Car Culture

Can't Tell Jeep Wranglers Apart? Here's How To Spot Each Generation

These guys made it easy to identify Jeep Wrangler generations.

There are certain cars that barely change with each new generation. Some examples include the Mercedes G-Class, Porsche 911 and Jeep Wrangler. All of these models have been on sale for several decades with minimal changes in design. Some people think that the designers are just lazy, but we have seen that there can be some backlash if someone messes with an iconic design. The Jeep Wrangler hasn't changed much over the years, but Sam's 4x4 has created a helpful guide to tell them apart.
The brand-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler is known as the JL generation. FCA has given the newest Wrangler a ton of updates under the hood, like a new turbocharged four-cylinder and an available diesel engine. Since you can't spot an engine from the outside, the JL Wrangler can be distinguished by its bulky front bumper with integrated vertical lights in the front fenders. The JL Wrangler also has LED running lights that sit inside of the iconic round headlights.
The JK Wrangler was built from 2007 to 2018. With this generation, Jeep slanted back the iconic grill, the hood was shorter and the body was sloped more. This generation used the iconic circular headlights, but added turn signals below the main headlights and fog lights in the bumper. This was also the first Wrangler to be available as a four door. The older TJ Wrangler was built from 1997 to 2006. This generation can be distinguished by a large windshield, a more vertical grill (with a slight bend in the middle) and marker lights on the fenders.
The YJ Wrangler was built from 1987 to 1995 and was the first Jeep to be built after Chrysler bought the brand from AMC. This generation of Wrangler is the easiest to spot thanks to its square headlights. The YJ can be thought of as the Porsche 996 911 of the Jeep world. Finally, we get to the CJ7, which was built from 1976 to 1986. This car descended from the original and can be distinguished by its squared off door openings bottom mounted windshield wipers.

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