It may seem a bit odd to see a charging cable plugged into the side of a new 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe, but it’s just as efficient and durable as ever! This wilderness-ready and trail-conquering machine has awesome traditional Jeep staples such as removable doors, a manual transfer case, and live axles, and after 13 years of development, is now available as a more environmentally friendly and appealing model. It’s the second-most powerful Wrangler closely following the 392 V8 and is by far the absolute most fuel-efficient.
With a fully-charged battery, the 2021 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 4xe gets up to 60 mph in just 6.8 seconds, all while being the heaviest in its segment at around 5,322 pounds. The 17.3-kWh battery under the rear seats is capable of 21 miles of pure electric range, and hybrid mode avoids draining the battery completely. A small amount of charge is always required so the Jeep can still function as a hybrid, as it is not able to run in electric mode when the battery runs out.
You can go into all-electric mode in 2 High, 4 High Auto, and 4 High Part-Time, and the onboard computer will automatically kick you back into hybrid mode. The front anti-roll bar disconnect feature works in 4 High Auto and 4 High Part-Time, so you still can get over some pretty massive hurdles using only electric power. A Wrangler Rubicon situated in 2 High can go places most trucks and SUVs cannot, and once you get into 4-wheel drive, you can really tackle the harsh demands of anything the trail has thrown in your way.
The Motor Trend crew took the 2021 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 4xe out to a local off-road park. They took on the most challenging trails known for steep hills, oversized rocks, and deep ruts with a nearly fully-charged battery. If you suddenly run into the need for low gear and differential locks, it has 181 lb/ft of torque and 471 lb/ft when the engine revs all the way up to 3,000 rpm.
The sound in full-electric mode is similar to an air compressor, and you also enjoy the feeling of the gears changing underneath you during each switch. The throttle and brake response have been precisely engineered to perfection. After putting the 4xe through various challenges that the average off-road driver would encounter, the testing crew determined it is “an important first step toward the future of both the Wrangler and the fun had during off-roading in every scenario!”