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Old 05-29-2011, 12:42 PM   #1
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Hunting For New Jeep. Advice Please!

New to the forum but belong to many others, including Chevy Diesel, KTM Adventure & RV Forums. From the looks of this site, there's a great community of Jeepers here.

My wife and I are getting ready to do a cross-country tour in our motorhome and we're looking for a Jeep to tow behind, transport us when we stop and then off to find some cool four wheeling. We've just gotten out of the desert scene in So Cal with sandrails, quads, etc. Sold everything, got a KTM 990 Adventure bike and now looking for a Jeep.

Found what seems like a good deal but I'd really value some advice from the experts.

I found a 2005 Wrangler Unlimited, 2" lift, 33's, rag top, NAV/DVD (unncessary fluff), locking rear diff. Seems to be pretty stock other than that. Has 22,000 miles. Asking price is $18,800 from a dealer. Picture below.

I've talked with a few Jeep guys and they've said the in-line 6 (2006 and older) is better, more dependable and stronger then the V6 from 2007 on. I also don't want any of the electronic BS like power windows, cruise, etc. This will not be a mall Jeep! IMO, just more to go wrong. Also looking for a Jeep that will tow correctly.

So, what say the experts? Assume there's better years than others, models, etc. Really appreciate any advice I can get.

Thanks,
Steve
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Old 05-29-2011, 03:19 PM   #2
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If that Jeep checks out mechanically as good as it looks, I'd buy it and have fun

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Old 05-29-2011, 04:01 PM   #3
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i think you'll probably find that the 33s will rub the fenders when flexing. mine almost do and i have 4.25" of lift. that can be fixed though. at first i thought the price might be a little high even though it only has 22k on it, but then i saw you lived in california and stuff is usually more out there. it does appear clean and jeeps tow really well behind a camper. they seem to be a popular tow behind vehicle. i happen to agree with those jeep guys you talked to about the engine. others will disagree and no matter how many dyno charts and stats they show me i will still think the way i do now. if God needed a vehicle to get around in it would have a straight six in it.
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:30 PM   #4
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Looks like a good find, and CA vehicles rarely have rust problems. One thing to keep in mind though; larger/wider tires, are expensive, and get worn down on the highway whether the engine is on or not. Especially if you go with M/T tread/compound to help with the off-roading. If you really put alot of miles on the motor home, you may want to look into a drive-on trailer.
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C.L. View Post
Looks like a good find, and CA vehicles rarely have rust problems. One thing to keep in mind though; larger/wider tires, are expensive, and get worn down on the highway whether the engine is on or not. Especially if you go with M/T tread/compound to help with the off-roading. If you really put alot of miles on the motor home, you may want to look into a drive-on trailer.
yes all true. the pic shows all terrains which should last a good 50-60k
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:28 AM   #6
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looks to me like the 2'' of lift on the jeep is a body lift..
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:58 AM   #7
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Went to drive the Jeep today and it's as clean as it looked in the pics. Correct assumption on the lift, it's a 2" body. Tires are 33/12.50. Would rather have a 4" suspension and 35/10.50. Agree that with a 2" body lift that tires will likely rub. They didn't on the street but the plan is to find mud, dirt, sand or rock. It drove nice and true, braked well, had no rust and looked like it had never seen the dirt. It's got a fancy nav/DVD player that works ok.

The dealer is asking $18,800 and after a little jawing, said he would drop to $17,881. Don't like to jump on the first thing I so I'll look for a week or two and if he's still got it, offer him 17,000. Would ultimately like to find a Rubicon.

Anyway, really appreciate hearing your views and advice. I'll keep posting and will likely come back for more advice.

Thanks again!
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Old 05-30-2011, 04:18 AM   #8
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Yes, with a little looking around a LJ Rubi can be had at that price with low miles. 2in BL, no thanks.. Forget about flex being that close to the fenders right now.. Was it regeared? 33's and 3.73's are tollerable but not the most enjoyable.. Also 35x10.5 LOL.. Those don't exist in any tire I beleive, I know in 5 years of offroading I have never heard of that tire size.. 35x12.5 is what you will be looking at when going to a 35 along with definent regearing.. IMO Pass

http://www.autotrader.com/dealers/dd...P&cardist=5652 ???
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:32 PM   #9
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Wow, that was a brainfart! Thanks for the correction on the tire size. Guess what I meant was I prefer a taller, less squatty tire. Imagine I could toss the tires, do a proper lift and get the right tire size but think I'll keep hunting. Also, makes sense what you said about the gearing. On the freeway it felt like it was topping out around 60 so likely not re-geared.

The hunt continues. If anyone sees a Rubi in the 04-06 vintage at a decent price with under 50k miles, within 500 miles of So-Cal give me a shout if you can.

Thanks again
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Old 05-31-2011, 12:01 AM   #10
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Another question for the experts. I found another possible unit. It's an 05 Rubi with all the right stuff but, it's a 6-speed manual tranny. For towing, driving or off-road, any good, bad or indifference aside from personal preferrence?
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Old 05-31-2011, 12:21 AM   #11
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How well do the newer auto trans jeeps hold up to towing? A manual trans is no problem but I know with most auto trans vehicles, they don't like to be towed far on the drive wheels. The trans pump gets spun by the engine, and with the engine off, a transmission being spun over without pressurized lube on the output shaft is bad news. I'm not sure if the jeeps suffer from this issue, I know a lot of other vehicles do. My jeep's a stick shift so I never really thought about it.
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Old 05-31-2011, 12:26 AM   #12
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Makes sense. I know they can be towed by just putting the transfer case in neutral but you bring up a good point about the trans fluid.

Thanks!

More please?
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Old 05-31-2011, 02:16 AM   #13
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Just throwing it out there, it seems like now the demand is up, and the supply is low for used Jeeps, which makes prices stupid high. I just browsed craigslist and saw a couple of TJ's, one guy wanted $9500 for his TJ with 189k, another wanted $14,500 for his TJ with 88k, nothing special. All the others are just moderately over priced, I'd say if you have to buy it wait until like January or October.
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:55 AM   #14
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That price is on par with wranglers in NE Ohio. Actually, that would be a steal around here.
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Old 05-31-2011, 11:12 PM   #15
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So here's the one I bought today. Can I get some opinions from the experts? Paid under $22k

2005 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon
23,000 Miles
6 Speed Manual Transmission
ULTRA Off Road Performance Wheels
5 (NEW) - 35" X 12.50" BF Goodrich All Terrain T/A KO
4.5" RUBICON EXPRESS Lift
RUBICON EXPRESS Monotube Shocks
FAB Front Bumper with Grill Guard
SUPERIOR Rear Bumper with HI Lift Jack Mount, Swing out Tire Carrier & 2" Receiver Hitch Built In
CURRIE Adjustable ANTIROCK Off Road Sway Bar System
BUSHWACKER Fender Flares
RUBICON Rock Sliders
RUBICON Locking Front & Rear Axles
RUBICON 4:1 Transfer Case
Hi Lift Jack
Transfer Case Skid Plate
Gas Tank Skid Plate
Chrome Nerf Step Bars
DRAW-TITE Tow Bar (Used 2 times)
ICE COLD A/C
AUTOMATE Security System w/POWER DOOR LOCKS
Upgraded DUAL AM/FM/CD Player
Firestick CB Antennae
Premium Matching Neoprene Seat Covers (NEW)
Premium BIKINI Top (NEW)
Tilt Steering Wheel
Overhead Sound Bar
Rearview Mirror w/Outside Temperature & Compass Display
Floor Mats
Soft Top with Quick Flip Sun Top & Privacy Tint
Rear Seat

Thanks in advance Gents, or ladies!

Really stoked to finally have a JEEP!
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:27 PM   #16
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Sorry to lean on you guys so much but I have another question. With the 35's on this Jeep I just bought, given the suspension kit, Dana and heavier duty transfer case on the Rubicon, will I have wear issues on normal driving with respect to ball joints, stabilizers, steering arms, etc?

Anything else I should be aware of or watch for?

Thanks again!
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Old 06-02-2011, 12:46 AM   #17
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Looks like a nice jeep that hasn't seen any serious off roading. I don't think you'll have any trouble with the front end with that tire size.
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Old 06-02-2011, 01:49 AM   #18
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I don't know anything about price but that is a really nice looking jeep! Low miles and it looks like it was taken care of. I think you did good.....congrats!
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Old 06-02-2011, 02:17 AM   #19
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Great deal for all the add ons.
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Old 06-02-2011, 06:45 AM   #20
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Appreciate the feedback gents. Not knowing much about the add on's, I typically lean on people who know for advice so, thanks again. Hope to see you all in the dirt!

Steve

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