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Auto Show:  Ces 2018

2018 Jeep Wrangler: Consumer Electronics Show


author photo by Colin Ryan January 2018

What Is It?

The 2018 Jeep Wrangler has its roots in a vehicle used in the second World War. So it's not the most obvious choice of ride to bring to this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, where all manner of futuristic devices are introduced, like apps that can analyze saliva and then recommend a certain diet.

However, this compact SUV enters an all-new generation for the 2018 model year and comes packed with plenty of 21st-century gadgetry, the kind of stuff that's right up the CES alley. For example, the new Wrangler is compatible with smart watches. Using the Uconnect app (Uconnect is the name given to Jeep's infotainment systems, and the Wrangler offers an 8.4-inch touchscreen), owners can activate remote starts, unlock/lock the doors, sound the horn and flash the lights.

Drive 'n Save is a feature that monitors driving habits. That information can then be sent (with the driver's permission) to an insurance company with the possibility of gaining more advantageous auto insurance rates. Jeep points out that everything remains private, and there's no risk of rates being increased.

Jeep Skill brings Amazon's Alexa digital assistant and Echo devices into the frame. In this context, Alexa's abilities are known as skills, and they're enabled through voice commands. These skills include checking fuel level and tire pressures, remote engine starting, locking/unlocking the doors and sending navigation instructions to the Uconnect system.

Perhaps the most revolutionary aspect of the new Wrangler's appearance at CES 2018, though, is something called the Jeep Adventure Reality App. It uses augmented reality (AR), allowing potential buyers to configure their ideal Wrangler and see it superimposed in real life (on their driveway, for example) through an iPhone or iPad. Anyone who has played Pokemon Go will get the idea right away. The app can change colors, trim levels, and allow users to zoom in on details. No goggles required. It's currently available with iPhone 7, 8 and X, and the iPad Pro.

This idea of applying augmented reality to car sales is definitely going to catch on.

How Much?

The 2018 Jeep Wrangler itself starts at $28,200. To enjoy most of these connected services means a subscription to SiriusXM Guardian, which is priced from $17.99 a month.

When Can You Get It?

The Wrangler is on sale now. So is the smart watch app. Drive 'n Save is coming at some point this year, and the Alexa connection is scheduled for mid-2018.

Add It to Your Shopping List Because…

Regarding the Wrangler, it's one of the most capable off-road vehicles ever. As for the more techy stuff, that all depends on how much of an early adopter you would like to be.

Other Cars to Consider

2018 Toyota 4Runner -- There aren't any direct competitors to the Wrangler, but a well-equipped 4Runner is capable and reliable.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2018 Jeep Wrangler: Consumer Electronics Show - Autotrader