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I'm thinking about buying a Jeep Wrangler for winter ruffly about 2-3,000$ because there is not a chance in this world i'm walking or taking the elise out in the winter. I love in NJ/NY area so it snows here decently...

My main concern to anyone who has this jeep or knows something about them, are they reliable and good in the snow? As you can tell i know nothing about them.
 

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As the owner of an 86 Jeep CJ7, I'd say that you'll be very happy with the performance of a jeep in slick conditions.

Lemme clarify that, though. 4wd shouldn't be used on the road, unless the road will allow a little tire slippage. Otherwise, you will destroy your transfer case in a hurry. So if the road is salted and clear, stay in 2wd. If there is a layer of snow or ice, or you're in gravel or dirt, feel free to stick it in 4wd and all is good. You probably know this, though, I'm not trying to be insulting. I had several friends who had no idea and were about to put my jeep in 4LO in my apartment complex, just to see what it felt like.

I don't know what kind of vehicles you are used to driving, but jeeps can be a maintenance nightmare if you aren't at least somewhat handy with a wrench. Especially older jeeps. The CJs are great for 4wd, and will get you wherever you want to go, however, they lack amenities, and they rust easily. They are COLD!!!! until the heater gets going, and then they're either still cold, or so hot that you have to roll the windows down to let the heat out. Mine is the latter. I drive with a thick jacket on in winter, but end up in a sweatbox with the windows down once the jeep is heated up.

IMHO, The 87-90 wranglers should be avoided like the plague. They have all the issues that CJs had, plus weak peugeot transmissions.

Later years of the wranglers (square headlights) are a bit better in the rust belt, as they went to two-ply steel bodies, but they still have weak drivetrains.

The 'new wranglers' or TJs, (with the round headlights again!) are good jeeps. They have few, if any, of the problems associated with the original CJs, yet they retain the same strong motor (get the six cylinder, not the four, if you have hills near you)
as well as having fuel injection. (all jeeps from 90 onward, I believe... should have fuel injection.) and they have a stronger drivetrain than the YJs. (square headlight jeeps)

I love my CJ, but it can be a real P.I.T.A. at times. I've towed buddies out of snowdrifts, pulled stumps for my parents, gone through mudholes as deep as my door sills, and forded some deep streams. And that was all when the jeep was still stock, and had 250,000 miles on the motor, with bald tires. (It has since been repaired) Any of the CJs are strong, but 83 is considered to be the best year by most jeep lovers. I like the simplicity of the earlier setups, however. If you're good with a carb, go for one of these, you can get a CJ dirt cheap. If you prefer fuel injection, go with a YJ, or preferably a TJ if you can afford it. The ride is softer, the amenities are better, and they are just as capable, if not more so, than the CJs.

For your price though, you may have a hard time finding a decent one. Most jeeps hold at about 5K no matter how old they are, if they are in decent shape. Anything worth less is going to show serious problems.

I LOVE jeeps, and have spent way too many hours thinking about them or working on them. I hope all this helps, and I'll answer any other questions as best I can.

Cade
 

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If I were you, I'd look at an older Subaru (90+ Legacy?). They're reliable (get the manual tranny to be safe), and have excellent all wheel drive traction.
 
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