F'n New Guy here, this is only my third or fourth post, and I wanted to share a little about what I have learned. My main goal is to help, in a very small way compared to the knowledge put forth by others on here, other Newb's like myself. The following are purely MY interpretations of words I have read, and purely MY observations as a new Jeep owner (2013 Rock Lobster Unlimited Sport S), and I in no way want to offend or misguide anyone with my words.
Also, when I started doing research a couple of months ago prior to my purchase, I found that there are very different types of forums out there on the interwebs. This one, in MY opinion, is a much better fit for ME. Not for everyone else. ME.
On some forums: 3.21 Gears!! You have a complete piece of S#&T!! It is borderline dangerous on the road!! You could kill someone trying to drive that thing around with any tires larger than a donut spare from a 1992 Chevy Corsica!!
Here: Take the cyanide tablet out of your mouth, put the pistol down on the table, and back away. They are not the BEST gears, 3.73 is better, 4.10 is better than that, but it is not the end of the world. I personally have 3.21 gears, it is one area that I probably failed to do enough research on prior to my purchase. However, even knowing what I know now, when I drove on the lot that day to "honey, I just want to look and maybe take a test drive", once I saw "Lucille" in her Rock Lobster color, it was all over. With the other two in that color on that lot that day, this still was and is my choice. I will make do, its all a matter of perspective at the end of the day. It is not a powerhouse, but for the love of F#&K, I have a Wrangler with 285 H.P.!! I remember years ago that I worked with a young lad who had a 4 cylinder Wrangler with 31's, and I could outrun him. On foot. With a blister on my right big toe.
One some forums: Wranglers get HORRIBLE mileage!!
Here: None of us bought them for the mileage, but more to the point, what did we all come from before our beloved? For me, this was an upgrade for mileage, quite a bit actually. I traded in a 2005 F-150 4X4 with 33X12.5R18 Toyo MT's on it. Had an exhaust and a K&N FIPK. Making corrections with mile posts for the oversize tires (never got a programmer), it NEVER got over 12 MPG. In fact, if I looked at the gas pedal wrong or uttered the words "fuel mileage" anywhere in its presence, it dropped by two more. In Lucille, the maiden voyage on Thanksgiving of a 130 mile round trip and the remaining tank used around town, my average by my own hard calculations matched the onboard almost perfectly, 17.6 vs 17.9. Thats pretty darn good for a 285 HP four wheel drive anything. My F-150 had 300 HP and weighed 1200 lbs more for perspective sake.
One some forums: The stock sound system sucks!!
Here: Well, that is sorta the same. However, it is easy to upgrade, and fairly inexpensive as well. Some perspective, I bought my bride to be a new car this year, and the sound system is just ok. But think about what it would take to upgrade it versus ours. Think about what it would take to upgrade most new cars these days. Her stereo is in the shape of a "V" for cryin' out loud! We have a double din. Big deal. And more room, with the unlimited at least, than anyone would have thought possible just a few short years ago. I came from a few BMW's in my past, and good lord, the last 5 series I had, the stereo was in 2 pieces, both pieces were like 1-1/2" tall and like 14' wide. NOTHING fit in there without looking like a very poor afterthought during a drunken tirade in a trailer park.
One some forums: Get lockers!! 35's or go home!! Take your brand new rig and find some mud, and rocks, and water, and tree branches.
Here: This is actually true, I read a post the other day where someone was asking for everyones opinion about a mod he (or she, still pretty new around here) had done. Like the first three replies were, "It's nice, but what do YOU think". Seriously. But not in that "flowers and butterflies and everything is wonderful and nobody has an opinion" way either, it was done with a nice blend of opinion and respect for others. Pretty impressive. The great thing about these vehicles is how many things they can do, and how many things can be done. From the simple mod of putting polyfill in the sound bar, to locked front and rear on 40's with a 500 HP Hemi, they are the foundation for your imagination. And wallet. Which the Wrangler will destroy. God help all of our relationships with both our money and our significant others.
So in conclusion, this is what I have taken away so far. Everytime I hit the key to lock the doors in a parking lot and I head into a store, at lease once, but usually more, I turn around to look at it, because a Jeep can stir something in the gearhead in all of us. The leaps and bounds of progress that a basic utility vehicle has made is astounding. I have power windows, power locks, power mirrors......on all doors that COME OFF!! I have 285 HP in a Jeep and it is the original (read: not swapped) motor!! You can do ANYTHING to these vehicles, and everyone one of them end up being unique, even the mall crawlers (like mine will be for a couple of years)!! There are NO stupid questions on here!! It is YOUR Jeep!!
Hopefully, maybe, someone is looking and researching like I was not too long ago, and I can help them. Then I have paid it forward, and that was my goal. If not, hopefully still no harm done. Thanks for letting me speak my mind.