2018 Jeep Wrangler Top 3 Complaints and Problems – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Build quality, steering and electrical issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners
HELPLINE

The Jeep Wrangler has always been famous for off-road prowess – but never reliability. All new for 2018, the latest model carries on a tradition of sub-par jeep engineering with plenty of defects. According to the Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the most common problems are steering, structural and electrical defects.

Have questions? Call us now at 844-685-9200 for a Free Case Evaluation.

Our services are absolutely FREE to you.

The harassing company pays our fees.

Steering

Being able to steer is, you know, kind of important. Jeep may have overlooked this fundamental aspect of vehicle design when they introduced the 2018 Wrangler JL, which is already overcome with handling problems.

Visit any forum or website, and you’ll see complaints of the JL exhibiting wandering steering, most notably on the freeway.

An owner from Albuquerque, NM, wrote into the NHTSA, “Loose steering and drift while driving. Unable to maintain a straight line without constant steering correction. Very noticeable at freeway speeds as the vehicle will want to drift left or right immediately after correcting steering.”

And the complaint continues on, “As soon as purchased it (the vehicle) and got on the freeway, it felt like driving on ice. Flat out dangerous to drive, right from the factory.”

The cause for these steering woes? A poorly welded intermediate shaft. If you’ve never heard of this component, it connects the steering wheel to the steering gearbox. Should it fail completely, all steering is lost.

That’s why Jeep has issued a recall (NHTSA Campaign Number 18V343000) on approximately 540 Wrangler vehicles for this concern. Dealers have been instructed to replace the shaft as needed.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Jeep Wrangler Steering Problems

THE STEERING HAS A VERY LARGE DEAD SPOT WHERE STEERING INPUT RESULTS WITH ZERO RESISTANCE OR STEERING CHANGE. I CAN MOVE THE STEERING WHEEL AT LEAST 2 INCHES WITH ZERO REACTION FROM THE JEEP, BOTH AT SPEEDS AND NOT MOVING. AT HIGHWAY SPEEDS IT IS DOWNRIGHT SCARY AS IT DRIVES LIKE AN OLD 70’S JEEP/TRUCK. EVERY TINY CORRECTION REQUIRES SUBSTANTIAL SEESAWING OF THE STEERING WHEEL TO CORRECT. THIS ISSUE HAS BEEN WELL DOCUMENTED ON JLWRANGLERFORUMS.COM WITH NO REAL FIX FROM JEEP. THIS IS EXTREMELY DANGEROUS…JUST IMAGINE TAKING A CURVE AT 60 MPH ON A TWO LANE ROAD WITH A LARGE TRUCK/SEMI GOING THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION, THIS IS EXTREMELY DIFFICULT TO KEEP THE JEEP IN THE LANE. SIDE WINDS AND PAVEMENT IRREGULARITIES ALSO WREAK HAVOC.

THE STEERING ON A BRAND NEW JEEP WRANGLER JL RUBICON IS VERY LOOSE WITH A DEAD SPOT AT THE TOP. IT IS EXTREMELY CHALLENGING TO MAINTAIN A LANE WHEN DRIVING, ESPECIALLY AT HIGHWAY SPEED. UNDER HARD BRAKING THE VEHICLE WILL PULL ONE WAY OR THE OTHER BECAUSE IT FEELS LIKE NOTHING IS KEEPING THE FRONT WHEELS STRAIGHT, CORRECTING IT IS SCARY AS THE VEHICLE SWAYS SIGNIFICANTLY.

THE STEERING HAS ABOUT 2 INCHES OF PLAY SIDE TO SIDE AND ON THE HIGHWAY AT 70 MPH IT CAN CHANGE LANES ON ME AND TAKES CONSTANT CONTROL ALL OF THE TIME. TOOK IT TO THE DEALER AND THEY SAID YES IT HAS PLAY BUT THAT IS NORMAL. THAT CAN’T BE CORRECT AS OTHER VEHICLES HAVE NO PLAY AT ALL. SOMEONE IS GOING TO GET HURT SOMEDAY IF YOU DON’T TELL THEM TO FIX THIS

Structure

Apparently, the welding robots at the Jeep factory are on the fritz. Because, not only does the JK have problems with welds applied to its steering, but also those on its frame.

Unsurprisingly, jeep owners are up in arms over the lousy production work. After all, if the structure isn’t sound, what good is the rest?

One owner from Waterloo, IL, wrote into the NHTSA, “I looked under my brand new Wrangler JK after hearing people complain about bad welds. Sure enough, my welds are awful. A Jeep service technician told me there is no way this should have been able to leave the factory. As of right now, Jeep has not done anything for me. Feel very unsafe in this vehicle. I hope Jeep has a recall soon”

Most owners complain of poor welds near the track bar, a vital suspension component. Jeep has released a recall (18V231000) for the Wrangler’s frame, but it appears to be for a separate issue. In it, the automaker describes a concern with left rear frame section corrosion, which could cause the rear seats to detach in a crash. And that’s definitely not good.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Jeep Wrangler Build Quality Issues

I LOOKED UNDER MY BRAND NEW WRANGLER JL AFTER HEARING PEOPLE COMPLAIN ABOUT BAD WELDS. SURE ENOUGH, MY WELDS ARE AWFUL. A JEEP SERVICE TECHNICIAN TOLD ME THERE IS NO WAY THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN ABLE TO LEAVE THE FACTORY. AS OF RIGHT NOW, JEEP HAS NOT DONE ANYTHING FOR ME. FEEL VERY UNSAFE IN THIS VEHICLE. I HOPE JEEP HAS A RECALL SOON. I?M NOT THE ONLY ONE WITH THIS ISSUE.

MANY WELDS ON THE FRAME TO INCLUDE THE TRACK BAR ARE EXTREMELY POROUS. IF/WHEN THE TRACK BAR WELD GIVES THE VEHICLE WILL RESULT IN A TOTAL LOSS OF STEERING. MAKING IT A HIGH RISK FOR ACCIDENT AND INJURY.

JEEP WRANGLER JL HAS POOR WELDS ON THE FRAME AROUND MAJOR COMPONENTS THAT WILL APPEAR TO FAIL. 2 WELDS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN POORLY REPAIRED DURING MANUFACTURE AND ARE RUSTING AT MAJOR CONNECTION POINTS TO SUSPENSION COMPONENTS. THIS WILL LEAD TO CATASTROPHIC FAILURE WHILE DRIVING UNDER NORMAL DRIVING CONDITIONS. RECOMMEND INVESTIGATION BY NHTSA AND RECALL. I AM CURRENTLY PURSUING LEMON LAW IN NORTH CAROLINA.

Electrical system

Today’s vehicles– including “no frills” Jeeps – are riddled with electronics. And that isn’t a problem when the technology is working right. But when it’s not, consumers quickly become unhappy.

Take, for example, this owner from Winsor, CO, who wrote in, “2018 Jeep Wrangler JLU Sport. The recent 5-inch radio update has become uncomfortably hot to the touch. After the update, the radio refuses to shut off.”

The radio, although frustrating, is not a safety concern. But the Wrangler suffers from other electrical problems that are indeed dangerous, as pointed out by a customer in Pewaukee, WI:

“ Cruise control on at approximately 55 MPH – had to brake due to traffic – but cruise control remained on. Only heavy braking eventually stopped the vehicle. Cruise control was fighting the brakes. The brakes won that battle. Took it to the dealer who could not find anything wrong.”

Thankfully, Jeep has addressed the cruise control issue with a recall (18V332000). The automaker will reflash the vehicles main computer, the powertrain control module, to cure the bewildered SUVs.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Jeep Wrangler Electrical System Problems

VEHICLE STALLED IN HIGHWAY, STOP AND GO TRAFFIC FOR NO REASON AND WAS EXTREMELY HARD TO RESTART. A FEW DAYS LATER, THE RADIO AND BACKUP CAMERA WENT OUT AND CAME BACK AN HOUR OR SO LATER. THE RADIO, WHICH CONTROLS ALL ELECTRONICS AND BACKUP CAMERA, WENT OUT AGAIN. DEALER REPLACED SOME SORT OF INTERFACE FOR THE INFOTAINMENT SYSTEM (RADIO) ON 07/30/18. THEN VEHICLE STALLED AGAIN IN HIGHWAY, STOP AND GO TRAFFIC ON 08/03/2018 AND WAS DIFFICULT TO RESTART. THEN, ON 08/09/2018, A BATTERY CHARGE WARNING CAME ON AND THEY REPLACED THE ALTERNATOR. WHAT IS EVEN MORE TROUBLING, IS THESE VERY PROBLEMS ARE ALL OVER THE INTERNET. ALL WORK HAS BEEN COVERED UNDER WARRANTEE BUT I HAVE WASTED THE BETTER PART OF TWO FULL DAYS DRIVING TO/FROM THE DEALER OR WAITING IN THE WAITING ROOM. I HAVE FILED A COMPLAINT WITH FCA (JEEP). IT APPEARS AS THOUGH THE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM JEEP ENGINEERS HAVE DESIGNED FOR THESE WRANGLER RUBICON JLS IS FLAWED TO SAY THE LEAST.

2018 JEEP WRANGLER JLU SPORT. THE RECENT 5 INCH RADIO FIRMWARE UPDATE HAS CAUSED THE RADIOS TOUCHSCREEN TO BECOME UNCOMFORTABLY HOT TO THE TOUCH. AFTER THE UPDATE THE RADIO REFUSES TO SHUT OFF. IT WILL ALSO UNEXPECTEDLY SHUT OFF AND THE BACKUP CAMERA WILL STOP FUNCTIONING TEMPORARILY. THERE ARE ALSO MANY OTHER NON SAFETY ISSUES THAT JEEP SEEMS TO WANT TO IGNORE WITH THIS RADIO LIKE THE LACK OF RECEPTION BOTH TERRESTRIAL AND SATALLITE, THE LACK OF DISPLAYABLE CHARACTERS, THE FREEZING OF THE RADIO TO BLUE SCREEN, AND THE LAG IN THE TOUCH SCREEN AND VOLUME. JEEP REFUSES TO DO ANYTHING TO RESOLVE THE ISSUE AND HAS SAID THAT THERE WILL NOT BE ANOTHER UPDATE UNTIL OCTOBER. SEEMS TO ME THAT WHEN YOU BUY A VEHICLE YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE TO WAIT SIX MONTHS FOR A WORKING RADIO.

BACKUP CAMERA NOT DETECTED. STARTED AS INTERMITTENT PROBLEM, BUT IS NOW FULLY NON-FUNCTIONING. DISPLAY SAYS “UNABLE TO CONNECT TO BACKUP CAMERA”. SEEKING DEALER HELP.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work aid your lemon at no cost to you. The law makes Jeep pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of  ‘lemon’ owners like you.

Lemberg Law are Lemon Law experts and can help you get Lemon Justice – absolutely free! Fill out our form on this page for a no-obligation case evaluation, or call toll free 877-795-3666

14 COMMENTS
  • Bill W

    Bought a 2019 Wrangler Sport with manual transmission. Between 30 and 45 mph on a flat road, the vehicle jerks and bucks enough to sometimes clank the transmission and rear end. Dealer says there may be a software update” someday,” after first trying to blame it on my shift points. I have owned ten vehicles in my life, 8 of which were manuals. I know how to shift! This is the worst-running vehicle I have EVER owned. My decrepit, old, 221K mile TJ with a 2.5 liter ran down the road MUCH more smoothly than this over-engineered joke. Dealer has completely washed their hands of the matter.

  • Ed A

    I’m 66 yrs old and bought an 2018 JLU Rubicon loved it 52K with the bells and whistles
    till I drove it to west tx. the wind with the roadwalking was not good at all. Bought in in april
    traded it the day after thanksgiving for a tahoe. Never been so scared of a vehicle in my life
    2.5″ lift with 35″ tires after market stabilizer and still terrible to handle. Nothing changes it
    really loved it in town zipping around, easy to get into parking spots. But hated the way it handled
    over 50 mph.

  • Mark H

    I test drove a 2019 Sahara. Ridiculous to control on the highway, constantly adjusting to stay in the lane. Beyond that the overall build quality is junky. Why does the role bar to extend to the rear? What happened to the role bar, its pieces together welded steel now. Lots of gaps in body pieces. What a piece of junk this thing has turned into. Built like a Fiat.

  • Andy A

    I was traveling at 40 mph on a highway and the rear wheels decide to lock up without notice. The car slide to a stop and while sliding it almost swerved into another car. I’m completely shook by this, The car asked me to shift into park in the middle of the highway, i turn it off and on the try to drive it and the rear has a loud thumping and grinding noise, I drove it maybe another 100 ft before I called for help, we limped it home and am having it towed to the dealership tomorrow.

  • Ana

    We bought our 2018 Sahara in August of last year and this past weekend it started not turning on after we ran errands. Lights on dash come on, radio works everything looks good but it does not turnover at all. It will not start. So here we sit it is the second time in 4 days now that this has happened. It feels like a computer issue because the Jeep is new not even 3,000 miles on it m. WTH

  • Ed B

    My rear defroster cable became
    I welded. My JL is a few months old. I was told by the dealer this is happining and the whole rear window is on back order for a deliver set for three mo this from
    Now.
    Now my radio went totally blank. I can not turn it on. I thought a 40,000 dollar Jeep would be worth it. Now I am ready to get rid of it.

  • Michael S

    Just bought a $40k Jeep and feel extremely upset. The radio turns off with an alarming, loud Pop whenever you have it on with an iPhone. Beyond being incredibly annoying to anyone who just wants to listen to tunes…this is a huge safety issue. It is a big distraction for every member of the family. It also forgets everyone’s iphone so that is a secondary annoyance. No solution coming said the dealer…for a year. So ha ha…you are stuck with it. No apology…just tough luck. I do not recommend a Jeep to anyone. Wish I had said no to family members who wanted one. Ugh.

  • Ramandeep Cheema

    Bought a Jeep JL and having issues with loose steering wheel. Went to the dealer but they are not helping and said it’s normal.
    WTH is normal when i am feeling unsafe at the road. Do they want me to hit someone or hurt myself then it will be a issue?????
    I need some higher management in Jeep to help me in this……Or send me the contact info..

    I am in Winnipeg, Canada.

  • Bob H

    my 2018 jeep sahara automatic start hasn’t worked only have 300 miles.
    Already had in shop for second battery was bad when picked up from dealer
    service engine light is already on at 300 mile
    Good thing I leased vehicle

  • Kimberly Bilyeu

    I purchased a 2018 Jeep Wrangler brand new and I’m having issues with it shifting, transmission not engaging.

  • Wendy McGovran

    We bought a 2018 Jeep Sahara JKU in January with 3 miles on it, on 5 different occasions now we have driven to various locations and when turn the key off and then try to start it again it will not start. We have power to the radio and the dash but it just will not start. I bought a new jeep so that I would have a reliable car…..ya right.

  • Michelle Schrenker

    Bought a Jeep Wrangler 2018 JL. Death trap! Total garbage and Jeep is still selling these things! Do not purchase one of these. You are putting yourself and anyone else in the vehicle in danger. Just want our money back.

  • Jeff mason

    Second Wrangler drives like complete garbage. One day I swear one of these JLs will wreck due to the steering issue. Mine is a death trap at anything over 60 MPH. Even at low speeds there are times where it is all over the road.

  • Dan Poplawski

    I leased my Jeep Wrangler JL in July and I too am experiencing “loose steering”, an inch or 2 of travel that does not start to move the tires. Called dealer to make an appointment, she laughed and asked “first Wrangler?” Follow the appointment I was told nothing was wrong, it’s just how they drive. That may well be true but it doesn’t mean there isn’t a serious problem.

Leave a Reply or Comment

Write a comment below to share online. Or, instead you can to our legal team.
Email is required to block spam, but will not be published.

Briefly describe the problem Briefly describe the problem

What’s your name? What’s your name?

What’s your phone number? What’s your phone number?

Get Your No-Obligation
Case Evaluation

Send a secure message to our legal team.

What’s your name? What’s your name?
What’s your email address? What’s your email address?
What’s your phone number? What’s your phone number?
Briefly describe the problem Briefly describe the problem
Your information is kept 100% confidential. We do not spam or sell your information.