New to the Wrangler world and the forum with questions about the 3.8

Acxman

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Hi All, I’m new to the forum and to the Jeep Wrangler JK network. I just purchased a 2008 Sahara 3.8 L 6 speed Wrangler. As I write this I have only driven it home from the seller about 10 miles. Love it so far. After doing some research I find that the 3.8L is only 202 HP. Not much compared to the other engine options that the wranglers came with. For the short distance I drove it home I drove it easy until I get used to it. It didn’t seem to have much power. I think my daughter-in-Laws older little wrangler 4 banger would out run it ? It was a well maintained vehicle and runs smooth with no hesitation. Now to my question.

Should I have avoided the 3.8L engine?

Also, is there a way to increase the HP on the 3.8 L ?

I also, read where a throttle response device increases the pedal response to the throttle body ? Is this device advisable ?

I am excited to be a new wrangler owner and part of the forum.

Thanks
Tom
 

BLACKJKU

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Most of the low Power feel is due to the drive by wire, if you was to put a throttle enhancer on like a Pedal Commander it would make it feel like it has alot more get up and go.

Also there are a couple other Models of the pedal enhancer available.
 

SteveF

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Does your Jeep have stock tire or are the larger tires. That too can cause power loss if the PO went big with the tires and didn't upgrade the gearing in the axles. My rig had 35 inch tires with the stock 3:21 gears. Upgrading to 4:56 gears made a world of difference.
 

SteveF

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Welcome to the Jeep community. Always remember that Jeep stands for Just Empty Every Pocket. Owning a Jeep is like having an addiction. You know it's not going to get great mpg, it has the aerodynamics of an oversized brick and its going to cost you more in modifications. But yet we get one anyway 🙄.
 
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Acxman

Acxman

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LOL !!! Steve, your analogy “ the aerodynamics of an oversized brick” cracked me up.

soo, which pedal response devices are you guys using without break the bank ?
 
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SteveF

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Pedal commander is the most popular on this forum. However someone on here said that 9-drive was a fraction of the cost of Pedal Commander and offered many of the same features. Also that it has been on his ollllllo for a couple years now with no issues. Both can be purchased on Amazon.
 
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Anybodyhome

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I sprung for the Pedal Commander and it's made a huge difference.
So, while 202hp doesn't seem like much, keep in mind it has little to do with your JK being able to get out of its own way, taking 20 minutes to get up to speed on the interstate on-ramp or being able to accelerate from a standing start before the light changes. In reality, it has everything to do with torque- which is directly related to your gearing, and throttle response.

For whatever reason, throttle response sucks on Jeeps. I don't know why and I don't care why. If you're merging onto the interstate, eyeballs glued to the rearview mirror, beads of sweat pop out on your forehead, you quickly glance down at the speedo and you've hit 40mph, eyes back to the rearview hoping not to see a semi tractor-trailer barreling down on you as you're begging all 202 of those hamsters to run faster....

Start with a throttle signal booster, try it at a variety of settings and, if that doesn't work, then look at re-gearing. In the meantime, find out what your current rear end is, compare it to your tire size and make sure everything else is performing as it should.
 

SteveF

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I sprung for the Pedal Commander and it's made a huge difference.
So, while 202hp doesn't seem like much, keep in mind it has little to do with your JK being able to get out of its own way, taking 20 minutes to get up to speed on the interstate on-ramp or being able to accelerate from a standing start before the light changes. In reality, it has everything to do with torque- which is directly related to your gearing, and throttle response.

For whatever reason, throttle response sucks on Jeeps. I don't know why and I don't care why. If you're merging onto the interstate, eyeballs glued to the rearview mirror, beads of sweat pop out on your forehead, you quickly glance down at the speedo and you've hit 40mph, eyes back to the rearview hoping not to see a semi tractor-trailer barreling down on you as you're begging all 202 of those hamsters to run faster....

Start with a throttle signal booster, try it at a variety of settings and, if that doesn't work, then look at re-gearing. In the meantime, find out what your current rear end is, compare it to your tire size and make sure everything else is performing as it should.
202 hamsters 🐹? I knew that they were not horses but I was at the very least hoping I had 202 ponies. But hamsters? Damm that's disappointing 😞.
 

TROY66/68

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Keep mine close to the red line shifting, lots of torque. Can not remember the last time I put it into 4gr. Love the roar of my Magnaflow exhaust. The price of fuel, oil, clutches. Only live once. It is my JK.
 
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Cobriscus

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First, welcome to the JK, Jeep'n, and this Forum. Personally, I am on my 4th Jeep (CJ, YJ, TJUR, JK). Like SteveF said, it is an addiction. I finally convinced my sister to get a JK and now she is far outpacing me on mods and time in the woods. She simple cannot get enough!

The 3.8L was the go to engine for Chrysler minivan's, so they catch a lot of hell from the Jeep community. That and they replace the 4.0L that has been under the hood since 1991. The 4.0L is practically a saint in the jeep community. An aftermarket throttle device, like the Pedal Commander (which is what I run), makes a big difference. You can set it as snappy as you want it and it should shine like a diamond with your having a 6-speed.

Best of luck and let us know how we can help
 
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Acxman

Acxman

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Seriously considering the pedal commander. I picked the Jeep up on Friday morning. Drove it about 8 miles home. Stuck it in the garage, then grabbed the other car and headed to northern Micigan to our cottage. So I haven’t had a lot of time with it yet. From just that 8 mile trip, Im feeling like it needs the pedal commander
 

Trail7

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Seriously considering the pedal commander. I picked the Jeep up on Friday morning. Drove it about 8 miles home. Stuck it in the garage, then grabbed the other car and headed to northern Micigan to our cottage. So I haven’t had a lot of time with it yet. From just that 8 mile trip, Im feeling like it needs the pedal commander

Not a horrible idea at all! ;)

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only4ajeep

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Price is nice, but it looked too similar to the Wind Booster from China for me to risk it on my wrangler. I didn't want to spend an arm and a leg but also don't want to risk damage or other issues. I have had bad experiences in the past, it could just be me being 'better safe than sorry'. I went with the Maxx Boost controller from sawyertuning https://www.sawyertuning.com/produc...axx-boost-throttle-sprint-controller-booster/
It is made 100% in the USA, has ONE button to change modes. You plug it in, press the button, that's it. No frills and $100 - perfect for my needs. The modes are stock, enhanced and turbo i believe.
 
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