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Jeep Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid showcased globally

Tuhin Guha  | Updated: September 09, 2020, 12:27 PM IST

Soon after the Jeep Renegade 4xe and the Compass 4xe, Jeep has now brought electrification to the core of its brand with the Jeep Wrangler 4xe. This is the first-ever plug-in hybrid Wrangler and Jeep claims that the switch to this has created the most technologically advanced Wrangler yet, and made it even more capable than the regular 4x4.

The Wrangler 4xe is powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol motor and two electric motors. The first of these is mounted with the engine and replaces the alternator, similar to what is seen on mild-hybrid set-ups. The second electric motor is placed in front of the transmission case, replacing the conventional torque converter of the eight-speed ZF automatic transmission. A pair of clutches manage the power output from the e-motors and engine, also allowing electric-only driving. The combined power output for this is 381PS and 637 Nm, with an electric-only driving range of up to 40 km. The electric motors are fed by a 17 kWh battery pack placed under the redesigned rear seat.

This hybrid powertrain has three operating modes. In the default Hybrid mode, the 4xe uses torque from the 2.0-liter engine and electric motor. Aside from the all-electric mode already mentioned an e-Save mode is available too. This saves the battery charge for later use and brings the petrol-motor front and centre. Aside from regenerative braking, a max-regen function is available that harvest energy more aggressively when the driver lifts off.

This eco-friendly turn for the Wrangler hasn't come at a cost to its off-roading prowess. The electric powertrain continues to function when the low-ratio transfer case has been engaged, with the brake regen functions also intact. The hybrid Wrangler can be had in 4xe, Sahara 4xe and Rubicon 4xe versions and the off-roading equipment seen in the standard versions of these cars is available here too.

This means that the 4xe and Sahara 4xe models get full-time 4x4, Dana 44 axles front and rear, two-speed transfer case with a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio and an optional limited-slip rear differential. The top-spec Rubicon adds aa front axle electronic sway-bar disconnect, an even lower 4:1 low-range gear ratio and electric front- and rear-axle lockers. Also available with the 4xe is a speed control function built into the hill ascent and descent program.

The Rubicon 4xe seems to have kept its headlining numbers somewhat intact with an approach angle of 44 degrees, breakover angle of 22.5 degrees, departure angle of 35.6 degrees. The placement of the battery has dropped the break over and departure angle from the earlier 27.6 degrees and 37 degrees. The crawl ration has reduced from 84:1 to 77.2:1. Ground clearance has remained intact at 274mm as has water wading at 760mm.

Visually differentiating the 4xe are blue highlights on the front and rear Rubicon tow hooks. This also extends to the Rubicon lettering and badging. Also seen is the blue decal in the bonnet with 4xe inscriptions. On the inside, the Rubicon gets blue interior highlights. The Wrangler 4xe will go on sale in USA, Europe and China in early 2021. There is no word yet on an India-debut.

Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 63.94 Lakhs
Displacement
1995cc
Transmission
Automatic
Max Power(ps)
268
Max Torque(Nm)
400
Mileage
8.43 Kmpl
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