What does JL stand for in Jeep? This is a question that every Jeep enthusiast has asked himself once in his life. It can be tricky because most people might think it is an abbreviation for something. However, that is not the case. The two or three letters after the Jeep Wrangler just denote their body types and model.
It all started with the CJ which came out in 1945. This was the first-ever Jeep vehicle and the CJ stood for Civilian Jeep. In 1986, the CJ-5 was introduced and it was one of the most popular Jeep vehicles. The CJ-5 became the basis for the famous Jeep Wranglers.
Let us talk about the complete history of Jeep Wranglers. You can then understand the concept of the letters like JK, JL, TJ, CJ, etc, and the difference between Jeep Wrangler Models. As I said, the journey of the Jeep wranglers started with the CJ-5. So let us talk about the CJ first.
Jeep CJ-s were also called Willys-CJ. These were popular military vehicles during the world-war 2. The CJ was a post-war variant of the Willys military Jeep for the civilians. hence the name Civilian Jeep.
Multiple models of Jeep Cj were produced between the time period of 1945-1986 when it was replaced with the Jeep Wrangler. This Jeep vehicle was also called Jeep Wrangler YJ. It came with square headlights and a 4-cylinder or 4.0L inline-6 engine.
Jeep Wrangler YJ
Jeep YJ was the first-ever Jeep Wrangler. It came with square headlights and was produced from 1986 to 1995. Even though its square headlights made him stand out but its body was similar to a Jeep CJ with some minor tweaks.
Its interior was improved and made more comfortable and some changes were made to make it safer. The Jeep had the same leaf spring suspension as the Jeep CJ but it came with anti-roll bars that improved its safety significantly.
Jeep Wrangler TJ
The Jeep Wrangler Tj was the second generation of the Jeep Wranglers. These Wranglers were in production for a period of almost a decade from 1997 to 2006. The Wrangler TJ reintroduced the circular headlights that Jeep vehicles were well known for. Instead of a leaf spring suspension, this Jeep came with a modern coil spring suspension similar to that of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
For the 2004 model of Jeep Wrangler TJ, the company reintroduced the longer wheelbase of the Jeep CJ-6. This model was called the Wrangler Unlimited and this was the first time that the word Unlimited was used in its nameplate. This model was 15 inches longer than the standard TJ and had almost double the towing capacity.
Jeep Wrangler JK
The era of the Jeep Wrangler JK was a revolutionary period of time. This was because the first-ever 4-door model of the Jeep vehicle was introduced in 2004 under the nametag of Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited.
This Unlimited model, unlike the Jeep TJ unlimited, had a 20 inches longer wheelbase rather than 10. The Jeep JK Unlimited was a great success and three-quarters of all the newly listed Jeep Wranglers were 4-door models by the mid of 2017.
Jeep Wrangler JL
Now for the Jeep Wrangler JL, this is the fourth generation of the Jeep Wranglers and is the latest one as well. These Wranglers were introduced at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2017. If we talk about the Jeep JL dimensions, it features an exterior that is similar to the Jeep Wrangler TJ. It features a raked front grille with seven vertical slots and round headlights are integrated into it. The developers decided to remove the traditional logo from the grille.
If we talk about the Jeep JL interior, it is heavily inspired by the Jeep CJ-5 and Jeep Wrangler YJ. The front woofers are still in the lower corners of the instrument panel, and the power window controls are still in the middle. A revised three-spoke, the retro-inspired steering wheel is offered, as is a color instrument cluster display screen on better versions.
Sport and Sport “S” models are available with basic cloth seating surfaces, while Sahara and Rubicon models are sold with improved Premium Cloth seating surfaces. Overall, the Jeep JL interior is top of the market and greatly comfortable so if you can find a Jeep JL for sale, you should definitely give it a try.
Jeep Wrangler JL – A Detailed Review
Now that you understand the difference between different Jeep Wrangler models, let us give you a detailed Jeep JL review. These Jeep Wranglers are the latest and definitely the most refined versions of Jeep Wranglers. Wranglers have had a reputation of being uncomfortable on-road and not meeting expectations when it comes to on-road driving. Jeep Wrangler JL has been specifically designed to change this perspective.
And boy has it been effective. The new Jeep Wrangler not only looks new, but it is also actually new. Even tho the exterior design and Jeep JL dimensions are somewhat similar to all of the previous Jeeps, it has tonnes of useful additions to it that make it stand out. So let us give you a detailed review of some of the most iconic Jeep JL specs.
Front Fender Lights
The company built lights right into the front fenders of the JL to help with visibility, and only JLs come with these lights out of the box. This is the feature that makes it stand out the most from the other Jeep Wrangler Models.
Since this is the only Jeep Wrangler that comes with built-in fender lights, It’s a JL if you see a Jeep with little square LED lights built right into the fenders. Enhanced visibility is not the only perk of the built-in Jeep JL Front Fender lights, but they also look great as well. They are most certainly a unique concept that brings a lot of attention to your vehicle at night.
Jeep JL Interior
Jeep Wranglers have struggled with interior since the very first model. Since they are not exactly luxurious cars and are made to be of use off-road, they are not really the best when it comes to the interior. But that was until Jeep JL interior was introduced.
Even tho the Jeep Wrangler JL is also designed to be an off-road vehicle and not meant for on-road drives, it is very comfortable for what it is. The height of the chairs is very comfortable and provides a good view of the surroundings and the road ahead. The seats on both the front and back have enough legroom to be fully comfortable for a 6-feet tall adult.
How do I know if my Jeep is JK or JL? Well, you can differentiate between them by looking at their grilles. The Jeep Wrangler JL comes with a front grille that might seem identical to the Jeep Wrangler JK’s front grille. However, that is not the case. Since both the Jeep JK and Jeep Wrangler JL have a seven-slot front grille, they look identical.
But the spacing between the Jeep JL’s front grill slots is more than Jeep JK. The grills have a little curve in the center and the outer slots on both sides are bent a little because of the headlamps being integrated into them. This is also one of the key differences that you can use to differentiate the Jeep Wrangler JL from other Jeep Models.
Improved Manual Transmission
The manual transmission on the earlier models of Jeep Wrangler was not the customer’s favorite. Since the Jeeps are offroad vehicles, the transmissions were really sturdy to avoid any accidents. However, with Jeep Wrangler JL, the manufacturers have made some minor tweaks to the transmission to make it a little more suitable for use on-road. The Jeep JL’s telescopic steering wheel also allows the drivers to find the best posture for increased comfort.
Sport, Sport S, Islander, Freedom, Sport Altitude, RHD, Sahara, Sahara Altitude, Rubicon, High Altitude, and the HEMI-powered Rubicon 392 trim levels are also available. Only four-door models are available in the Sport Altitude, RHD, Sahara, Sahara Altitude, High Altitude, and Rubicon 392 trims.
For 2018, all roof systems are brand new. To accommodate the new roof systems, the inside roll bar has been rebuilt. The Freedom Top hardtop, Sun rider soft top, and Sky One-Touch Power Top are the three roof choices available on the Jeep Wrangler JL. The color-keyed Freedom Top hardtop is a hard fiberglass roof with a color-keyed design.
The Freedom Top hardtop on the new JL Jeep, like its predecessor, is a three-piece system with two removable front roof panels that allow the drivers to detach the panels without removing the entire roof.
To make it easier to remove, the front windshield, as well as some of the body panels, and the hard roof, on the new JL Jeep are now manufactured of aluminum. Aluminum is also used for the doors, making them more lightweight than prior models. The JL doors also have a grab grip on the inside, making them considerably easier to transport.
Conventional side-impact airbags and stronger B-pillars are among the safety enhancements. The Active Safety group contains driver-assist safety measures. For enhanced outward visibility, the JL has a lower beltline and bigger windows. To improve rear visibility, the spare wheel has been lowered down. Daytime running lights (DRLs) on the front fenders, as well as LED front headlights and rear tail lamps, are available. The taillight housing has a blind spot monitoring device integrated right in.
Buy JK or wait for JL? This is a question most Jeep drivers ask themselves at least once. Well, to answer your questions, we are here to give you a jeep JK vs JL side-by-side review. Jeep JK has ruled the market for over a decade from 2007 to 2018 and this was the most successful Jeep Vehicle in terms of the number of sales. With the introduction of the four-door Unlimited Jeep Wrangler JK, Jeep sales skyrocketed.
By the mid of 2017, the third quarter of the newly listed Jeeps were four-door models. However, the Jeep JK still had some drawbacks. Some customers were still not fully satisfied with the JK in spite of the major upgrades it had. The leg space was still a problem for taller adults and the sturdy transmission was a major drawback. The manufacturers listened to the customer reviews and came up with a solution to all the problems that the Jeep Wrangler JK had with the introduction of the Jeep Wrangler JL.
There is another question that many new Jeep buyers ask about. This is that Jeep JL is it bigger than other Jeep vehicles? Well, the answer is that the Jeep Wrangler JL is significantly bigger as compared to all of the previous Jeep Models. It offers more leg space and more space for cargo. This is a major win for drivers who are quite tall or need a lot of space for cargo storage.
If we talk about the 2-door Jeep Wrangler JK and JLs, these are their dimensions. The Jeep Wrangler JK has a wheelbase of 95.4 inches, a length of 164.3 inches, a width of 73.7 inches, and a height of 70.9 inches. On the other hand, the JL has a wheelbase of 96.8 inches, a length of 166.8 inches, a width of 73.9 inches, and a height of 73.8 inches.
Now if we talk about the 4-door Unlimited Jeep Wrangler JK and JLs, the following are their dimensions. The Jeep Wrangler JK has a wheelbase of 116 inches, a length of 184.9 inches, a width of 73.9 inches, and a height of 70.9 inches. On the other hand, the Jeep JL has a wheelbase of 118.4 inches, a length of 188.4 inches, a width of 73.9 inches, and a height of 73.8 inches.
Moreover, its on-road drive is considerably better compared to Jeep JK. Both the Jeep JK and Jeep JL engines are 3.6L Pentastar V6 engines. The Jeep Wrangler JL still may not be the best vehicle to drive on-road if you are considering luxury or comfort. However, it is certainly one of the most versatile vehicles to drive on and off-road. That’s why looking for a Jeep JL for sale is certainly a viable choice. You can take it anywhere without the fear of getting stuck in some remote area.
If you are new to the world of Jeeps, you can easily lose interest after getting bombarded with information about its various models. This is one of the major reasons why people grow out of it and never get a Jeep. Well, you do not have to be one of those people because we will give you a short review of the various Jeeps you could buy according to your preferences.
The JL generation, which debuted in 2018 and is still getting manufactured as of 2022, is the greatest Jeep Wrangler for highway driving. This is the Wrangler’s most advanced model, with the greatest suspension for both on- and off-road driving. You can easily find a tonne of Jeep JL for sale as they are still being manufactured and are some of the best Jeep vehicles.
Off-roading is possible in any Wrangler, but the Rubicon is the most capable. The Rubicon is the Wrangler to get for real off-roading, with front and rear Dana 44 axles, 33-inch all-terrain tires, rock rails, steel bumpers, a 4:1 gear ratio, and electronic locking differentials.
Most Jeep Wranglers come in two-door or four-door Unlimited configurations. Only four-door versions of the Sahara, Sahara Altitude, and Sport Altitude are available. Wranglers with two doors seat four passengers, while those with four doors seat five. For some, price is a deciding issue. The four-door variants are more expensive, but they can accommodate five people and have more than twice the cargo area as the two-door ones.
When the back seats are folded down, there are 32 cubic feet of cargo capacity, which more than doubles to 72 cubic feet. A four-door variant might be a better choice if you routinely transport cargo. If you only have yourself and one other person in your home and need to save cash, the two-door model is the way to go. Here is a video about the different trims of Jeep Wrangler JL to help you understand them better.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What is the best jeep to buy?
This choice heavily depends on how and where you are going to drive your Jeep. What is the best jeep to buy for you could not be the most optimal choice for someone else. For example, if you want a luxurious ride, you should opt for the Jeep Cherokee or find a Jeep JL for sale. On the other hand, if you want the maximum offroad experience, you should go for a Jeep Wrangler JK.
But if we were to talk about the most versatile Jeep vehicle, it is the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 4×4. It combines the best features of the Jeep Rubicon which is a top-notch off-roader introduced in 2003. The Wrangler Unlimited was more of a comfortable ride for passengers. So the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon combined both of their features to give the customers a versatile Jeep that can be driven for both comfort and off-roading.
Q2. What does JL stand for Jeep?
JL is the two-word name code that is used to denote the Jeep that was introduced in 2018. It is the fourth generation of the Jeep Wranglers and is still in production.
Q3. What do JK and JL stand for?
The JK in Jeep Wrangler JK is the two-word code for the third generation of Jeep Wranglers. These Jeep Wranglers were in production from 2007 to 2018. These Jeep Wranglers brought a revolution in the Jeep market with the introduction of the first-ever four-door Jeep Wrangler. The JL is the two-word code for the present generation of Jeep Wrangler.
This concludes our article on what does JL stand for Jeep. Now that you know everything you need to know about Jeep Wrangler JL and some of the other Jeeps as well, you have all the answers that you needed. We hope that the information we provided was helpful to you. If you still have any queries, we always have your back.
Hey! I’m Patrick Foster, an author of the world-famous Patrick R. Foster Historical Collection, a large, working archive dedicated to preservation of the history of American Motors. Writing about this industry is a huge passion of mine, so here’s a little piece of my mind.