrow windy trail, and it’s equally as easy to drive in the city, as I can pull into any parking space with ease,” mentions McGee.

The 2-door Jeep Wrangler is Lighter and Quicker

VIDEO: Why a 2 Door Jeep Wrangler is Better than a 4 Door

Thanks to its rugged body-on-frame architecture, neither Jeep Wrangler is a featherweight. However, opt for the 2-door model, and you get a Jeep that tips the scales nearly 500 pounds lighter than its 4-door sibling. Both are fitted with a 285-hp, 3.6-liter V-6 as standard equipment (optional engines include 4-cylinder turbos, hybrid powertrains, and a V8), and the significant mass reduction means the 2-door is nearly a half-second quicker in the benchmark 0-60 sprint.

The 2-Door Jeep Wrangler is Less Money

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The base price of the ’24 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon is $49,990 — $4,000 more than the $45,990 base price of the ’24 Jeep Wrangler. A $4,000 savings is significant enough for a shopper to upgrade from a Wrangler Sport S to a Wrangler Willys! The $4,000 cost savings translates to a savings of about $75/month in a traditional 60-month loan payment. “Many Jeep owners upgrade tires and wheels, and those savings are more than enough for this common improvement in appearance and per,” noted McGee.

The 2-Door Jeep Wrangler is More Exclusive

VIDEO: 5 PROS and CONS of the JEEP Wrangler | Should you buy one in 2023?
Driving With Stu

The fact that about 90 percent of Jeep shoppers are buying the 4-door model means the 2-door model is much rarer. The exclusivity may pay off in better resale value, especially as the 2-door model is sought by Jeep enthusiasts on the secondary market. “There are a lot of 4-door Unlimited models in Southern California,” explains McGee. “Owning and driving a 2-door sets my Jeep apart, as you don’t see many of them on the road. And, I’ve even had people approach me inquiring about buying my truck, as enthusiasts can’t find them on the dealer lots.”

2015 Jeep Wrangler Willys 2-door

©2023 Schnell Auto, Inc.


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