2015 Jeep Wrangler 2-Door: Toughest “Go-Anywhere” Offroad Vehicle [Review]

2015 Jeep® Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock

The Jeep Wrangler two-door is an off-road champ with its part-time four-wheel drive (4WD), high ground clearance and rugged design. My test Wrangler had “Tank Clear Coat” paint and (optional) high-gloss black wheels, which gave it a decidedly macho military appearance. It almost looked as if it just was driven out of World War II.

There’s also a larger, roomier more comfortable four-door Wrangler, but it lacks the visual pizzazz of the two-door model and is not covered here.


Engine Power Torque Transmission MSRP Price As-Tested EPA Estimates
3.6L Pentastar V6 285 hp @ 6400 rpm 260 lb-ft @ 4800 rpm 5-speed automatic $22,995 $35,015 17 city / 21 hwy (mpg)

The price sticker for my test 2015 Jeep Wrangler “Willys Wheeler” two-door model was $22,995, but options brought it to $35,015, including an $895 destination charge.

Standard items included an automatic transmission, shift-on-the-fly part time 4WD,  transfer case skid plate, AM/FM/Comp3 with 8 speakers, tilt steering wheel with audio controls, premium instrument cluster, reclining front seats, folding rear seat and cruise control.

A $2,185 “Dual Top” option group contains soft and hard tops, while the automatic transmission costs $1,350.

Another option group contains air conditioning and an electronic vehicle information center.

2015 Jeep® Wrangler Willy's Wheeler

The ride was generally comfortable during on-road driving–something that couldn’t be said for the two-door Wrangler I drove years ago.That one was slow,  had tremendous wind noise above 50 mph and was very uncomfortable.

The 2015 Wrangler, which comes in a variety of trim levels, is pretty fast with its 285-horsepower V-6, which provides quick acceleration off the line and during 65-75 mph passing maneuvers.

However, my test Wrangler’s estimated fuel economy was mediocre for a small vehicle in its class, at 17 miles per gallon in the city and 21 on highways.

2015 Jeep® Wrangler Willy's Wheeler

Off-road performance is remarkable. The Wrangler is a mountain goat.

The 3.6-liter engine works with a six-speed manual transmission or a responsive five-speed automatic. My test Wrangler had the V-6 and automatic, which has an easily used manual-shift feature. I recommend the automatic over the manual.

There was scarcely any wind noise in the fairly quiet interior while cruising at 70 mph, despite the Wrangler’s boxy shape. But the side-supportive driver’s seat should move back more for a motorist with long legs. And front seats need more thigh support.

Backseat room is laughably tight.

2015 Jeep® Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock

Controls are simple, especially those for the climate control system. Front console cupholders are easily reached, and there’s a large covered console storage bin. But rear cupholders are plunked on the floor.

Rear visibility is poor, but a passenger dashboard grab bar and grab handles near the roof are a good idea for helping occupants stay in place when the Wrangler is being driven over rough terrain.

A high floor makes it awkward to get in or out, and trying to enter the small rear seat is a trial, even for nimble folks. At least occupants sit high for a good view of surroundings.

Pushbuttons in the outside door handles are generally awkward to use, but have been put for Wranglers for years. I wish they were eliminated.

2015 Jeep® Wrangler Willy's Wheeler

My test two-door Wrangler’s handling was surprisingly good–thanks to such features as an optional performance suspension, electronic stability control and traction control. The four-wheel disc brakes worked well and had good pedal feel.

The cargo area is small unless the backseat is folded forward. However, the tailgate, which swings to the right has a large glass top into which some items can be tossed.

Jeeps are tremendously popular. They fit in just about anywhere in the world.

Buy-ItOn the TFLcar scale of:

  • Buy It,
  • Lease It,
  • Rent It,
  • or Forget It,

I give the Jeep Wrangler a “Buy it! rating simply because it is one of the most capable “go anywhere” off-road SUVs on the market today.

Enjoy this off-road review of the 2015 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock tested on a snow and muddy Colorado trail.