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Old 10-26-2009, 02:39 PM   #1
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Preferred year group?

I'm shopping for a 4.0L I6 TJ with fewer miles on it than the one I currently own. I could use some help narrowing down my search. Let's say one year group I'm considering is 2000 - 2002 and the other is year group 2003 - 2006.

- what are the differences (if any) between jeeps in the two groups?
- is one year group more desirable than the other in terms of technical / mechanical differences or ability to mod for off-road 4-wheeling?

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Old 10-26-2009, 03:04 PM   #2
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i would go for the newer ones if you want the manual because of the 6 speed.

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Old 10-26-2009, 03:26 PM   #3
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My buddy in college had an 03 and I have an 02. The only thing I liked more about his was the aerodynamic side mirrors. We were identical offroad. 03 also had a lot more plastic junk in the interior that I didn't think was necessary.
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Old 10-26-2009, 03:45 PM   #4
Knows a couple things...

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Lots of changes with the 2003 model year. Like if you want an automatic tranny, that's when Jeep replaced the venerable 3-speed automatic used through 2002 with the newer 4-speed automatic. I'm not so sure I like the current 4-speed automatic though I'd rather have it than any of the manuals. 2000 and newer have the current distributorless ignition which was a nice upgrade. However, none of the years after 1997 have enough benefits over my '97 to have ever made me feel like trading it in for something newer.
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Old 10-26-2009, 03:47 PM   #5
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The 4 speed auto in the 03-06 TJs is something you have to get used to. This is so because of the incredibly tall 0.69 overdrive ratio it has. With 30 inch tires it kicks into OD at about 45-50 mph and you either let off the gas or step on it more to disengage or by turning off the switch. Its a good tranny when you get used to it...very clunky but its not bad.
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