It was an open secret, but now we have confirmation that the 2021 Jeep Wrangler will get a V8 engine as an option. Fans of the model can send a big thanks for that to Ford and its Bronco. Competition, after all, is often a spur to innovation.
The engine in question is none other than the brand's famed 392 engine, a 6.4L V8 offering 470 hp. It’s already in use in the 392 versions of the Dodge Challenger, Charger and Durango models, as well as in the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT.
For 2021, the V8 will be offered with the Rubicon version of the Jeep Wrangler. Its power, which also includes 470 lb-ft of torque, will be transmitted to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission that also features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Jeep says its Rubicon 392 will be able to speed from 0-96 km/h in just 4.5 seconds. The quarter-mile? Only 13 seconds.
Only the Rubicon version is getting the new V8, mainly because it's the only variant of the Wrangler able to withstand the added oomph of this powertrain. The Rubicon is the most capable Wrangler in the range, featuring a permanent two-speed transfer case, Dana 44 axles with electronic locking differentials, Fox branded shock absorbers, an electronic front stabilizer bar disconnect for maximum articulation, and a final drive ratio of 3.73. The model sits on 17-inch wheels with 33-inch BFGoodrich K02 off-road tires.
Not that some tweaks weren’t necessary, mind you. To accommodate the additional power offered by the V8 engine, Jeep has reinforced the model's chassis with additional steel, improved front upper control arms and cast-iron steering joints.
The Rubicon 392 features leather seats with bronze stitching to match the bronze accents on the exterior. The model also comes standard with an 8.4-inch touchscreen with menus that detail the vehicle's off-road functions, including pitch and roll, GPS coordinates and power distribution. And, as with other Wranglers in the Jeep lineup, a host of accessories will be available through the Mopar product line for maximum customization.
The price of the U.S. model is set at just under $50,000. In Canada, we should therefore expect something in the neighbourhood of $60,000 CAD, but we will get back to you with our pricing once it has been confirmed.