The 2023 Jeep Wrangler 4xe starts at $56,530 in the United States and at $62,090 in Canada, freight and delivery charges included.
The 4xe powertrain develops a combined 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque.
Combined fuel economy is rated at 49 mpge or 4.8 Le/100 km.
Up until a couple of years ago, the Jeep Wrangler could hardly be considered an environmentally friendly vehicle. However, that has changed as a plug-in hybrid powertrain has been added to the SUV’s engine options, and we got to sample it again in the 2023 Jeep Wrangler 4xe during this year’s AJAC EcoRun.
The EcoRun is an annual event gathering Canadian automotive journalists and fuel- or energy-efficient vehicles, aiming to promote the benefits of eco-driving as drivers try to squeeze out max efficiency, the grand prize of this friendly competition being a green-coloured jersey and bragging rights for a year.
The 2023 Jeep Wrangler 4xe’s powertrain is available only in the four-door Unlimited configuration, and offered in Willys, Sahara, Rubicon and High Altitude (U.S. only) trim levels. It consists of a turbocharged 2.0L inline four-cylinder engine, a motor-generator, an eight-speed automatic transmission integrating an electric drive motor as well as a 17.3 kWh battery pack. Combined output is rated at 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque.
The 4xe system’s city/highway/combined ratings are set at 20/20/20 mpg or 11.6/11.9/11.7 L/100 km, or a combined rating or 49 mpge or 4.8 Le/100 km when factoring in electric-only driving capability. Range in EV mode is calculated at 22 miles or 35 kilometres. Charge time takes about two and a half hours on a 240-volt outlet or about 12 hours on a 120-volt household plug, and there is no DC quick charge capability. The engine can run on regular gasoline, but Stellantis recommends premium fuel for maximum performance.
Three drive modes are available, including Hybrid that manages the transitions between hybrid and EV-only cruising on its own, Electric that prevents the combustion engine from firing up, and E-Save that conserves battery energy in situations where we would quickly use it up without reaping its benefits, such as high-speed highway jaunts. We can thus keep that energy to maximize efficiency in city driving, for example. Another button on the dashboard activates max regenerative braking, which may come in handy when going downhill to send some extra energy back in the battery pack.
During my AJAC EcoRun leg aboard the 2023 Jeep Wrangler 4xe decked out in the Willys trim level, I managed a decent 29 mpg or 8.0 L/100 km. Most of my colleagues obtained a similar result with averages ranging from 28 to 31 mpg or 7.6 to 8.5 L/100 km. That’s way better than what can be achieved with the SUV’s other available powertrains, including the 285-hp gasoline 3.6L V6, the 260-hp turbo-diesel 3.0L V6 and even the 270-hp non-plug-in turbo 2.0L I4. The Wrangler can also be chosen in Rubicon 392 trim boasting a 470-hp 6.4L HEMI V8, which is obviously at the other end of the fuel consumption spectrum.
|Average (mpg)||Average (L/100 km)|
Despite the plug-in hybrid system, the Wrangler loses no off-road capabilities, and can still tow up to 3,500 pounds or 1,588 kilograms. And despite an extra weight of about 775 pounds or 350 kg for the 4xe powertrain, the SUV doesn’t feel any heavier because, well, it already drives like a heavy truck.
Pricing for the 2023 Jeep Wrangler 4xe starts at $56,530 in the United States and at $62,090 in Canada, freight and delivery charges included. EV tax credits or rebates are available in the U.S. and Canada, depending on various factors and regions, so that’s worth checking out.
In short, the Wrangler 4xe offers all the off-road prowess, looks and versatility as the regular Wrangler does, but with a fuel-efficient, eco-conscious plug-in hybrid system that doesn’t skip on power or torque.
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