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A 368-hp four-cylinder Wrangler?

by Chris Vander Doelen on

The horsepower rating for the optional turbo-powered Wrangler launching in Toledo next month is a hot topic of debate in our forums. Is the recently reported number for real, or just a typo?

Either way, the horsepower for the new Hurricane Four engine revealed by FCA in a filing to NHTSA in mid-September is a shocker – WAY higher than many expected or predicted for the new 2018 JL/JLU, and higher than our last report, in which we believed power would merely top 300 hp.

2018 Jeep Wrangler JL

According to the filing (a 2018 VIN decoder), the base engine in the new Wrangler will be the Pentastar V-6 3.6, rated at 285 hp.

But the filing also lists a turbo option, an in-line four-cylinder engine rated at 368 hp. About time, say the fans. Typo, scoff the cynics, who seem divided as to whether it’s actually 268 hp, or 368 pound-feet.

Given FCA’s recent commitment to ever-higher-performance in Dodges, let’s assume they’ve decided to share some of the obsession with Jeep. We know the new four is a GME, part of the Global Medium Engine family. We know the Alfa Romeo version of the four produces 276 hp and 295 lb.-ft. of torque, and we’ve heard they have more turbo-charging tricks up their sleeve.

The production launch of the four-door hardtop Wrangler JLU is now scheduled for Monday, November 13, with a reveal at the Los Angeles Auto Show two weeks later. The hardtop two-door JL launches in mid-February, 2018. The soft tops follow the hard shells by a month in each case.    HurricaneWrangler JL

Chris Vander Doelen was Opinion Editor and columnist of The Windsor Star until December, 2016; he was the Star's automotive reporter and columnist for seven years, and had also covered the political and gambling beats. With his wife, Veronique Mandal, he wrote the book Chasing Lightning (1999). Chris won a National Newspaper Award in 1997 and more than a dozen provincial news awards. There is a Chrysler 300 in his driveway.

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