This week I’ve been behind the wheel of the most unusual Jeep Wrangler I’ve ever driven, the 2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392. So, what makes this Jeep so special and so unusual? It’s a hot rod.
Under the hood, you’ll find a 6.4-liter naturally-aspirated V8 and you guessed it, it’s got a Hemi. The beast-of-an-engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic that has shift paddles on the steering wheel. Together they put out 470-horses and an amazing 470-pound feet of torque. You’ll hit 60-miles per hour from a dead stop in just 4.5 seconds. The 392 designation is a throwback to 392-cubic inches, the designation for engine sizes before we switched to the metric system.
The 2021 Rubicon 392 has very nice bolstered leather seating with stitching and the Rubicon 392 logo embossed on the front seats. There is also stitching across the dash and throughout the door panels. From behind the multi-function steering wheel, there is a configurable driver info center in the middle of the colorful gauges.
Center dash is the 8.4” Uconnect system which operates the Alpine sound system, navigation, apps, climate, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and vehicle settings. The system works great and is very intuitive.
This screen also operates a terrific rear camera, Wi-Fi hotspot, and Travellink to get real-time info. One cool page is the off-road page which will tell you your pitch and roll degrees when you are off the pavement. You can also always know your altitude, which for some reason, I find fascinating.
Below the screen is your automatic temperature controlled air, hill descent control, the power window switches, and USB ports with a power outlet. Also there is the magical button to turn on or off one of the best exhaust systems I’ve ever heard. It is amazing. A red bar allows to lock and unlock the Tru-Lok front and rear axles. You can also disconnect the front sway bar if you really get into rough terrain.
The center console has the gear shifter with a Jeep silhouette on top, your 4-wheel drive stick shifter, a couple of cup holders, and a two-tier armrest with storage.
Moving to the back seat, it has very good head and legroom. Back seat occupants have air vents, USB ports, and a 110-volt outlet for charging your mobile devices.
It has the trailer towing package. My tester has the hardtop, but an optional $3995 Sky one-touch canvas power top slides back at the push of a button. When operated, the entire roof exposes the sky and it operates in about 20 seconds.
I love the built-in roll bar, it has speakers built into it. There is also a huge subwoofer in the rear section. Overall, the Alpine sound system is terrific.
What is fun about Jeeps is you can make them so different. Take the top off, take the doors off, fold the windshield back and enjoy all the fresh air you could want.
This Jeep is very loaded and comes with all the latest and greatest safety and off-road technology.
Total MSRP on this Wrangler is $78,740. Fuel economy is not good as expected but that shouldn’t be a factor. It will do 13 in town and 17 on the highway, or so they say.
The acceleration is insane. Stomp on it and the frontend raises, not unlike a boat while under heavy throttle. The big Jeep squats in the rear and it just flies. The exhaust system is just an added bonus.
For many years, I told listeners to my radio show that the Wrangler was not for everyone and for me, it wasn’t a good daily driver. Now it is a quite enjoyable vehicle on the highway, the visibility is great, it’s quieter than previous versions, and it has a lot of modern technology. Off-road capability was not sacrificed for a more enjoyable experience on hard surfaces.
One word of caution: This model sits up about 2” higher than the normal Rubicon for better ground clearance. This makes getting in and out of it more difficult. Especially without running boards. If you are six-feet tall or less, you’ll be really glad it has grab handles to help you in.
Jeeps have come a long way since inception during World War II, and this 2021 Rubicon 392 is by far the most enjoyable one I have ever driven.
2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392
- What I liked most: The pure raw power and the exhaust sound.
- What I would change: Deployable running board would be a huge plus.
- MSRP: Base price $73,500 as equipped $78,740.
- Fuel Economy: Rated at 13 in town, 17 highway,14 combined.
- Official Color: Sting-Gray Clearcoat.
- Odometer reading when tested: 4200 miles.
- Weight: 5,103 pounds. GVWR 6,100 pounds.
- Spare Tire: Full sized with matching tire AND wheel.
- Length-Width-Height: 188.4” long/73.8” wide/73.6” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 21.5 gallons with the filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: 3500 pounds.
- 2021 Wrangler 392 in a few words: An amazing Wrangler. Stellantis hit a homerun with this one!
- Final Assembly Location: Toledo, Ohio.
- Manufacturers website: www.JEEP.com
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper with roadside assistance, 5-year/60,000 mile power train warranty.
- Next up:2 021 GMC Yukon Duramax diesel.