What is Selec-Speed Control in a Jeep?

Thom Blackett | Mar 24, 2021

Jeeps are synonymous with carefree, go-anywhere, four-wheeled adventure, with or without the top down. To many owners, these are fun weekend toys that, as luck would have it, can also be driven to work Monday through Friday. 

But the Jeep brand takes playtime seriously, as evidenced by its focus on developments that permit off-roaders to venture farther, safer. One example is Selec-Speed Control, a type of cruise control designed for travel far off of the beaten path.

What is Selec-Speed Control? - Find the best Jeep deals!

2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Front View on Rocks

Jeep’s Selec-Speed Control is, in a way, a version of the cruise control system most vehicles have for use on highways. However, you won’t be using Selec-Speed while sipping a Dunkin Donuts coffee and listening to NPR during your daily commute, as this bit of technology is created exclusively for off-road conditions and very slow, single-digit speeds.

Selec-Speed Control uses hill-ascent and hill-descent control to regulate vehicle speed when climbing up or down a slope. Drivers set a specific pace for the Jeep to automatically maintain, which allows them to solely focus on steering over, around, and between obstacles in the path. Selec-Speed Control applies varying amounts of engine torque and brake pressure to maintain a steady speed as a Jeep makes its way along a trail.

Which Jeep Models have Selec-Speed Control? - Find the best Jeep deals!

Jeep has offered Selec-Speed Control for several years. As this article is published, it is available on the following models:

You’ll notice that Selec-Speed Control is not available on the Jeep CompassJeep Grand Cherokee L, or Jeep Renegade. Also, it requires an automatic transmission. Jeeps with manual transmissions do not have Selec-Speed Control.

How Does Selec-Speed Work? - Find the best Jeep deals!

2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Interior Dashboard

Similar to cruise control, Selec-Speed offers three settings. You can turn it off completely, turn it on but not activate it, or activate and use it. Simply tap a dedicated button on the dashboard or the center console, depending on the Jeep model, to engage or disengage the system. 

To put Selec-Speed into use, you must activate the four-wheel-drive (4WD) system and put it into low range (4L). If these are already active, you can start using the system on the fly as long as the Jeep is traveling five mph or less. You must keep the driver’s door closed while Selec-Speed is operational. And while you can engage Selec-Speed with your foot on the brake, once the system is active, it will no longer work if you apply pressure to the brake or the accelerator pedals.

To set a maximum speed, you tap the +/- button on the gear shift or, where applicable, the steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. With Selec-Speed active, this action does not change transmission gears. Instead, it adjusts vehicle speed.

According to Jeep, choosing first “gear” will set the speed to 0.6 mph. Choosing second sets the speed to 1.2 mph. Third pegs the rate at 1.8 mph. After that, the system adds 0.6 mph with each additional setting before topping out at five mph for eighth gear.

After choosing a preferred speed, the driver can shift out of park, release the brake pedal, and the Jeep will start moving at the pre-determined speed. At any time, the driver can override Selec-Speed by applying the brake or pushing on the accelerator pedal.

When Do I Use Selec-Speed Control? - Find the best Jeep deals!

2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Red Off Road in Mountains

For most drivers, capping speed at five mph isn’t something that will ever come in handy, but for Jeep enthusiasts, this system is ideal for gnarly off-road excursions. When tackling a steep grade or descent, or maybe a stretch of boulders, Selec-Speed handles brake and throttle modulation, allowing the driver to focus on steering and navigating over potentially unfamiliar obstacles.

Summary - Find the best Jeep deals!

Jeeps are well-known for their ability to traverse well beyond where the pavement ends. Selec-Speed Control takes that capability up a notch by providing off-roaders with a tool that lets them explore challenging new terrain with confident, measured control.

Jeep is the source of information for this article. It was accurate on March 24, 2021, but it may have changed since that date.

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