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Old 11-24-2013, 09:17 PM   #1
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2,000 mile road trip. Jeep or rental?

Hey guys, just picked my new '14 Wrangler Unlimited last week. I gotta say, first Jeep and I love this thing! I am coming from a '13 Tacoma that was a lemon. I'm very impressed with this Jeep. So, I have already had plans to rent a car for a 2,000 mile road trip, round trip down Florida for Christmas. Im wondering if I should cancel my car rental plans and just take the Jeep. How about long term comfort on the road? I know I can save some gas money and help recoup some of the cost for car rental. The cost isn't an issue for me. I'm wanting to save the mileage and wear and tear on the Jeep as well as travel down the road in something more comfortable for me and my 2, 50 lb dogs. Jeep or rental?

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Old 11-24-2013, 09:26 PM   #2
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Take the jeep 100%

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Old 11-24-2013, 09:30 PM   #3
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The answer is obvious to me. Take the jeep, I am planing on doing a long road trip(4000 miles) this year in one that I guarantee is a lot less comfortable and fun to drive on the highway then a new and unmolested jeep.

But if you are that worried about putting miles on it.....
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:33 PM   #4
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You don't say if it is dual top or ST...and the only reason I ask is IF the weather cooperates it could be a GREAT trip!!! You and 2 50lb dogs IMO it is a no brainer. Your dogs will be way more comfortable in the back of the Jeep with the back seats folded down. you can stow your gear under the folded seats on the back floor and the dogs won't be able to get at it to easy...if you got ST on should be able to use sun rider feature part of the way...and the dogs would like the more air coming through the jeep. save front seat floor space for the dogs treat leashes and snacks water/ dish give them a couple old blankets or dog beds and enjoy the ride...IMO what are you gonna rent that is better suited for the trip...a mini van?
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:39 PM   #5
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Thanks guys for the input. I was mostly concerned about the ride for extended periods of time, which should really be no prob. It's a hard top. I was planning on getting some dog beds and let them stretch out in the back.
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:46 PM   #6
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Take the jeep. For a 2k trip, I am guessing you are from the NE or Midwest. You can take the freedom panels off in Florida. I've made a few 1k round trips in my 2013 JKU, it's comfy enough, especially with the all terrain stock tires. Use the money you would spend on the rental towards some mods.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
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I drove from Myrtle Beach,SC to Miami earlier this year in my JKU and it was a great trip. I averaged around 18 mpg round trip and loved the weather. The seats in the newer jeeps are comfy and we had no problems.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:54 PM   #8
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Check out the recommended breakin period in the owners manual. I want to keep my jku a long time so followed it closely. If you take the jeep make sure you've taken the panels off, etc. ahead of time to make sure there are no issues.
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:04 PM   #9
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I've made many 2-4k trips in my 08JK in very good comfort and utter joy.

Even without dogs.

In fact, I'm in Oregon and just LOOKING for a reason to drive to Florida in my JK.

I figure gas would run 7000 miles/18.5 mpg=378 gal x 3.15/gal= $1190 PLUS about $100/night/hotel plus $30/day road food means I'm only about $3000 short for my trip.

Yours will cost less driving your own Jeep.

Did we mention your top comes off?
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:07 PM   #10
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Thanks guys for the input. I was mostly concerned about the ride for extended periods of time, which should really be no prob. It's a hard top. I was planning on getting some dog beds and let them stretch out in the back.
Adding to what has been said, taking the panels off and using the storage bag would still allow plenty of air flow for the dogs.....and probably still be "allright" give them plenty of room. Only question I would have, and wouldn't matter what vehicle you took, is I am assuming 2 day trip minimum, hotels that allow dogs? Have you planned for that?

Varying your speed during the trip would be good for break in purposes, and should cause no issues for the Jeep. Depending on your route and the speed you travel, IMO in stock form 18mpg is to be expected with some POSSIBILITY of seeing as high as 20mpg driving 55-60mph on a State Highway and would vary the speed nicely.

Good Luck!!
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:14 PM   #11
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I did a 5800mi road trip across the us and back with my brand new jku hard top. Florida to Cali with a stop in nm and a lot of driving in between. I barely had it broken in before we set off, I really can't complain about the ride one bit. Louder than my 4runner was but not bad under 70mph. Just one thing to note, driving faster than 70 starts to take a hit on gas big time . ( really sucked when the speed limit was 80 in west Texas.) on the way back we decided to just sit the cruse on 70 the whole way even if speed limit was higher. I do have the 3.73 and 29s so your numbers might be different.
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:57 PM   #12
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You have one month to break the engine in. I'd suggest driving at least 150 miles a week for the next three weeks just to give it some break in with varying speeds, after that I would take it for the trip. We seriously though about buying a Jeep from Field's but couldn't make it work with our schedules. I think the next Jeep we buy will mean a trip to Chicago though, we'll buy it right away and drive in Chicago/Wisconsin a couple weeks to break it in before heading back to OKC.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:15 AM   #13
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We drove our 2013 from South Florida to Austin, Texas at the end of August. Running TeraFlex 2.5" coil lift and 33" DuraTracs and hard top on. Didn't even count the gas mileage, but the ride itself was great! Except for not wanting to rack that many miles up on it again, I'd take the jeep on a trip back to Florida in a heartbeat!
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:31 PM   #14
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Thanks to the input everyone. I'm in OKC as well. With all my driving, she's got 700 miles on her now. Ive been babying it. I did tow my trailer and 4 wheeler (1,000 lbs total) an hour and a half both ways at 60 mph mostly flat route. I got me some trek armor seat covers ordered for the trip. Getting pretty excited!
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:50 PM   #15
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Congrats on your new Wrangler and the Trek Armors. Take the Jeep on your road trip you will absolutely enjoy it.

I drove mine to FL also and got 20.5 mpg.

Get some Molle bags and put on those Trek Armors.
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:03 PM   #16
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I'm driving from CO to MO in the Jeep then meeting up with family and doing a rental for MO to FL for Christmas. Everyone must be going to FL for Christmas this year

From Denver to Kansas City is boring as hell though, a whole lot of nothing
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:08 PM   #17
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If you take the Jeep and you are planning to put the rear seat down, look for something fill the gap where the seat folds down. That gap can trap a paw/leg.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:29 AM   #18
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In July 2012 my wife and I drove from central Maryland to Anaconda, Montana in our 2010 JKU. It had 20K on it when we left. We had the rear seat folded down and the cargo area pretty packed. Comfort was not an issue at all.

The only problem we encountered was the automatic transmission not able to hold highway speeds in mountain or hilly areas without constantly downshifting. Mileage in those areas dropped down to the high 16's - low 17's. On flat roads in the midwest and upper plains states we were knocking out 22 - 23 mpg at posted limits.

On the return home, we did a bonzai run from central Wyoming to home in 39 hrs. driving across I-80 and I-70. We were still getting 22 - 23 mpg until the reached the mountains.

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Old 11-26-2013, 06:50 AM   #19
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For me it would not be that simple---you could rent a car which will be more comfortable--maybe not a fun but more comfortable--- that gets better gas mileage that would essentially be free for the savings in the gas mileage (assuming 18 vs 30 MPG it is about a 200 dollar savings) plus you keep the miles off your jeep. If the rental car craps out you make a call and they bring you a new car. Not saying that it would not be a funner trip in a jeep but no will you really be going places on vacation that the car will not go?
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:34 AM   #20
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The last post makes good since, but I will add this. I do a lot of traveling and I can't tell you the number of times I have been somewhere and said out loud "Man I wish I had brought my jeep"
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:38 AM   #21
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The last post makes good since, but I will add this. I do a lot of traveling and I can't tell you the number of times I have been somewhere and said out loud "Man I wish I had brought my jeep"
I hate when I think that let alone even say it...and it does happen more than I care to admit.....but usually means, I wish I had the TJ......
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:07 AM   #22
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You guys are road warriors. Any trip over four hours driving, I get dropped off at the airport
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:10 AM   #23
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You guys are road warriors. Any trip over four hours driving, I get dropped off at the airport
I understand what you are saying but at the same time, with having to show up "early" and waiting for delayed planes/ connecting flights and layovers, if I can not get a direct flight out of INDY I will usually drive......but anymore I don't fly that much.....for me most of the fun comes from the drive there....Hence the JEEP!!!
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:51 AM   #24
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Depends....Im the first person to promote road trips, but what are you going to do in Florida? I doubt you are going to wheel, and Florida IMHO doesn't have any wheeling worth putting 4000 miles on your rig, and all that gas. If you said Moab, Montana, Idaho, British Columbia, California, Arizona, Alaska, etc, I'd tell you that you'd be crazy not to take the jeep...but Florida? Rent some 40mpg econobox and tuck the jeep away to sleep. Just my opinion....save the mileage for your next vacation, and drive the jeep to Moab/Colorado. Thats where they belong.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:56 AM   #25
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Depends....Im the first person to promote road trips, but what are you going to do in Florida? I doubt you are going to wheel, and Florida IMHO doesn't have any wheeling worth putting 4000 miles on your rig, and all that gas. If you said Moab, Montana, Idaho, British Columbia, California, Arizona, Alaska, etc, I'd tell you that you'd be crazy not to take the jeep...but Florida? Rent some 40mpg econobox and tuck the jeep away to sleep. Just my opinion....save the mileage for your next vacation, and drive the jeep to Moab/Colorado. Thats where they belong.
This is the truth. I have to drive my jeep at least 6 hours north to get to any really good wheeling in N. Georgia, Tennessee, etc. Unless you just like to go mud bogging or ride swampy trails, there's not much here.

The reason you might want your jeep here for Christmas is you have a good chance of riding topless in December and depending on where you go in Florida (mostly NE Florida) you can drive on the beaches. If so, drop me a note, and I can direct you to a few really nice beaches that you can drive that require 4x4.
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Old 11-26-2013, 12:15 PM   #26
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re: "From Denver to Kansas City is boring as hell though, a whole lot of nothing "

actually if you watch carefully on the north side of the Fwy about halfway between the 2, you can actually SEE a place that for SURE is exactly the Edge of the Earth where the 4th uncelebrated companion ship to the Pinta/Nina/Santa Maria fell OFF.....

re: "flying" I abandoned that in 1990 and haven't missed out on anything essential in my own travels.....I suppose taking the dogs might affect the ticket cost as well.

Largely travel is a matter of personal taste.

There's nowhere I'd prefer to go without my Wrangler....it's a bit like a Batman Utility Belt, except you drive IN it rather than carry it. Dogs included.
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Old 11-26-2013, 12:54 PM   #27
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My husband bought his '13 JK Rubicon first week of September and at the end of October, we drove from SC to Philly, drove around the area all week and to Jersey and back before heading home. All in all it was about a 1500 mile trip. He had taken the backseat out when he got it, so that opened some room in the back so we just piled our stuff on one side and it gave our two dogs (both under 20 lbs) free roam on the other side. The ride was really comfortable and we did really well with gas mileage. Little cabin noise because we had the soft top - I had a conference call I had to take on the road and it was a bit difficult to hear but that was combo cabin noise and phone. Overall, it worked out well for us so I would definitely say don't waste your money on a rental and break that bad boy in!
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Old 11-26-2013, 01:05 PM   #28
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The last post makes good since, but I will add this. I do a lot of traveling and I can't tell you the number of times I have been somewhere and said out loud "Man I wish I had brought my jeep"
^^^^This^^^^

And my $0.02...

Back in '96 I drove a '92 Wrangler (soft top) from Anchorage, AK to Dallas, TX (3800 miles).
In the Wrangler, we had the adventure of a lifetime.
In a rental car, I think it would have been a 6 day chore.
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Old 11-27-2013, 03:41 AM   #29
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You guys are road warriors. Any trip over four hours driving, I get dropped off at the airport
LOL! 4 hours north and I'm barely getting to Dallas. 3 hours west and I'm just at San Antonio.
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Old 11-27-2013, 05:06 PM   #30
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LOL! 4 hours north and I'm barely getting to Dallas. 3 hours west and I'm just at San Antonio.
Tell me about it, we allways travel at least 5 hours to get any descent wheeling in.

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