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Old 05-01-2013, 01:37 PM   #31
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Well, I wouldn't do this on regular basis, 3500lbs with 3:21, everything wil turn slower with more stress, generating more heat, not good on long term for the mechanic, on that side, the question is, do you care about your invesment or not.

Based on this I don't know why they say that a 2dr with 3:21 is 1000lbs while a 4dr is ok up to 2000lbs, it just doesn't make sense for me, so a 2dr with 3:21 should be able to handle 2000lbs also, although I can understand the jump from 2000lbs to 3500lbs going from 3:21 to 3:73 on the 4 dr.

Last weekend I towed my 1500 lbs camping trailer with my 2012 2dr with 3.73, I almost couldn't feel it behind, on steep hills, sure I had to downshift. About the general handling, I have to say that I was glad to have the 3:73, the 3:21 would have reminded me the handling I had with my previous 2006 Suzuki GV. That Suz was rated at 3500lbs and believe me it was underpowered to haul that trailer, it was making it but not fun, I didn't have the same feeling with my JK, I bearly couldn't feel it behind.

About safety, it's another story, if you stay within the limits, the only thing you need for safety is brake controler if you go over 1000lbs, the gearing has no importance there.

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Old 05-01-2013, 01:56 PM   #32
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Still not sure how I'm incorrect on my last post. According to the info you gave, the only difference is gearing. Gearing shouldn't impact the safety or towing capacity of the JKU.

So unless there is something different on the springs that come with 3.73 gears, a JKU with 3.21's should be able to safely tow 3500lbs with no issues (outside of being sluggish due to gearing).

I understand brochures and spec sheets may read differently, but in reality it would seem this is only a spec sheet difference in tow capacity and not a safety/capability difference.

My guess is Jeep doesn't like the sluggishness of the 3.21's loaded at 3,500lbs so they put 2000lbs to prevent complaints from buyers. I guess there could be some additional wear or overheating potential with 3.21's and the transmission, but again probably Jeep being cautious.
The axle ratio is the difference, and in most vehicles, it does matter.

Chrysler says 3.21's on the 2012-13 4 doors are limited to 2000 pounds. If you want a "legal" 3500 pound tow rating, you need at least 3.73's.

My honest opinion is that the 3.6 along with the new 5 speed auto is geared well enough to tow 3500 pounds with the a 3.21 axle ratio. The 2011-12 Cherokee and Durango have/had the same engine and 5 speed auto, and could tow 5000 pounds and 6200 pounds respectively on a 3.07 axle ratio. I fought that battle all last year and have the scars to prove it. But it does not matter. Chrysler says 3.73's for 3500 pounds on the Wrangler.

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Old 05-01-2013, 01:59 PM   #33
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Well, I wouldn't do this on regular basis, 3500lbs with 3:21, everything wil turn slower with more stress, generating more heat, not good on long term for the mechanic, on that side, the question is, do you care about your invesment or not.

Based on this I don't know why they say that a 2dr with 3:21 is 1000lbs while a 4dr is ok up to 2000lbs, it just doesn't make sense for me, so a 2dr with 3:21 should be able to handle 2000lbs also, although I can understand the jump from 2000lbs to 3500lbs going from 3:21 to 3:73 on the 4 dr.

Last weekend I towed my 1500 lbs camping trailer with my 2012 2dr with 3.73, I almost couldn't feel it behind, on steep hills, sure I had to downshift. About the general handling, I have to say that I was glad to have the 3:73, the 3:21 would have reminded me the handling I had with my previous 2006 Suzuki GV. That Suz was rated at 3500lbs and believe me it was underpowered to haul that trailer, it was making it but not fun, I didn't have the same feeling with my JK, I bearly couldn't feel it behind.

About safety, it's another story, if you stay within the limits, the only thing you need for safety is brake controler if you go over 1000lbs, the gearing has no importance there.
All 2012-13 2 door Wrangler's can handle 2000 pounds regardless of gearing or tranny. Are you looking in the owners manual? A lot of those still had the 2007-2011 tow chart in them.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:19 PM   #34
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Maybe they are concerned about warranty issues. Also, I wonder whether there may be states where you could be found negligent or even guilty of a crime for towing over the rated capacity? Your point re: the importance of gear ratio is well-taken from a practical perspective, but it may not have much bearing from a legal perspective if you got into an accident while towing over capacity.
Me personally, for the legal reason I would never tow over stated capacity (2,000 w/o Max Tow). However, when Jeep's own documents (Online, Brochures, Owners manual, etc) are all conflicting, it kind of sets the consumer up for failure on the legal side of it. I'm sure Jeep would be found guilty in a court of law if someone was towing 3500lbs with 3.21's, lost control and did some damage since half of their documentation is incorrect. With a good lawyer anyways.

Hoping that never happens, but for consumers like the OP, if they wouldn't have done additional research they could be in this exact scenario. Thinking they are covered up to 3500lbs and it really should have only been 2000lbs.
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Old 05-02-2013, 12:46 PM   #35
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It voids your warranty if you tow more than 2000 lbs with the 3.21 ratio on the Wrangler Unlimited (4dr).
I was going keep the 3.21 based on my conversations with the dealership.
When I shared the information I received with Jeep directly. They told me that the information was incorrect and so was the website and 2013 brochure. Jeep was able to look up all the options on my Jeep by the vin number.
A few days later they left a details message on my phone telling me not to exceed the 2000 lbs. because the 3.21 gears could not handle the additional load. The Jeep technical engineer told me that the 3.73 were stronger. So apparently its not the additional half turn of rotation but the physical strength of the gears that gives you the 3,500 lb limit.
Jeep also mailed me the owners manual that has the correct information in it. They also gave me a website that has the correct information.
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Jeeps customer service number: 800-992-1997
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Old 05-02-2013, 01:23 PM   #36
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It voids your warranty if you tow more than 2000 lbs with the 3.21 ratio on the Wrangler Unlimited (4dr).
I was going keep the 3.21 based on my conversations with the dealership.
When I shared the information I received with Jeep directly. They told me that the information was incorrect and so was the website and 2013 brochure. Jeep was able to look up all the options on my Jeep by the vin number.
A few days later they left a details message on my phone telling me not to exceed the 2000 lbs. because the 3.21 gears could not handle the additional load. The Jeep technical engineer told me that the 3.73 were stronger. So apparently its not the additional half turn of rotation but the physical strength of the gears that gives you the 3,500 lb limit.
Jeep also mailed me the owners manual that has the correct information in it. They also gave me a website that has the correct information.
www.media.chrysler.com
Jeeps customer service number: 800-992-1997
Tech Support called me so I don't have that number.
By this logic 5.38 or even higher would be stronger right? It's actually not true. The ring and pinion gets weaker as you go up in gear ratio because they are trying to fit more teeth on the same ring and pinion making each tooth weaker. 3.21 is actually stronger but it just puts extra stress on the engine due to the lower ratio.

It can void the warranty to tow over but that's hard to prove cuz they'll never see what you tow so it would be very hard for them to actually void your warranty for this. The only legitimate reason to not go above the tow capacity is safety.
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Old 05-02-2013, 01:39 PM   #37
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By this logic 5.38 or even higher would be stronger right? It's actually not true. The ring and pinion gets weaker as you go up in gear ratio because they are trying to fit more teeth on the same ring and pinion making each tooth weaker. 3.21 is actually stronger but it just puts extra stress on the engine due to the lower ratio.

It can void the warranty to tow over but that's hard to prove cuz they'll never see what you tow so it would be very hard for them to actually void your warranty for this. The only legitimate reason to not go above the tow capacity is safety.
I agree, the more mechanical advantage you ask of a gear, typically the weaker the gear becomes given a similar form factor. I am really wondering about this "technical engineer" that you spoke with, I seriously doubt Jeep has differential engineers available by phone for customer service issues.
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Old 05-02-2013, 02:28 PM   #38
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The tech at the dealership also told me not to tow more than the 2000 lb with the 3.21. He said that it will cause damage. If Jeep wasn't concern with this I don't think they would have paid to upgrade my Jeep to the 3.73 for free. I purchased my 2013 Sahara in March with all available options. Mine came with the Tow Group Package. I found out that it had the 3.21 gears last week, after reading the forum. Otherwise I would have thought I had the 3.73. Thanks ...
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Old 05-02-2013, 04:08 PM   #39
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They were correct about the "incorrect" information. Jeep made a mess of the tow ratings. The website is incorrect (in places), the owners manuals is incorrect.....just awful.

But they lied to you about the strength. That is backwards. 3.21's would be "stronger" than 3.73's (less teeth = thicker teeth).

Also, it would not explain how the GC and Durango have greater tow ratings with the same engine and tranny, but on an 3.07 axle ratio. (The answer has a lot more to do with brakes, center of gravity, hitch design, cooling, ect...)

The only reason I have 3.73's is for the tow rating. I fought with Jeep about it, but in the end, I gave up and ordered 3.73's (I originally wanted 3.21's...and would prefer something like 3.55's).
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Old 05-02-2013, 05:02 PM   #40
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its not about the drive-train.
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Old 05-02-2013, 05:33 PM   #41
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If Max tow only adds the 3.73 rear axle over the regular tow pkg, why can you order it on a jeep with a 4.10 rear end?
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Old 05-02-2013, 05:53 PM   #42
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If Max tow only adds the 3.73 rear axle over the regular tow pkg, why can you order it on a jeep with a 4.10 rear end?
Once you start digging into the Wrangler buying process, you will realize that Max Tow on a 4 door Rubi is one of the biggest rip-offs that Jeep has going.

Jeep charges you the full "Max Tow" price, but the only thing you get is the hitch and harness. You can get that for $90 bucks shipped from Qtec and put it on yourself (or even less from Amazon).
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Old 05-02-2013, 06:12 PM   #43
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Once you start digging into the Wrangler buying process, you will realize that Max Tow on a 4 door Rubi is one of the biggest rip-offs that Jeep has going.

Jeep charges you the full "Max Tow" price, but the only thing you get is the hitch and harness. You can get that for $90 bucks shipped from Qtec and put it on yourself (or even less from Amazon).
Absolutely. Max tow is my only regret. I can't believe I paid whatever the heck I paid for that on a Rubi that came with 3.73's. To add insult to injury I then had to upgrade to 7 pin wiring. MAX TOW IS A WASTE OF MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 05-02-2013, 10:52 PM   #44
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Absolutely. Max tow is my only regret. I can't believe I paid whatever the heck I paid for that on a Rubi that came with 3.73's. To add insult to injury I then had to upgrade to 7 pin wiring. MAX TOW IS A WASTE OF MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!
Make sure clarify this to be a waste of money on the Rubicon. On my Sahara it was not a waste of money. I wanted 3.73 gears which cost $195. If I had gotten the Quadratec setup you're looking at $100 bucks for that. For another $100 ($395) I got mine with the gears I wanted, hitch/wiring I wanted, installed at the factory, covered by warranty, and built into the price of the Jeep, so not outlay out of pocket afterwards. $100 savings to do it myself wasn't worth it on a $35k Jeep. Now if I had gotten a Rubicon, it might have been a different story since you're basically paying $295 for a hitch and wiring.
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Old 05-02-2013, 11:55 PM   #45
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Make sure clarify this to be a waste of money on the Rubicon. On my Sahara it was not a waste of money. I wanted 3.73 gears which cost $195. If I had gotten the Quadratec setup you're looking at $100 bucks for that. For another $100 ($395) I got mine with the gears I wanted, hitch/wiring I wanted, installed at the factory, covered by warranty, and built into the price of the Jeep, so not outlay out of pocket afterwards. $100 savings to do it myself wasn't worth it on a $35k Jeep. Now if I had gotten a Rubicon, it might have been a different story since you're basically paying $295 for a hitch and wiring.
Uh ... MAX TOW ON MY PARTICULAR JEEP WHICH HAPPENS TO BE A RUBICON IS A WASTE OF MONEY!!!!!
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Old 05-03-2013, 09:03 PM   #46
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Uh ... MAX TOW ON MY PARTICULAR JEEP WHICH HAPPENS TO BE A RUBICON IS A WASTE OF MONEY!!!!!
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Old 05-03-2013, 11:34 PM   #47
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FWIW I called Jeep today and told them how confused I am about the towing capabilities of my 2DR 3:21 with tow package.

I gave them my Vin # and they said I could tow up to 2,000 lbs. I have the tow package and with that comes the transmission cooler. So, if your 2DR does not have the tow package then it is rated for 1,000 lbs.
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:52 PM   #48
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Jeep dealerships are not allowed to change the gear ratio on 2013 Jeep Wranglers.

After the dealership installed the 3.73 gears in my Jeep. They couldn't change the program.

I requested help from the forum and was told about a Procal programmer.
The dealership said they were not allowed to use it because it would void my warranty.

When they contacted Chrysler they were told that they had to change the gears back to the 3.21. and they would locate a new Jeep with the 3.73 gears in it.

It took 2 weeks but they found a Sahara fully loaded with the 3.73 gears.
They swapped Jeeps with me even though I had the other Jeep for 2 months and had put almost 3,000 miles on it. The new Jeep only had 100 miles on it.

Jeep obviously knows there is some liability due to the confusion of the Tow Package wording in the 2013 brochure and their web site that states that the Tow package includes the 3.73 gears.

I'm just glad that Jeep/Chrysler did the right thing.
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:43 PM   #49
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FWIW I called Jeep today and told them how confused I am about the towing capabilities of my 2DR 3:21 with tow package.

I gave them my Vin # and they said I could tow up to 2,000 lbs. I have the tow package and with that comes the transmission cooler. So, if your 2DR does not have the tow package then it is rated for 1,000 lbs.
That isn't quite correct.
There is no tow package that comes with a tranny cooler. That goes for all JK's made. 2012's and 2013 auto's all come with external coolers regardless of tow package. All 2 door 2012-13 JK's have 2000 pound tow ratings regardless of gear ratio or tranny.
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:44 PM   #50
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Jeep dealerships are not allowed to change the gear ratio on 2013 Jeep Wranglers.

After the dealership installed the 3.73 gears in my Jeep. They couldn't change the program.

I requested help from the forum and was told about a Procal programmer.
The dealership said they were not allowed to use it because it would void my warranty.

When they contacted Chrysler they were told that they had to change the gears back to the 3.21. and they would locate a new Jeep with the 3.73 gears in it.

It took 2 weeks but they found a Sahara fully loaded with the 3.73 gears.
They swapped Jeeps with me even though I had the other Jeep for 2 months and had put almost 3,000 miles on it. The new Jeep only had 100 miles on it.

Jeep obviously knows there is some liability due to the confusion of the Tow Package wording in the 2013 brochure and their web site that states that the Tow package includes the 3.73 gears.

I'm just glad that Jeep/Chrysler did the right thing.
That is a awesome resolution.....congrats.

Yeah, Jeep really screwed up the tow ratings, and still have not fixed it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:51 PM   #51
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Tow Group Package - Jeep website states that the Tow Group Package includes the 3.73 gear ratio on the 2013 Wrangler Unlimited to allow maximum towing of 3,500 lbs.

2013 Wrangler Unlimited | Towing Capability and Towing Capacity | Jeep
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:56 PM   #52
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Tow Group Package - Jeep website states that the Tow Group Package includes the 3.73 gear ratio on the 2013 Wrangler Unlimited to allow maximum towing of 3,500 lbs.

2013 Wrangler Unlimited | Towing Capability and Towing Capacity | Jeep
Almost correct
There is the Tow Package and then there's the Max Tow Package
The max has the 3.73s
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:31 PM   #53
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Hasn't anyone mentioned the obvious reason for low towing weights? It is the first thing you should learn about towing.

Never tow anything over 1,000lbs with a short wheelbase vehicle. Never! Jeeps were never intended to tow anything real with beyond the small ammunition trailer. Wheelbase is everything when towing.

Wheelbase keeps you tracking straight. Imagine towing a very lite travel trailer that happens to be 3,000lbs but 25' long. Its a windy day on I40 east of Kingman (If you ever get up the hill), you come out of one the cuts made when the highway was built and the wind will push you right off the road... It happens nearly every day in that area and there are windier parts of the country.


If you tow at all with a Jeep it lite and avoid tall box trailers. Towing isn't for Jeeps no matter what the owners manual and the salesman told you...
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:47 PM   #54
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Hasn't anyone mentioned the obvious reason for low towing weights? It is the first thing you should learn about towing.


Never tow anything over 1,000lbs with a short wheelbase vehicle. Never! Jeeps were never intended to tow anything real with beyond the small ammunition trailer. Wheelbase is everything when towing.


Wheelbase keeps you tracking straight. Imagine towing a very lite travel trailer that happens to be 3,000lbs but 25' long. Its a windy day on I40 east of Kingman (If you ever get up the hill), you come out of one the cuts made when the highway was built and the wind will push you right off the road... It happens nearly every day in that area and there are windier parts of the country.

If you tow at all with a Jeep it lite and avoid tall box trailers. Towing isn't for Jeeps no matter what the owners manual and the salesman told you...
My 08 & 13 JKU'S don't agree with you. Both have been pulling a 3300# TT with no problems. Of course they are both properly equipped wit WD hitch systems, electric brake controllers, and friction sway control. Not to mention 3.73s
The 08 has about 25K towing miles, often in high wind conditions. Hasn't run off the road yet. The 13 only has IK towing miles, but can barely feel the load behind her.
And your experience with JK Towing is,,,???
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:06 AM   #55
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I've towed plenty of 3,500 lbs trucks with both my 12 2dr and 13 4 door. The only reason the unlimited is rated higher is because of its longer wheelbase. They are just rating 2 doors lower so some dumbass doesn't jackknife his jeep towing 3,500+ in the rain. Max tow is basically just a class 2 tow hitch and a gimmick. My rubicon came with the max tow and of course the anti sway being a 13. I normally pull 4k lb trucks with no sweat on a dolly. A moron that goes by the manual will tell you not to tow more than 3,500 due to his ignorance, but don't worry jeep just doesn't want that same kind of person towing heavy weight incase they have to react to a situation in which 3,500 lbs can be hard to control. Just be cautious and you can tow up to 4,500 lbs safely
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:30 AM   #56
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Hasn't anyone mentioned the obvious reason for low towing weights? It is the first thing you should learn about towing.


Never tow anything over 1,000lbs with a short wheelbase vehicle. Never! Jeeps were never intended to tow anything real with beyond the small ammunition trailer. Wheelbase is everything when towing.

I thought we were talking JKs here not Willys. Hell when was the last time a jeep was deigned to haul an ammo trailer?

My jeep has a wheelbase of 119 inches and weighs in at 6200lbs. That is definitely enough to handle the other 2000 pounds or so that it is rated at. I don't remember the exact numbers and don't care enough to look them up since I seldom tow with my jeep. When I do though it handles great.

I can defiantly see how a 4 door that is closer to stock wich means it is almost 1000 pounds lighter and only 3 inches shorter could handle 3500 pounds all day long.Now of course there is no way I would haul any kind of box load with a 2 door in windy conditions since they come in under 100inches. (95/96 something like that).


You are right that wheelbase is why the #s are as low as they are on the ratings but you act like we are talking about 70 inch wheelbases or something.
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:09 AM   #57
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I thought we were talking JKs here not Willys. Hell when was the last time a jeep was deigned to haul an ammo trailer?

My jeep has a wheelbase of 119 inches and weighs in at 6200lbs. That is definitely enough to handle the other 2000 pounds or so that it is rated at. I don't remember the exact numbers and don't care enough to look them up since I seldom tow with my jeep. When I do though it handles great.

I can defiantly see how a 4 door that is closer to stock wich means it is almost 1000 pounds lighter and only 3 inches shorter could handle 3500 pounds all day long.Now of course there is no way I would haul any kind of box load with a 2 door in windy conditions since they come in under 100inches. (95/96 something like that).


You are right that wheelbase is why the #s are as low as they are on the ratings but you act like we are talking about 70 inch wheelbases or something.
I'm not so sure. The Grand Cherokee with a 3.6 is rated for 5000lbs and its wheelbase is shorter than a JKU if I read charts correctly (114 vs 116 on the JK). I pull 4200 with mine and it is no problem - either with performance or handling.
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:46 AM   #58
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There are a bunch of reasons for the low tow ratings. The 2012-13 Wrangler has the same engine (3.6) and 5 speed auto as the 2011-12 Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango. Those can tow 5000 pounds and 6200 pounds respectively. Part of the issue is cooling, weight, center of gravity, wheelbase, brakes, hitch design, ect....

Basically, the engine and tranny can tow far more than the tow ratings, but it does you no good if you can't control or stop it.
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Old 05-18-2013, 09:31 AM   #59
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I'm not so sure. The Grand Cherokee with a 3.6 is rated for 5000lbs and its wheelbase is shorter than a JKU if I read charts correctly (114 vs 116 on the JK). I pull 4200 with mine and it is no problem - either with performance or handling.
Haha it seams I left a few words out of my post(no big suprise). I ment the wheel base is why the 2 door is rated so much lower then the 4 door.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:19 PM   #60
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There are a bunch of reasons for the low tow ratings. The 2012-13 Wrangler has the same engine (3.6) and 5 speed auto as the 2011-12 Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango. Those can tow 5000 pounds and 6200 pounds respectively. Part of the issue is cooling, weight, center of gravity, wheelbase, brakes, hitch design, ect....

Basically, the engine and tranny can tow far more than the tow ratings, but it does you no good if you can't control or stop it.
Larger trailers all have brakes as state laws require them at as little as 1000 lbs and certainly above 3000. As far as stopping goes, you are much worse off with a 2K trailer with no brakes than 4 K with regardless of the tow vehicle.

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