InteriorWhen redesigning the interior, Jeep designers again had to balance customer requirements and the Jeep heritage. The all-new cabin offers more comfort than before, better ergonomics and embraces new safety measures - including airbags for both driver and passenger - yet remains as functional as ever.
Designers adopted a modular approach for the interior to facilitate right- and left-hand drive production - the 1997 Wrangler was the first to be factory built with right-hand drive - as well as new integrated heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system. The centre of the dash is dominated by a new "stack" housing ventilation outlets, heater controls, radio, ashtray and minor switches. The all-new instrument panel uses traditional white on black analogue dials for clarity.
As well as housing a passenger airbag, the new dashboard includes a lockable glove box in place of the open box of previous models. More oddment space is provided by new floor consoles and map pockets in the doors.
New high back front seats offer greater side support and more comfort while the new suspension system has provided more interior space in the rear - by reprofiling the shape of the rear wheel housings, some 20 centimetres has been added to the width of the rear bench. In addition, the rear seats can be folded to increase load space.
Wrangler remains as practical as ever, retaining its hose out facility with water resistant electronic units and seat fabrics,removable carpets and floor pan plugs.Published 1 December 2002