Help! Suspecting I Bought a Lemon

2018 Jeep Wrangler
Under 2k Miles
6-Speed Manual Transmission

The vehicle seems to be performing worse than the first two times I dropped it off at the dealer with a weird sound coming from engine. The noise seems to be getting worse (I can hear the noise now on 5th gear while before it could only be heard 2,3,4) and the vehicle seems to be more growly.

They said it was the shift lever and replaced it along with the shift knob. The shift lever is definitely a problem now. This morning (and yesterday) it slipped a gear and grinded --today on 4th and yesterday was while I was going into 2nd. It also has a lot of play on it. I can also now feel plenty of vibration through it and it’s rattle-y. Not sure why it was replaced.

I’m beginning to suspect the vehicle may be a lemon. My car is brand new with not even 2k of mileage on it and it’s already performing poorly and having major mechanical issues.

I’m taking it in today again! What should I do?

Look in your manual for the section on how to take your problems to the next level ( corporate ) and keep all of your paper work. Also you are allowed to use any dealer for service work.


Do a google search on Lemons Law in your state.
Find out what it takes to get a buy-back.
Document EVERYthing. Keep a notebook and all receipts.
Insist the dealer fix your problems.
Contact the zone office for Jeep.
Make it clear to them that this is unacceptable and you WILL be seeking correction under your state’s lemon laws if this is not fixed.

Good Luck.


Thanks! Will do. I am keeping records of everything and I’m already considering taking it to another dealer for service.

I’ve already done some research. I will give it another go at this dealer and if that doesn’t work then I will take to another dealer to see what happens there. Keeping records of everything and also, I’m emailing everything as a back up paper trail. Thanks!

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Just keep doing what you are doing. Keeping records of everything will make your case for you. I’ve been through this twice and came out better in the end because I kept good records.

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I did this 30 years ago. I had a Ford Taurus with a faulty AC compressor. They tried to fix it but just made it worse. In Maryland at the time, you needed to visit the dealer six times and notify Ford by mail of your intent to submit a lemon law claim. I did all that, and the last time the dopes replaced the AC compressor rather than trying to repair it. You should have seen the service tech when he looked at the computer. He must have seen a love note from Ford notifying them that this was their last shot. His eyes were as big as saucers. No problems after that.

Manual transmissions are so rare nowadays - problems in their linkage can cause poor shifting and rattles and thunks, and only the older techs have had experience with them.

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Your car came with a warranty… use it

This vehicle is not a car in the normal sense, it is basically an off road vehicle that can be driven on the road but isn’t good at it. It is very old technology except for the emission equipment and you may be finding out it is not for you. It has much more in common with a WWII Jeep than say with a RAV 4.

I’m guessing the cause is probably something simple, and will be easy to fix. Diagnosing it may be more problematic though. Advice above is spot on. I fyou want to do something yourself, find a 2 foot length of old garden hose and use it as a stethoscope to isolate where it is coming from. I had a VW Rabbit where the gear shift knob would come loose and rattle. All I had to do was screw it back on to the lever. My 4WD truck’s transfer case shifter makes a rattling noise. I know the cause but don’t want to go to the trouble to repair it. If you Jeep has a separate 4WD selector lever, make sure the shop considers that too. Finally ask them to check the exhaust system, especially the cat heat shields. That’s a common source of rattling that changes in volume depending on engine rpm, transmission selection, and vehicle speed.

In other words, don’t throw in the towel quite yet.

They didn’t have a 285 HP V-6 in WWII. The Wrangler would compare with the FJ Cruiser.

My old CJ5 has a similar appearance as a WWII jeep but shares very little mechanically.

Wranglers have had smooth riding coil spring suspensions since 1997, the old straight-six was discontinued in 2006, these Wranglers have nothing in common with the MJ or CJ Jeeps.

Your Idea of smooth riding and mine are different. This still has a short wheelbase, high center of gravity and a narrow track.

In short, still better off road than on and you can still get a 4 cylinder engine.

2006 was the last year a four cylinder engine was offered in a Wrangler. Next year a turbocharged 4 cylinder hybrid will be available.