Following up on previous reports, an anonymous source within FCA has confirmed that the next-generation Jeep Wrangler will come to market with both a 3.0-liter, EcoDiesel V6 and ZF’s critically acclaimed eight-speed automatic transmission.
While this pairing makes a lot of sense, until now, we only had limited reports that either item would arrive in the next-generation Wrangler. This is the first time we’ve heard that the 8-speed automatic and the diesel would be paired together.
That said, we shouldn’t be surprised by this news. FCA currently sells the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500 with the diesel/eight-speed gearbox combo, making its inclusion in the next-gen Wrangler far from an Apollo 11-caliber feat of engineering.
Naturally, we reached out to Jeep for an official comment. Spokesperson Gabrielle Schulte gave us the expected response to this kind of inquiry, saying that FCA does not comment on future product.
Jeep has flirted with the idea of a diesel Wrangler for some time, with CEO Mike Manley telling Ward’s Auto just over two years ago that a Wrangler diesel was “on the radar,” although at that time, we weren’t certain whether it’d be the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel showing up in the rough-and-tumble off-roader. As for the eight-speed, SEC filings back in November revealed that it’d be coming to the Wrangler in 2018. Our source could not confirm which model year the 8AT/diesel would arrive in.