What with Sam having driven the new Wrangler just a couple of weeks ago and Mopar having brought its fantastic Wrangler 1941 to Geneva, my appetite for uncompromising American 4x4s has been thoroughly whetted. It seems I wasn't the only one, either.
A number of commenters on the first drive signaled that they liked the car, but couldn't find a way to rationalise its near £50k price tag. Scrof took a shot at finding a half priced alternative in last week's Trade Off, settling, naturally, on a Land Rover Defender. But what if only a Jeep will do?
That's where today's Spotted comes in. At £35,955 it still isn't cheap, but manages to represent a significant saving versus the new model nonetheless. That's despite being virtually new itself; a 2018 three-door version with just 4,800 miles on the clock. Most importantly, though, it's a Rubicon. Named after the 22-mile off-road trail, rather than the Italian river of no return, the title of Rubicon is only awarded to the most capable Wranglers in the range
Powered by a 3.6-litre petrol V6, the Rubicon outputs 285hp and 260lb ft of torque via either a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission (the UK was auto only). There are 17-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in 32-inch mud-terrain tyres as standard, locking front and rear axles, Jeep's Rock-Trac 4x4 system featuring beefed up suspension, an electronically disconnecting front sway bar, rock rails and LED lights.
This being the Recon Edition it trades cloth seats for heated leather ones with red seat belts. It also gains a heavy-duty Dana 44 front axle, cast diff covers, power dome bonnet and a premium soft-top which the hard top seen here can be switched out for. Throw in the remainder of the factory warranty, which runs for two more years till 2021, and what you're looking at is one of the most able, best equipped Jeeps you're likely to see without spending twice the price on some heavily modified rock-crawling juggernaut. We know where our money would go.
SPECIFICATIONS - JEEP WRANGLER RUBICON
Engine: 3,604cc, V6
Transmission: 5-speed automatic, all-wheel drive
Power (hp): 285@6,400rpm
Torque (lb ft): 260@4,800rpm
First registered: 2018
Recorded mileage: 4,800
Yours for: £35,995