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

JerryD

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A thing I would do is change out the plugs and wires. It's not something a person thinks about, and the power boost I got when I did that for my 3.8 was quite noticeable. It's pretty easy on the 3.8. Mine is going strong at almost 210K

As has been stated, working on the 3.8 is its main advantage. The 3.6 is a pain in the a** to work on. You have to take the top of the engine off just to change the plugs.
This. That said, having had both, I'll keep my 3.6.

However, it's easier to have engine driven onboard air with the 3.8. Hmmm. ;)
 
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Dirty Dog

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When I was a kid nobody had Mopeds. But we used hockey cards to make a Clack Adee sound on our banana bikes. Foot Note, Some of those cards are probably worth a small fortune now. All Good
We used regular old playing cards. Baseball cards were way too important to damage.

I think the acceptability of the power output of the 3.8 is largely dependent on three things.

1 - What are you used to? I'm used to driving a stupid fast car. So it makes anything else seem more sluggish to me than to others.
2 - How seriously do you take speed limits? I grew up largely in Europe and thanks to traveling the Autobahn, I don't take highway speed limits very seriously at all.
3 - Where are you? There's a big difference between driving a 200HP 3.8 at sea level and over a pass. A sea level, assuming a minimal 15% drivetrain loss, you're putting about 170HP to the ground. Going over Monarch pass, that engine will only be making about 130 crank HP, and with the same 15% drivetrain loss you're only putting about 110HP to the ground.

In reality, it's probably even worse. Drivetrain loss is 15-25%, with automatics losing more. If we assume worst case, you're putting down 150HP at sea level, and a whopping 99HP over the pass.

Add in the steep incline (on Monarch, you climb something like 2600 feet in 8 miles, and it's not the steepest highway around here) and it means the JK is going to struggle. With the Olympic Training center in the area, it's entirely possible you will be passed by a bicycle...
 
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Dirty Dog

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This. That said, having had both, I'll keep my 3.6.

However, it's easier to have engine driven onboard air with the 3.8. Hmmm. ;)
Agreed. We've got one of each with almost identical builds (mine has 2" more lift, the M6, and a few power mods). She loves her '11, but she does agree it could use more power, especially at highway speeds.
 

Chris

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But I guess the ultimate question. Is the 3.6 more reliable
than the 3.8? On average will a 3.6 last longer than a 3.8
before a major rebuild is needed.
This is a question I asked myself more than once as considering
a 3.6 JKU but as I read the forums on here. Many many issues
one way or another with 2012+ JKU's. If not the motor, suspension
related problms or something in the electrical is messing up.

Hard to say, but I haven't heard of any major issues with the 3.6. Any of the issues I have heard of have been minor ones such as the oil cooler.
 

Dirty Dog

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Sure, a V8 is always more fun ;)
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Always the right answer!