Engine and steering issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners
The 2023 Wrangler, Jeep says, is “the original icon of adventure,” and “the greatest adventures are electrified.” But when owners experience problems that dealers don’t recognize or can’t diagnose or fix, they are rethinking their adventure options. Complaints include engine shutdowns to the infamous speed wobble caused by steering defects.
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Most Common Problems
Between November 17, 2022, and January 16, 2023, there have been 5 complaints to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) about the 2023 Jeep Wrangler. These relate to the gasoline and EV models and name a range of components and systems as being faulty, They are the electrical system, engine, powertrain, steering, structure, visibility, and lane departure.
The most serious issues are linked to the engine and steering. But other complaints are also worth mentioning.
2023 Jeep Wrangler Complaint Summary
|Complaint Category||Number of Complaints|
|Unknown Or Other|
|Vehicle Speed Control|
Problems with the Engine
Problems with the Wrangler engine shutting down are well-known and widespread. There is even a recall for 62,909 2021-2023 Wrangler 4xe vehicles that are equipped with 2-liter plug-in hybrid electric engines. Issued on November 23, 2022, this warns that a communication loss may cause the engine to shut down. Needless to say, this increases the risk of the Jeep crashing.
There are two engine complaints, both of which appear to relate directly to the recall. But in both cases, dealers were unable to find the problem.
Dealer Can’t Replicate Stoppage
An owner from Pennsylvania says that while driving at about 25 mph in December 2022, the 2023 Wrangler 4xe “came to an abrupt stop.” There was less than 1% reflected on the battery at the time. He placed the vehicle in Park, pressed the brakes, and restarted the Wrangler. The dealership was unable to replicate the problem.
There is no mention of the recall.
Diagnostics and Test Drive Reveal No Problems
An owner from Virginia describes how the engine of his 2023 Wrangler 4xe stalled. There were flashing warning lights and sudden deceleration. This is “a significant safety concern considering I was in a city with cars driving around me. Had they not slowed (down), may have struck my vehicle because it decelerated so quickly. I attempted to push on the gas to accelerate, and nothing happened. After pulling over, I turned the vehicle off and back on again, and the problem was no longer there.”
Since then, the Wrangler’s engine tends to over-rev when he accelerates more than 3,500 RPM to increase speed by 10-15 mph with a normal to light touch on the gas. There has also been “a jerkiness to acceleration and shifting of gears” since this occurred. Additionally, when he turns the Jeep on, the engine revs up to 2,000 RPM “without me touching the gas to accelerate.” And it idles around 2,000 RPM “until I drive or turn it off.”
Aware of the 2023 Jeep Wranglers 4xe recall, he states that it only applies to 2023 models manufactured before his.
The Jeep dealership ran diagnostics and took it for a test drive in December 2022, but couldn’t find anything wrong. “This is a safety concern, because if I am driving on the interstate or highway at appropriate speeds and my engine stops working like this again, I may be struck or cause an accident that could cause myself or others harm. The fact that 2021-2023 Jeep wrangler 4xes manufactured prior to mine are going to be recalled in January with this same issue is concerning.”
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Problems Steering and Lane Departure
Steering problems rank high on the subject line of NHTSA complaints, just as they do for previous models. And it’s all got to do with what is now known as the Wrangler’s “death wobble.”
A total of 432, which is nearly half of the complaints about the 2018 model relate to steering issues. At 360, more than half the complaints about the 2019 model are about steering defects. This pattern continues with 160 out of 256 for the 2020 model. The percentage drops to 68/222 for the 2021 model, and 15/51 for the 2022 model. But all the numbers remain high and will inevitably continue to increase as time passes.
An owner of a 2023 Wrangler from South Dakota describes the defect as causing the Jeep to sway from side to side. The dealer maintained that “the steering was operating as designed.” Adding to this, the dealer said “the electronic control module that communicated with the steering box and the steering wheel could override intended steering.” Nothing was done to fix the problem.
Transmission Leak Issues
A powertrain-related complaint involves fluid loss and leakage from the automatic transmission and/or the transfer case. The complaint is from an owner in Illinois, who says this has been happening since the Jeep was delivered from the factory. While the dealers are unable to diagnose or fix the problem, the owner is concerned about the possible implications. The complaint states that this issue “can cause transmission components to be improperly lubricated, causing excessive heat, wear, and in rare cases, fire.”
Problems with the Defroster and Possible Rust Issues
A complaint filed under Visibility/Wiper and Structure is from an owner in Pennsylvania who describes how systems failed. The defroster only “blows straight up about the width of the rearview mirror, causing my windshield to fog or ice, and I (am) not be able to see.” Additionally, the undercoating of the frame of the Jeep “is already coming off, making me very concerned about rust down the road.”
This fear is compounded by the fact that there is “a fair amount” of porosity in the welds of the frame. The owner is concerned that if the vehicle was ever in a collision, the frame may not “hold up.” The other concern is that the porous welds may harbor salty water causing the welds to rust. This, the complaint says, would cause the strength of the already weak, porous weld to be weakened further.
Lodged with the NHTSA on November 17, 2022, the complaint states that the “dealer will not look at it until the 14th of December.” They were also “unwilling to provide a safe loaner in the meantime.”
What to do if your 2023 Wrangler is a Lemon?
If you think your 2023 Jeep Wrangler is a lemon, do something about it. The law makes Wrangler pay the legal fees for lemon-related legal fees, so it’s not going to cost you anything to pursue a settlement through a lemon lawyer.
Lemberg Law has helped thousands of lemon vehicle owners get settlements from various manufacturers. So, if we can help you prove you have a lemon, you might get a replacement Wrangler or a cash refund. If you’d like us to assess your 2023 Jeep Wrangler problems free of charge, call our Helpline or fill out a contact form and we’ll get back to you.