I have been searching for a TJ in all the usual online places. The 4 cylinder TJ's are everywhere . Would I regret buying one with a 4 cylinder for running around in and some off roading? Really want a 6 but the 4's are priced right. IMO
10' JKU Mango Tango, TF perf. leveling kit, Rubicon shocks, 315/70/17 GY DT's, V-Tec Raptor wheels 17x9, fender trim, Warn M8000, SB front bumper, aftermarket HU and powered JBL sub., Cibie' H4 light upgrade, KC Apollo Pro's, etc, etc.
I have a 99 4 cyl 5 speed and love it...it isnt a speed demon or anything like that but it does just fine with the 4.10 gears and manual.
Theres a 4 cyl thread here somewhere, i'll try and dig it up. They do just fine off road and just fine on road...the main downfall is when you start running tires bigger than 32" when you'll notice more of a sluggish start.
I'm going to be running 31's in the next 5 months or so (pockets arent deep enough yet haha) and it'll still be great for what i do.
I have owned a 4.0 in the past, and the wife has one now. I was driving a 4.2 YJ, but the engine blew up. With that I went out and bought a 1998 2.5. A friend has one and he loves it for knocking around, and as you said, the price was right for mine. I must say it isn't as zippy as the 4.0, but it does what you want it to do. I'm told the PO of mine was a trail leader and used this Jeep to do it.
It's only an island if you look at it from the water.
I bought a 97 2.5 a little over a month ago...like you said the 4.0's just weren't in the price range...just wanted a Jeep to DD to work and back...and drop the top...mine has 179k...and engine was replaced about 50k ago...runs great...already had 2" lift...bumpers...interior...31's...was a killer deal...now waiting on my wheels to get here...from what you are saying sounds like a 4cyl will do for you...good luck...and remember Just Empty Every Pocket...
'97 Wrangler SE...Jade...2" Pro Comp Lift...33's on Polished Pro Comp Xtreme 1089's...Magnaflow exhaust...SRC Classic front/rear bumpers...Contour Sport Seats...
My YJ and my current TJ are both 4cyl. In fact I had to special order my TJ in a 4cyl. While it's no powerhouse I wanted it that way. Toooooo many speeding tickets and now I am the guy in the right lane on the interstate. When I drive the wife's turbo Mazda I catch myself doing 80 and weaving past everyone. I would rather have my license intact, not have to pay thousands in fines for points on the license, and keep my high insurance bills as low as possible.
Plus I get there when I get there.....too bad.
Retired my 94 YJ 4cyl 5spd @ 200K
Now in a 04 TJ 4cyl 5spd CV @120K+
Both as a commuter vehicle in NW, NJ
April 2012.downsized and now a 99er.
4 cyl. owner here! I bought my '97 (it's actually a '96) Jeep in 2000 with 55,000 miles on it. Now it's at about 160k. Off-road it's just fine, and has probably helped keep me from breaking more parts. In deep snow, I very occasionally wish I had more power to keep the tire speed up in 3rd gear, 4-low. But I have never been denied any trail or obstacle because of lack of power. The blasts through deep snow are usually just for fun, I have had better luck crawling and staying on top. (although some friends in Canada have even better luck with 500+hp and 46"+ tires )
Around town it's just fine, but I do wish I had more power on the freeway in the hills or with head winds. Especially with 35's and the higher 5th gear of the NV3550 transmission. But with correct tire size and gear ratios as well as keeping the Jeep light, it is very liveable in my opinion.
With all of that said, I will some day swap in a 4.0L or Magnum V8. I think the project would be fun and it would be nice to have more power on the freeway, as I live in a mountainous area. But, then again, it is kinda fun to put it to the floor and power up an obstacle in the mud or snow, and surprise everyone that didn't make it that your Jeep only has the 4 cyl. (even though the engine size had nothing to do with it)
1997 Wrangler SE: 2.5L, NV3550, NV241OR, HP30 front, Rock Jock 60 rear, 4.88s/Detroit Lockers, 35" TrXus MT, TOM WOOD 'shafts, Warn XD9000i, pollock with a skinny pedal behind the wheel