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Old 09-25-2010, 01:29 AM   #1
Muddyspokes's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Northern California
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First new jeep!

Hello everyone,

Great forum..lots of good info for off roaders here.

Just wanted to kick this out there...
My wife and I are not riding our dirt bikes anymore and decided to buy a jeep for our off road needs.
We plan to keep it at our place in the Sierras and continue to explore the Mt Passes and Eastern /Western Nevada.

Looking at a used 2003 Wrangler sport- 5 psd 4.0L with hardtop owned by a lady with 59 k miles.(11,500)

I have a friend whispering in my ear to get a Wrangler like a Sahara or Rubicon.

I understand the Rubicon comes with several off road upgrades..

Should i hold out for a Rubicon? Or go for this lady driven low miliage-un modified unit..I'm probably going to do plenty of dirt roads and some trails..but not anything like rock crawling.
Dirt bikes required lots of protection-and I'm not afraid to do bolt ons..The Rubicon runs an extra 3k sometimes-which kills the deal...older one are a bit beat too..
Tx for ur help

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Old 09-25-2010, 01:43 AM   #2
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I held out for the rubi and Im glad I did. granted I havent done anything any stock wrangler couldve done, yet...

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Old 09-25-2010, 07:56 AM   #3
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The few extra grand for a Rubicon pays for lockers and a dana 44 I believe. Based on memory thats about the only difference between the Rubi and the other 4.0 you're looking at. I think it comes down to how crazy your "exploring" is going to get. I say if you're not doing any big time rock crawling/off roading I'd stick to getting the 4.0 non-Rubi. Maybe the Sport has a dana 44 in it too??...or did none of them come with a 44? Someone else will chime in soon
'98 TJ 2.5L
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Old 09-25-2010, 09:28 AM   #4

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I say wait for the Rubicon..... But I am also biased
Daily Driver 2010 Ford Fusion
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Old 09-25-2010, 09:39 AM   #5
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IMHO, Take the "low miles" and not "used hard" sport and upgrade it yourself with what you want. The extra 3 to 4 grand you save on not buying a rubi can buy you alot of off road capability ! Do it yourself and save even morer ! Just my .02
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Old 09-26-2010, 12:39 AM   #6
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Well thanks for the input everyone..If there was a Rubicon nearby-I'd be all over it..
did a few dealer test rides today-those guys can really sing a story.
Off to see the lady with the low miliage-sorta low 59k..but she is the original owner..and I like that.

I'll keep ya posted.

Can you tell where I can find ride posted in this forum...we live in the SF Bay area and often ride out in the Sierras or Wester Nevada.
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Old 09-26-2010, 01:55 AM   #7
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For sure get the low miles jeep. I think that rubi's are way over rated for the normal weekend wheeler. The only time i even use 4wd is when i get stuck. With that couple of grand you are saving you can get some much stuff for your jeep. Bumpers, winch, small lift, tires, skids and other little BS that will make you so happy. Good luck!!!
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Old 09-26-2010, 10:08 PM   #8
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Finally test drove th Wrangler sport...59k miles..clean in and out...except for the engine-seems ladies don't ever hose down or degrease the motor and tis is no exception.
Fortunately - plenty of timely service records...Jeep drove and shifted well.. Shocks seem in good are decent...brakes and clutch all feel about right...
One issue did show up- the "Check Engine Light"was on.
Seller claimed its from the gas cap not being tight-which is plausible...but car fax has one history of not passing I asked to have it smogged and the light checked..Can be anything right..? Until the code i read...could be the gas cap or something worse...
Tomorrow I'll see.

Thanks again for chiming in...been looking for a while- and no Rubicon is falling in my this may it...
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Old 09-26-2010, 11:05 PM   #9
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i have an 02 x, with the same engine light and all i can tell you about the engine light is a evap leak which could be anywhere, which sucks. but as far as the debate goes, ive taken my x in places that some people with rubicons might not go. and i think that says alot. but on the other hand, rubicons are pretty damn sweet
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Old 09-26-2010, 11:59 PM   #10
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The stock sport is very capable. I bought my Jeep for the same reason, keep it out at my desert cabin to explore with. Like said above, driver skill has more to do with where your Jeep will go rather than what's bolted to it. I would negotiate the price, sounds a little high even with the low miles. I think in CA the seller will have to pass smog to transfer title, which it won't do if the CEL is on. Good luck.
. . . . picking the lines with my twenty-nines . . . .

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Old 09-27-2010, 02:02 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by XtrmTJ
IMHO, Take the "low miles" and not "used hard" sport and upgrade it yourself with what you want. The extra 3 to 4 grand you save on not buying a rubi can buy you alot of off road capability ! Do it yourself and save even morer ! Just my .02
I agree. If you find a rubi for the same price chances are it's been pushed pretty hard already. Or high miles both of which could get you spending even more in the long run. Plus it's and offroad vehicle. That u don't plan on climbing with. I say get it and mold it to what you need. My 02 x does me just fine on trails and in mud. I don't need 44's because my jeep will prob never see heavy rocks. There's no mountains in lower al. Ha plus your gonna be spending loads of money on other upgrades anyways. When I bought mine I had 2500 left over, ordered me a quadratec mag and that money was gone in a week. ( I wouldn't order from them thou unless your sure it's the lowest price, always look around.) but regardless good luck!!

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