Parkers overall rating: 2 out of 5 2.0

The 3.7-litre V6 engine that was offered in the Wrangler when it was launched in the UK in 2007 has given way to a 3.6-litre V6 with 280bhp. Jeep Wrangler performance then, is acceptable. It deals with 0-62mph in 8.1 seconds, emitting a pleasing growl and delivering decent overtaking power with help from its five-speed automatic gearbox. There is also a six-speed manual gearbox on offer that has an identical 0-62mph time, so you might as well let the Jeep take the strain out of the clunky manual ’box.

Diesel engine

The 197bhp 2.8-litre four-cylinder diesel may not be the most refined engine around, but it offers plenty of pulling power and has more than enough grunt to make light work of off-roading. When it comes to day-to-day driving, it can be a bit of a brute, feels heavy and needs to be worked hard, but the five-speed automatic gearbox takes some of the strain out of driving. The five-speed manual was dropped due to slow demand from buyers at the same time engine power was boosted from 174bhp in 2010.

Parkers recommends

It has to be the 2.8-litre turbodiesel to be our chosen motor thanks to its better economy and lower running costs.

In off-road situations, the Wrangler is exceptionally capable. There’s loads of ground clearance, it tackles tough inclines and descents with ease. In fact there’s very little terrain it can’t cope with. Unfortunately it’s a different story on the road, where it fails to match the standards for driving set by alternatives. Entry-level models are badged Sport, though this is little more than marketing – the car is at best cumbersome and wieldy around town and at worst vague and unstable at speed.

The steering takes some getting used to – it’s vague, unpredictable and big inputs are often required. It’s a similar story with the brakes – they’re spongy and offer little feedback as to how quickly you’re braking. Although there’s noticeable bodyroll, it’s not excessive for a car of this size and height. The ride is exceptionally poor, it’s very hard and crashes over even small lumps and bumps in the road, while on the motorway it wallows.