Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A line up of six Jeep models from a Jeep dealership near you are parked in the open in front of mountains.

What to Know When Looking for your Jeep Dealer

So you’re looking for a Jeep. You’re a driver that appreciates having the freedom to choose your own path, even if there aren’t any signs, or roads for that matter. First things first, you have to find a Jeep dealer near you that you can trust. In your search for a dealer that will give you the best experience while finding your new Jeep, you will want to find a dealer that has a history that matches the lengthy and reputable service history of the brand itself.

The Jeep name has a long and proud history. You should expect nothing less from the dealership that you entrust with getting the keys to your next vehicle. Let’s start with a brief history lesson on just how far back the Jeep has its roots in American history and why it’s worthwhile to find a dealer that can live up to the brand’s legacy.

The History of Jeep

The origins of the Jeep brand go back to the 1940s. During World War II, the Jeep was developed by Willys-Overland Motors. The US Army needed an all terrain troop vehicle and was scrambling before they joined the conflict. After the war, Willys-Overland secured the trademark and began production on a consumer model of the military Jeep. In 1945, the first market Jeep was rolled out: the CJ-2A. Since then, the off-road SUV has gone from a niche, enthusiast vehicle to one of the most popular types of vehicles in America from the 70s to the 21st century.

Jeep hasn’t remained a niche name either. The manufacturer has become one of the most trusted and beloved companies by its fanbase for a reason. From off the road to city and highway SUVs, Jeep has earned their drivers’ trust year after year for reliability and listening to their consumers to deliver exactly what they want. The Jeep name has become synonymous with off road toughness and reliable SUV brand standards.

On your journey to find the right dealership to find your new Jeep, it is important to consider the models offered and what you are looking for. Jeep is known for its off road 4×4 SUVs, but models like the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee also function as reliable passenger vehicles. Additionally, Jeep has the new Gladiator, which is the newest to the family and is the brand’s first foray into the truck market. Consider your driving needs and interests within each kind of vehicle.

A semi circle of old jeeps shown in black and white.


Off Road 4×4

The base of the Jeep name is off road. From their origin as an army utility transport during World War II to 70s enthusiasts and all the way to modern Jeep drivers, taming the wilderness and driving beyond where roads end has become the staple of the manufacturer’s identity. The core of the brand has been the iconic Jeep Wrangler.

The Wrangler is the most iconic off road SUV in the world, and you would be hard-pressed to find someone who could convincingly argue otherwise. The Wrangler’s power and technology have consistently improved, but have stayed true to the core design and features that long time drivers have loved since the beginning. Features like the large, powerful tires, responsive front and rear differentials for tackling any conditions, and removable doors and roof for a drive that gets you closer to the wilderness than any other vehicle. Of course, the look of the one of a kind grille and hood has gone largely unchanged over the years.

The Wrangler’s newest feature is a V8 engine, which hasn’t been seen in one since the ’80s. The new Rubicon model is anticipated to exceed 400 lb-ft of torque and 400 horsepower, shaping it up to continue to dominate the off road 4×4 arena even with the revival of the Ford Bronco.

If you lead an active lifestyle, enjoy going off road, and don’t like limits on where you can drive, then the Jeep Wrangler is going to be the perfect fit for you as you head into your local Jeep dealer. Some people who are fans of the Jeep want to preserve that rugged capability but need something a little more practical and multi-purposed. Luckily this brand is not a one-trick pony, and Jeep has you covered with their crossover models.

A line of modified Jeeps driving down a hill during 4x4 day.

Crossover SUVs

If you want the grit of Jeep off road while keeping the manners of other cars, Jeep has a small fleet of crossover SUVs that mark a comfortable middle ground between dirt-warrior and a dad-van (a really cool dad-van). Unlike the Wrangler, these have more of the common trappings you might find on any other SUV. Their doors don’t come off, and the ground clearance isn’t as high as their more wild cousins, but the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee are still equipped with powerful torque and enough horsepower to give you a fun and confident drive.

Consumers looking to save a little bit of money compared to the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee can save some extra cash by going with the Compass or Renegade models. While smaller than the other crossovers, they still maintain capable off road and highway drive quality with rugged strength and versatility you come to expect from Jeep. There is a class of vehicle that Jeep is not particularly known for, and that is trucks. The all-new Jeep Gladiator is taking aim at known midsize pickup favorites such as the Ford Ranger and Chevy Colorado.

Are You Not Entertained?

The Gladiator looks and drives a lot like a Wrangler with an extra-long body and an added truck bed. Add in a diesel V6 engine, and it drives even less like a midsize pickup truck and more like a very feisty Wrangler with dreams of growing up to be a heavy duty. For Jeep fans who like the added utility of a truck but aren’t ready to give up on the look and tenacious capability of the Wrangler, this strikes a good middle ground.

That said, for a midsize pickup, it starts at an MSRP $33,545, and trims and add-ons can go north of $60,000. Add on the poor fuel economy, and it may not be the most ideal midsize fusion. Of course, Jeep hasn’t built such a loyal following without merit, and the Gladiator will be a big thumbs up for plenty of drivers who want to stay with Jeep and drive a pickup truck.

Dealer’s Choice

Shopping for a Jeep can be as fun as driving one. You have a ton of options on what kind of vehicle you will be driving as well as options once you have chosen a model to add levels of customization and trim to make your purchase into the larger Jeep community memorable and unique. Be sure when finding a Jeep dealer near you that they have a good service history and knowledgeable technicians to ensure that you get only the best and most experienced service possible.

No matter if you want the wilderness exploration capabilities of the Wrangler, the versatility and comfort of the crossovers, or the vigorous power of the Gladiator truck, Jeep has incredible options to give you the vehicle you have been dreaming of. After so many years of proven loyalty and service as a brand, be sure your dealership has earned their stripes with a proud history of delivering unquestionable quality to your area. That will prove they are Jeep tough and worthy of your business.