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Old 07-28-2011, 08:50 PM
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Thumbs up The Ultimate Test Drive...

My family is having a large get-together in Georgia this weekend and the wife and I decided to make the 2000 mile round-trip drive starting today. Instead of taking her Infiniti FX and putting more miles on it, we decided to rent something. I'll be in the market for an Overland Hemi come springtime, and just my luck, National had a WK2 3.6 Laredo waiting for me! Of course its not the exact trim I'll eventually buy, but I got the chance to really see how it performs as a vehicle overall. I must say........I'M GETTIN' ONE OF THESE!!!!!
Super smooth and quiet on the expressway and even the basic seats are all-day comfortable. Love the EVIC and its functions. The wife managed 25mpg running 75-80 and I got about 23mpg running 80-85. I'm impressed! Plus, 550 miles range per tank is crazy for a vehicle this heavy. However, there are some gripes. The 3.6 is adequate for most driving, but it seems to lack any reserve power in the 70-80 mph range. It seems kinda slow to get going from stops, too. However if i didnt need the Hemi for towing, i would probably be more than happy with the base engine and the new 6sp auto. That said, I'm not too impressed with the performance of the 5sp transmission. Kickdowns are pretty hard to come by without burying the gas pedal into the carpet. A quick toggle if the shifter into autostick mode helped, but I was expecting faster response for downshifts. I'm sure its programmed for economy, though. We also had an issue where the air conditioner stopped blowing air through the vents. It was as if the heater core froze up. I had to repeatedly run the heater to defrost the core in order to get air flowing again. After a quick rest stop where we shut down the engine, something must've thawed completely or reset because we had no further problems. Overall, this is the ideal vehicle for me. I can't wait to pick up my own...
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Old 07-28-2011, 10:50 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

My wife and I rented a V6 Laredo (does any place rent Overlands?) and drove it from Iowa to Yellowstone last month. I figured it would be the best option for determining if I wanted to purchase this as my next vehicle. We stacked all of our camping gear with our rear seats folded. Tons of room! We averaged about 23.7 mi on highway 89 octane (Iowa ethanol blend). Then our mileage got worse once we entered Wyoming most likely due to the cheap octane (85)(trying to save money) and the higher elevation. I wish I could have checked the if the jeep had the most recent TSB applied. Overall I enjoyed the Jeep through the Midwest, but would strongly consider a V8 west of Nebraska. The height on the vehicle was also great, I am coming from a 2001 Dodge Stratus R/T. Ride was astonishingly quiet like mouse fart quiet on the highway. On our last night we drove from Cody, WY to Albert Lea, MN in one sitting. The comfort was awesome and I can't remember getting sleep ass at any point on our trip. Great vehicle!

Picture 1 is South Entrance of Yellowstone and second is a quick pitstop near Grand Teton National Park.
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Old 07-28-2011, 10:56 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

LOL, the one I have now is identical to that one!
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Old 07-29-2011, 12:09 AM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrianb72 View Post
My family is having a large get-together in Georgia this weekend and the wife and I decided to make the 2000 mile round-trip drive starting today. Instead of taking her Infiniti FX and putting more miles on it, we decided to rent something. I'll be in the market for an Overland Hemi come springtime, and just my luck, National had a WK2 3.6 Laredo waiting for me! Of course its not the exact trim I'll eventually buy, but I got the chance to really see how it performs as a vehicle overall. I must say........I'M GETTIN' ONE OF THESE!!!!!
Super smooth and quiet on the expressway and even the basic seats are all-day comfortable. Love the EVIC and its functions. The wife managed 25mpg running 75-80 and I got about 23mpg running 80-85. I'm impressed! Plus, 550 miles range per tank is crazy for a vehicle this heavy. However, there are some gripes. The 3.6 is adequate for most driving, but it seems to lack any reserve power in the 70-80 mph range. It seems kinda slow to get going from stops, too. However if i didnt need the Hemi for towing, i would probably be more than happy with the base engine and the new 6sp auto. That said, I'm not too impressed with the performance of the 5sp transmission. Kickdowns are pretty hard to come by without burying the gas pedal into the carpet. A quick toggle if the shifter into autostick mode helped, but I was expecting faster response for downshifts. I'm sure its programmed for economy, though. We also had an issue where the air conditioner stopped blowing air through the vents. It was as if the heater core froze up. I had to repeatedly run the heater to defrost the core in order to get air flowing again. After a quick rest stop where we shut down the engine, something must've thawed completely or reset because we had no further problems. Overall, this is the ideal vehicle for me. I can't wait to pick up my own...
Glad you loved the WK2 as so many of us do and there are many of us anxious to get ours as well! BTW--the new 6spd auto is ONLY for the V8 HEMI. And the 500+ miles per tank will only work for a V6 4X2. Just wanted to make sure you knew.
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Old 07-30-2011, 06:06 AM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

Quote:
Originally Posted by HEMInator View Post
And the 500+ miles per tank will only work for a V6 4X2. Just wanted to make sure you knew.
Not sure about the 4x2, I have the V6 4x4 Overland and just took my first long distance trip, 200 miles one way and when I got there the EVIC was showing 360 mile to empty and on my trip back the EVIC was showing 375 to empty, of course I filled up going and coming, this was at 70mph and averaging 24.5 mpg.So I think I could have easily gotten over 500 miles on a tank with the 4x4.
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Old 07-30-2011, 10:04 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

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Originally Posted by HEMInator View Post
Glad you loved the WK2 as so many of us do and there are many of us anxious to get ours as well! BTW--the new 6spd auto is ONLY for the V8 HEMI. And the 500+ miles per tank will only work for a V6 4X2. Just wanted to make sure you knew.
Thanks a lot! I thought the 550 miles per tank was strictly for the V6, regardless of the drivetrain? Either way, I'm still impressed. Anyone a little worried about the reliability of the new 6sp xmission? From what I understand, this is the current xmission with another gear thrown on. If that's the case, should be pretty reliable, eh? What are your thoughts?
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Old 07-30-2011, 10:13 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

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Originally Posted by Adrianb72 View Post
Thanks a lot! I thought the 550 miles per tank was strictly for the V6, regardless of the drivetrain? Either way, I'm still impressed. Anyone a little worried about the reliability of the new 6sp xmission? From what I understand, this is the current xmission with another gear thrown on. If that's the case, should be pretty reliable, eh? What are your thoughts?
Yeah sorry you can still get over 500 miles per tank regardless of drive train but it's specific to the V-6 and obviously you'll do slightly better with a 4X2 vs. a 4X4. As for the new transmission, it appears it's a modified version (to what degree I'm not really sure) of the previous 5-spd transmission. The current 5spd in the 2011 has an alternate 2nd gear depending on whether you're up shifting or downshifting whereas the new 6spd transmission in the 2012 HEMI will have 6 sequential gears. The stickers are showing a slight increase in 4X4 mileage from 13/19 currently up to 13/20 for the 2012 6spd HEMI. I don't know all the gear ratios but I suspect reliability won't be a concern with the "new" 6spd.
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:12 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

Just to add, the new 6sp. trans. will not be in the 2012 V6 models. They will still have the 5sp. trans which does not have the second shift down gear. It is kinda confusing because the 2011 V6 and V8 have different part numbers for the trans. even though they are both 5sp. units.
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:41 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

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Originally Posted by berk483 View Post
Just to add, the new 6sp. trans. will not be in the 2012 V6 models. They will still have the 5sp. trans which does not have the second shift down gear. It is kinda confusing because the 2011 V6 and V8 have different part numbers for the trans. even though they are both 5sp. units.
Right and this leads me to believe that the 2013 will be the 8spd for the V6 only and we probably won't see the 8spd in the HEMI until 2014. It just doesn't seem to make sense to put the 6spd in the HEMI for only the 2012 model year and then offer up the 8spd in the 2013. I'm not sure if the refresh is 2013 or 2014 for the JGC but I'm betting the 2014 the way things seem to be shaping up...but anything can change.
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Old 07-31-2011, 02:36 AM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

The v6 W5A580 trans and Hemi trans 545RFE are two entirely different transmissions.
W5A580 German made, 545RFE American made
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:13 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeepleap View Post
(does any place rent Overlands?)
Enterprise does. They had two on the lot here in town.
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:15 PM
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Re: The Ultimate Test Drive...

Awesome! That should be a front trip!
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