When images of Jeep’s 2012 Arctic Wrangler edition surfaced a few weeks ago, there was only mention of outside US availability. Contrary to that thought; Arctics have already hit dealer lots, even though Jeep only officially ‘revealed’ the new special edition vehicles this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
Following 2011’s Sport based Mojave – The Winter themed Wrangler Arctic is based on the Sahara Model; it includes Rubicon’s tires, wheels, and suspension as well as Mopar tail lamp guards, and fuel filler door. The Arctic also comes with special badging, white accented interior bits, and seems to be the only 2012 JK available in the ‘Winter Chill’ color (seen above.) Similarly to last year’s Mojave, the color-match top and flares are standard; yet not as big of a deal, since all Sahara’s are available with those options.
Forever a fan of special edition Jeeps; I’m not as impressed with the Arctic as I was with the Mojave. The only features not available through the Mopar catalog (or already part of the Sahara package that it is based on) are the interior accents, exterior badging, and yeti foot print (which is almost impossible to see in person, photo below.) I found the Mojave’s seats to be much nicer, the interior less tacky, and an overall better value. The Wrangler Arctic Unlimited starts at $35,129 – the Mojave’s base price was $33,275.
The 2012 Liberty Arctic is based on the Sport model – It shares many of the Wrangler Arctic’s aesthetics, and has some features we’ve seen before on the Renegade and Jet models. Sadly, it seems that the Renegade is no longer an available model.
The Arctic Liberty adds the sweet blacked out headlight housings, front and rear tow hooks, gloss black wheels, all terrain tires, and Arctic badging to the exterior. The interior resembles the Wrangler Arctis’s (but without the white spray painted steering wheel and vent covers.) The Liberty version’s seats are similar to Wrangler – and are nice for a Sport model. Also notable is the standard Media Center 430 touch-screen with a nine-speaker Infiniti sound system. The best part about the Liberty Arctic (other than the fact that it is not available in 2 wheel drive) is the fact that it is less than $1,700 more than the regular Sport 4X4. Adding optional equipment like the tow package, skid plate group, popular equipment group (roof rails, and storage cover) to the Liberty Arctic will leave you with a sub $30,000 family wheeler; as the base price is just $26,670.
I do enjoy the new duo of cold weather Special Edition Jeeps – and can’t wait to see the Winter Chill in Person. Yet, of the pair; the Liberty gives you more for your dollar. I wish the Mojave had stayed around for 2012 – the addition of the 3.6L would have made that a sweet collector’s item.