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Old 04-23-2014, 04:07 PM   #1
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Quick Review and Comparison of '12 to '14 JKU

I just changed from my '12 JKU Rubicon w/ 6-speed manual transmission to a '14 JKU Rubicon w/ 5-speed automatic transmission. I wanted to show a few differences between the model year and what the transmission option differences change in the vehicle.

I had my '12 for almost 18 months and 19,000 miles. The '14 I've only had for a couple of days and 150 miles so far, so this is not an in-depth review. Frankly, I don't expect that any long-term driving will change any viewpoints.

Transmission
Let's cover the quick review first of the biggest difference: the transmission. I made this switch specifically so that more of my family could enjoy driving the Jeep off-road. I have had manual transmissions on the most of the cars I've owned, but automatics are coming a long, long way these days and so I didn't feel bad about making the switch.

Clearly the 5-speed auto is a generation behind most of the industry (and given the JK is near the end of its life, this is not really a surprise), but it's overall still a good implementation. I've found gear shifts pleasing, throttle response tuned well for day-to-day and off-road, and downshifting / upshifting logic to be better than I would have expected. Throttle response does not seem to be not as crisp as the manual transmission model, but I'm not convinced this is not just my mind fooling me since I'm not in control of the gears.

I would think a sports-tune shifting program would be more enjoyable day-to-day, and I'll likely make that change at some point.

Since I live in the high-county of the Colorado Rockies, I go up and down big hills a LOT. The gear selector on the automatic shifter is super easy to use and works great. It is one of the better implementations of this I've seen in an SUV.

Of-course, the automatic comes with the hill descent control button that the manual transmission does not have, nor need.

A surprise change is the small storage tray in front of the transfer case and shifter. I'm unsure if this is a model year difference or a difference enabled in the center console because of the transmission housing size. Anyone know?
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:08 PM   #2
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Enhanced EVIC

The enhanced EVIC (the one you get if you get the Connectivity Group option) is new as of '13 and '14 and has a few simple, but useful features. They are:

Digital Speedometer - simple and nice to have. There does not seem to be a way make this the default display, unfortunately.

Tire-Pressure Monitoring System w/ a reading for each tire (but not the spare). Nice to have.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:10 PM   #3
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Vehicle Info

There is a a Vehicle Info sub-menu now that shows several useful measurements:

Coolant temperature

Oil life indicator - very nice to have compared to the “surprise!” oil change indicator the older models had. It is also abundantly clear and easy to reset this if you change the oil early, which the old system made more difficult.

Oil pressure - yay! I wish this one is was a permanent analog gauge, but this will do.

Transmission temperature - very nice to have. I’m noticing some weird readouts from the sensor, however, and I’m not sure if they are by design to keep the temperature warm when the vehicle is parked, or if it it is a readout bug. I’m thinking it is actually a bug, as I’ve noticed high temperatures even after starting that drop as soon as the vehicle starts moving.

But you know what's missing? Oil temperature!
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:11 PM   #4
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Leather Seats

The leather trimmed seams, even the non-premium ones, now include model stitching in them. Looks classier.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:11 PM   #5
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Center Console Sensor

From looking at the pictures of my ’12, this sensor was not present in the rear of my center console. Any idea what it is?
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:13 PM   #6
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Wheels

Wheels! The Rubicon got a new wheel design (were those new in ’13?) and there’s a little Jeep sticker on each of them. Fun.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:14 PM   #7
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Hood Latch Sensor

One nice difference is that there is a hood latch sensor. I know this is because of the remote start feature, but I’m not sure if this is always present if you have an automatic or only if you have remote start.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:14 PM   #8
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Horn

Another surprise difference - my ’12 definitely did not have a horn in this location. Anyone know if this is a relocation because of the transmission or just a model year difference?
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:17 PM   #9
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And lastly... color! Copperhead Pearl is a beautiful, sexy color, but I frankly still prefer Crush and the black Rubicon lettering
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcgibbons View Post
From looking at the pictures of my ’12, this sensor was not present in the rear of my center console. Any idea what it is?
This should be a light. Illuminated Cup Holders were new in 2013MY. Your center console cupholder light up as well and have a hidden Jeep grille in the middle.

Your Floor Mat retention is better, your Pinch Seem is Cut to name a few more body mods.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:34 PM   #11
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Shift into 4-LO
Notice one tap to the left and you go right to 1, tap it right it auto sticks up, hold it right it goes right to D.


You have to turn Hill Descent ON, with the button on center lower dash, illuminates over your 20MPH location, green lighted Jeep MIL, and is progressive from 1-D on the transmission. Like a Hill Decent Cruise Control.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dcgibbons View Post

Transmission
Let's cover the quick review first of the biggest difference: the transmission. I made this switch specifically so that more of my family could enjoy driving the Jeep off-road. I have had manual transmissions on the most of the cars I've owned, but automatics are coming a long, long way these days and so I didn't feel bad about making the switch.

Clearly the 5-speed auto is a generation behind most of the industry (and given the JK is near the end of its life, this is not really a surprise), but it's overall still a good implementation. I've found gear shifts pleasing, throttle response tuned well for day-to-day and off-road, and downshifting / upshifting logic to be better than I would have expected. Throttle response does not seem to be not as crisp as the manual transmission model, but I'm not convinced this is not just my mind fooling me since I'm not in control of the gears.

I would think a sports-tune shifting program would be more enjoyable day-to-day, and I'll likely make that change at some point.

Since I live in the high-county of the Colorado Rockies, I go up and down big hills a LOT. The gear selector on the automatic shifter is super easy to use and works great. It is one of the better implementations of this I've seen in an SUV.

Of-course, the automatic comes with the hill descent control button that the manual transmission does not have, nor need.

A surprise change is the small storage tray in front of the transfer case and shifter. I'm unsure if this is a model year difference or a difference enabled in the center console because of the transmission housing size. Anyone know?
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iNtErNeT_rYaN View Post
This should be a light. Illuminated Cup Holders were new in 2013MY. Your center console cupholder light up as well and have a hidden Jeep grille in the middle.

Your Floor Mat retention is better, your Pinch Seem is Cut to name a few more body mods.
Yup! I noticed those but forgot to get pictures of. Thanks.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:38 PM   #13
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Alpine vs Infinity Sound if that's worth anything, fwiw.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:40 PM   #14
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Oh! Another thing. I don't know if it is a part difference, or just something that as a quirk on my '12. The windshield washer nozzles are much more powerful on the '14.
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:08 PM   #15
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A lot of small changes happened with the 2013's.

There was an interior change (different seats, LED lights in the footwell and cupholders, the 4 tire TPMS, etc).

The automatic tranny went from being built in Germany to built in the USA...and the programming for the autostick changed.

The difference in the the windshield nozzle power is that you now have two of them (2013).

Same with the horn (Jeep went to a dual tone horn in 2013).

Mid 2013's the pinch seams were cut from the factory..I missed that by two months...bummer.

Wheels (Sahara and Rubicon) were updated in 2013.

Auto dimming reverse mirror with LED map lights became available in 2013.

2014's got the better EVIC, also got clear turn signals up front and the better floormat retention hooks.

Some really late 2012's got the premium Alpine systems, even when their window stickers said Infinity.

The hood indicator is part of the remote start package. It really pisses me off that plunger is there, but it isn't tied to the factory alarm.

At one time, Pat was working with a tech on getting the updated EVIC retro-fitted for 2013's built after a certain point. (Remember, 10A's were 2013's, and they had that EVIC)....but I have not heard anything else on it.
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:11 PM   #16
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My very very late '12 (last few days of build) had that Alpine system - so that makes sense there.

Good stuff.
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:14 PM   #17
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Oh...and...Premium soft top became available in 2013....and all 4 door soft tops got "spring assist".
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:16 PM   #18
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Just remembered a couple more...

Recommended oil changed in 2013.

Oil filter changed in 2014.
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:20 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcgibbons View Post
Oh! Another thing. I don't know if it is a part difference, or just something that as a quirk on my '12. The windshield washer nozzles are much more powerful on the '14.
Do you have 1 or 2 nozzles on your '12?
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:31 PM   #20
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i never knew or don't recall there being a change area above the shifter.... as for which orange is better....

I'm going to have to go with the Copperhead.. crush was nice but it's lacking pearl in it.
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Old 04-23-2014, 06:12 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcgibbons View Post
Oh! Another thing. I don't know if it is a part difference, or just something that as a quirk on my '12. The windshield washer nozzles are much more powerful on the '14.
I was a little shocked at how powerful they are, by far the strongest and widest spray on any vehicle I have ever owned.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:36 PM   #22
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Noticed that the rear seats now have a lever to pull them down, instead of a pull loop.
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Old 05-01-2014, 08:01 PM   #23
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Funny. I had a 2012 JKR that I owned for 18 months and 19,000 miles. I recently traded for a 2014 JKUR with tan leather and interior.

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