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Old 12-03-2019, 10:40 PM
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Don't want a Rubicon, except for those sweet fenders

Bought my first JKU in 2008, my second in 2015. Both were highly optioned Sports (or "X" for the 08) that I added Rubi wheels/tires/rockrails/shocks. Why not go full Rubi? Never go full Rubi- although I spend a LOT of time outdoors hunting, hiking, etc. I never felt the need for the 4-1 or the lockers, and in fact I prefer limited slip as it makes sense for the sloppy conditions I'm more likely to encounter in Oregon compared to Moab slick rock.

I'm now ready for a JLU, and based on the options I want it's not necessarily cheaper to get a loaded Sport. I've always preferred the black fenders, but the select trac transfer case / limited slip has me considering a Sahara for the first time. That said- the Rubi high line fenders are pretty sweet, and 4.10 > 3.45. As cheap as I am, I can see adding textured black ones to a Sahara to go with the Rubi take off wheels/tires that I'll add within the first month.
I guess I have 2 questions:
1. Anyone add Mopar Rubi high line fenders to a Sahara/Sport? If so, what was the PITA factor?
2. How's the 3.45 gear ratio with Rubi take off wheels/tires? I'm leaning towards the 2.0 engine, if that matters.

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Old 12-03-2019, 10:45 PM   #2
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I agree the sport and Sahara fenders just look wrong

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Old 12-03-2019, 10:49 PM   #3
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I installed the rubi fenders on my Sport. Super simple install. Only special tool needed is a poly rivet gun. Which you can get on Amazon or at a harbor freight.

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Old 12-04-2019, 12:03 AM   #4
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I thought you could get them as a factory option in any trim (obviously standard on Rubis). Could be wrong though.
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Old 12-04-2019, 02:51 AM   #5
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Personally, I prefer the Sahara over the Rubicon fenders. The high fenders on Rubicon look weird to me.

Looks aside, you should be able to fit Rubicon wheels and tires on a Sahara without issue: Rubicon tires are 285/70-17, which works out to be 32.7 x 11.2 inches; I mounted 275/70-18 tires on my Sahara, which works to be 33.2 x 10.8 inches, without lift or rubbing —see below.

Good luck.

My Sahara with 33.2 x 10.8 KO2s, no lift and no rubbing
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Old 12-05-2019, 07:39 PM   #6
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I agree the sport and Sahara fenders just look wrong
The higher fenders are far more aggressive looking not to mention you can fit 35ís on without a lift as everyone knows. Rubicon takeoffs are the post popular mod on the other trim levels.
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Old 12-05-2019, 07:46 PM   #7
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The higher fenders are far more aggressive looking not to mention you can fit 35ís on without a lift as everyone knows. Rubicon takeoffs are the post popular mod on the other trim levels.
yup.
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Old 12-05-2019, 07:57 PM   #8
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I agree the sport and Sahara fenders just look wrong




Removing that piece makes a huge difference from the awful factory look.
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Old 12-05-2019, 08:41 PM   #9
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I actually prefer the Sport fenders to the Rubicon fenders. I replaced my front bumper also.
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Old 12-06-2019, 01:28 AM   #10
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Personally, I prefer the Sahara over the Rubicon fenders. The high fenders on Rubicon look weird to me.

Looks aside, you should be able to fit Rubicon wheels and tires on a Sahara without issue: Rubicon tires are 285/70-17, which works out to be 32.7 x 11.2 inches; I mounted 275/70-18 tires on my Sahara, which works to be 33.2 x 10.8 inches, without lift or rubbing —see below.

Good luck.

My Sahara with 33.2 x 10.8 KO2s, no lift and no rubbing
Jesus now you have a JL? Didn't you just get a Tacoma??
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Old 12-06-2019, 05:01 AM   #11
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Jesus now you have a JL? Didn't you just get a Tacoma??
Dude, that’s so 2019...! Yer behind the times...

Yes, I had a Tacoma TRD Off-Road for six months. Hated it: sh*tty driver seat, sh*tty automatic transmission, weak engine, mysterious driveline shudders; hated the retarded electronics, the bulky exterior, the high hood, the cramped interior, the absence of an enclosed cargo space. Couldn’t wait to get rid of it.

Fortunately, the build quality felt like carved out of a solid ingot, and the truck held its value like gold. It cost me the equivalent of the sales tax to drive it for six months; that part was simply amazing. And the Toyota dealer experience, while not stellar, was way better than that from your normal Jeep dealer.

Wrangler feels like a well-worn pair of gloves, warts and all.
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Old 12-06-2019, 08:02 AM   #12
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Dude, thatís so 2019...! Yer behind the times...

Wrangler feels like a well-worn pair of gloves, warts and all.
I envisioned something like this happening as my '05 Tundra 46K is my HD/Lowes truck and driving the Jeep is a totally different experience.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:00 AM   #13
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As said you can fit the standard Rubicon tires on a Sport or Sahara(285-70-17.) Personally I like the looks of the Sport/Sahara fenders more but think the Rubis look better with bigger tires(35+).
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:37 AM   #14
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As said you can fit the standard Rubicon tires on a Sport or Sahara(285-70-17.) Personally I like the looks of the Sport/Sahara fenders more but think the Rubis look better with bigger tires(35+).
Agreed: IMO the Sport/Sahara fenders better maintain that classic Jeep look and proportions.

If it is indeed true that Rubicon fenders are the “most popular takeoff item”, I suspect it has more to do with they being an affordable means to mount 35” tires without a lift, than for aesthetic reasons.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:43 AM   #15
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I envisioned something like this happening as my '05 Tundra 46K is my HD/Lowes truck and driving the Jeep is a totally different experience.
I sold that Tacoma with only 4,200 miles after owning it for six months. Or a mere 700 miles/month.

That’s how little I wanted to drive it.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:00 AM   #16
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Agreed: IMO the Sport/Sahara fenders better maintain that classic Jeep look and proportions.

If it is indeed true that Rubicon fenders are the ďmost popular takeoff itemĒ, I suspect it has more to do with they being an affordable means to mount 35Ē tires without a lift, than for aesthetic reasons.
for me it is 100% aesthetic. I don't like how soft (for lack of a better term) the sport/sahara fenders look sloping down the back of the wheel well tucked in tight. That area catches my eye every time I walk by a JL or JT sport. I have been looking hard at the JT Sport S with max tow (comes with the rubicon axles front and rear and 4.10) but flares just look right to me. One thing that is nice is we all have different tastes so what works for one certainly does not for another else it would be a pretty boring world.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:37 AM   #17
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I sold that Tacoma with only 4,200 miles after owning it for six months. Or a mere 700 miles/month.

Thatís how little I wanted to drive it.

I drove a Tacoma and 4 Runner a few weeks ago. I was less than impressed. I was surprised at how boring both of them were. Both also had a shimmy in the steering wheel on the highway. Made me want my Jeep even more. Iím still not sold on the JL and the JT doesnít work because I need space for my dog. The 8 speed and fenders are the only things I would want from the JL. The rest i donít need or donít care about. Plus I still love the Recon package.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:42 AM   #18
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for me it is 100% aesthetic. I don't like how soft (for lack of a better term) the sport/sahara fenders look sloping down the back of the wheel well tucked in tight. That area catches my eye every time I walk by a JL or JT sport. I have been looking hard at the JT Sport S with max tow (comes with the rubicon axles front and rear and 4.10) but flares just look right to me. One thing that is nice is we all have different tastes so what works for one certainly does not for another else it would be a pretty boring world.
The same way my eyes are drawn to the big black void between the Rubicon fenders and the top of the tire.

But like you say: different strokes for different folks is a good thing.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:00 AM   #19
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The same way my eyes are drawn to the big black void between the Rubicon fenders and the top of the tire.



But like you say: different strokes for different folks is a good thing.


Thatís where you put more tire


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Old 12-06-2019, 11:09 AM   #20
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I drove a Tacoma and 4 Runner a few weeks ago. I was less than impressed. I was surprised at how boring both of them were. Both also had a shimmy in the steering wheel on the highway. Made me want my Jeep even more. I’m still not sold on the JL and the JT doesn’t work because I need space for my dog. The 8 speed and fenders are the only things I would want from the JL. The rest i don’t need or don’t care about. Plus I still love the Recon package.
I agree with the 8-speed automatic: it is superb. In fact, it makes the 3.6 V6 feel liberated, compared to my JKs or my dad Dodge Journey with a 6-speed auto.

FWIW, I have learned to appreciate my JL in the four weeks I’ve owned it. The assembly quality is simply beyond anything JK offered, even in its best production years. My Recon came with a myriad of rattles, squeaks and misaligned panels that drove me nuts; this JL has none. Fit-and-finish, from the exterior paint to the interior materials is in another league altogether. The doors and tailgate open and close with a quality feel never experienced on a JK; where the JK fenders felt loose and flimsy, JL’s feel solid and well secured. The engine and transmission are much more refined and quieter. The wind noise, while still present, is much lower. And the comfort and convenience features, like the proximity door locks, the heated steering wheel and the backup camera with sensors are just awesome. JL cruises effortlessly at 80 MPH on the freeway, while averaging 20 MPG. And I like having Selec-Trac once again.

There are certain areas were JK is still better: the steering has more feel —an ongoing irritant for many JL owners; the front occupants enjoy greater interior space —JL front seats are higher off the floor, bringing your head closer to the roof and restricting visibility of traffic lights. JL’s myriad of electronics represent a real concern in the long-term —the new 2.0T only adds more concern in the long-term, IMHO.

Ultimately, the areas where JL brings added improvement are primarily in city and freeway driving. Hardly any of them make JL a better off-roader than JK. Add to that those hefty prices and it is hard to justify spending $55,000 to have that pretty paint and multitude of sensors get bashed on the trail.

It’s clearly not an easy choice.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:15 AM   #21
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Don't want a Rubicon, except for those sweet fenders

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I agree with the 8-speed automatic: it is superb. In fact, it makes the 3.6 V6 feel liberated, compared to my JKs or my dad Dodge Journey with a 6-speed auto.



FWIW, I have learned to appreciate my JL in the four weeks Iíve owned it. The assembly quality is simply beyond anything JK offered, even in its best production years. My Recon came with a myriad of rattles and squeaks that drove me nuts; this JL has none. Fit-and-finish, from the exterior paint to the interior materials is in another league altogether. The doors and tailgate open and close with a quality feel never experienced on a JK; where the JK fenders felt loose and flimsy, JLís feel solid and well secured. The engine and transmission are much more refined and quieter than on JK. The wind noise, while still present, is lower than on my JKs. And the comfort and convenience features, like the proximity door locks, the heated steering wheel and the backup camera with sensors are just awesome. And I like having Selec-Trac in a Jeep once again.



There are certain areas were JK is clearly better: the steering has more feel óan ongoing irritant to many JL owners; the front occupants enjoy greater interior space óJL front seats are higher off the floor, bringing your head closer to the roof and restricting visibility of traffic lights. And JLís myriad of electronics represent a concern in the long-term.



Ultimately, the areas where JL offers improvement are primarily for on-road, urban and daily-driving conditions. Hardly any of them make JL a better off-roader than JK. Add to that hefty prices that make it hard to justify spending $55,000 to have JLís pretty paint and multitude of sensors get bashed on the trail.

One day I might trade this Recon, but I really like the package. Red seat belts, red accents. So simple inside. So far itís the quietest, best built JK Iíve owned. I know i just jinxed myself. Now the bar is not very high, but Iím pretty happy with it. I can do everything in it I can imagine except get good gas mileage or a comfy ride. What I like about the JLR is I can put a small lift on it and run 37ís with stock fenders. If I want 37ís and I do then I need to go with a 4.5Ē lift to run 37ís with stock fenders.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:25 AM   #22
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I may be the Odd Man out on this but.... I find the ride in a Jeep to be very comfortable. Maybe it's the seats, height, etc but I really enjoy the comfort.

Supposedly luxury type vehicles not so much (for me).
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:26 AM   #23
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One day I might trade this Recon, but I really like the package. Red seat belts, red accents. So simple inside. So far itís the quietest, best built JK Iíve owned. I know i just jinxed myself. Now the bar is not very high, but Iím pretty happy with it. I can do everything in it I can imagine except get good gas mileage or a comfy ride. What I like about the JLR is I can put a small lift on it and run 37ís with stock fenders. If I want 37ís and I do then I need to go with a 4.5Ē lift to run 37ís with stock fenders.
I will say my Recon is the best built JK I have had (this is only my 4th since 2012) It literally does not have a rattle at 32000 miles.
I have not test drove a JL but have test drove the JT in each version and they were all very nice and the 8sp is light years nicer than the 5sp but I do know the 5spd is very tough reliable tranny not sure how the 8sp will pan out. I have had 4 dealers make me an offer on my recon towards a trade on a Gladiator and was offered a whopping $30000 at two dealers, 32000 at another and 35500 at another. made the decision to renew my plates pretty easy .
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:27 AM   #24
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I will say my Recon is the best built JK I have had (this is only my 4th since 2012) It literally does not have a rattle at 32000 miles.

I have not test drove a JL but have test drove the JT in each version and they were all very nice and the 8sp is light years nicer than the 5sp but I do know the 5spd is very tough reliable tranny not sure how the 8sp will pan out. I have had 4 dealers make me an offer on my recon towards a trade on a Gladiator and was offered a whopping $30000 at two dealers, 32000 at another and 35500 at another. made the decision to renew my plates pretty easy .

Iíve never renewed my plates on a Jeep. This might be the first one.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:28 AM   #25
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I may be the Odd Man out on this but.... I find the ride in a Jeep to be very comfortable. Maybe it's the seats, height, etc but I really enjoy the comfort.

Supposedly luxury type vehicles not so much (for me).
I agree we take the jeep vs my wife's CRV touring edition on any long trip just because it is so much more comfortable sitting up high.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:30 AM   #26
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Iíve never renewed my plates on a Jeep. This might be the first one.
we have to renew every year so I have done it a few times over the years . renewal here for a year is $426 so hate to renew if just going to trade again.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:35 AM   #27
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I may be the Odd Man out on this but.... I find the ride in a Jeep to be very comfortable. Maybe it's the seats, height, etc but I really enjoy the comfort.

Supposedly luxury type vehicles not so much (for me).
The best riding —and handling— Wrangler I owned was my 2015 JKU Sahara, with a Mopar 2” lift and 34x10.5 D-rated KO2 tires.

It also had the JKS FlexConnect sway-bar links. Perhaps that contributed to the overall ride experience. I wish JKS made them for JL...
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:23 PM   #28
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One day I might trade this Recon, but I really like the package. Red seat belts, red accents. So simple inside. So far it’s the quietest, best built JK I’ve owned. I know i just jinxed myself. Now the bar is not very high, but I’m pretty happy with it. I can do everything in it I can imagine except get good gas mileage or a comfy ride. What I like about the JLR is I can put a small lift on it and run 37’s with stock fenders. If I want 37’s and I do then I need to go with a 4.5” lift to run 37’s with stock fenders.
My Jeep needs changed when I relocated from California to Washington State: my weekend off-roading trips to Big Bear and Death Valley got replaced with daily drives in the rain, on snow-covered roads and exploring mountain forest roads. Around here JL’s comfort creatures are more readily appreciated than pure off-road capability; Sahara’s Selec-Trac and LSD are more immediately useful than Rubicon’s lockers.

Wranglers are now more specialized than ever. Where in the past Sahara often got overlooked, somewhat lost in the shuffle between Sport and Rubicon, Sahara is now a credible daily driver and family all-weather traveler; meanwhile Rubicon remains focused on off-road capability.

By giving each version a more defined role, FCA aims to broaden Wrangler’s market appeal. Judging by the number of newcomers inquiring about Saharas and Selec-Trac, and the number of noobs paying $50,000+ for Rubicons, I’d say the strategy seems to be working.

It also means one has to spend more time carefully choosing the right Wrangler.
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Old 12-06-2019, 01:02 PM   #29
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It is true everyone has their opinion and experience, what they like and dislike. For me, I am on my 5th Wrangler starting in 1995 with the square headlights and in line 6cyl manual to my current 2016 JKUR with 3.5" AEV DS, 35" Pats, and 4.10s and other goods. Every Jeep I have had after the 1995 rig has been a Rubicon including the first edition made in a khaki metallic 2 door, all of which were eventually lifted with larger tires etc. It is personal preference for me but I would not even consider buying a Wrangler that wasn't a Rube or Recon for myriad reason from capability off the lot to beefier bits to styling. Having said that, I use my Jeep for camping, trail riding, off roading and just pure enthusiast usage. In addition, it is the most solid, refined, comfortable, good driving/handling and well equipped Jeep I have ever owned by miles. When they went to the 3.6, power dome hood, 10A bumpers and interior re-design - for me they knocked it out of the park. If I want exceptional road manners, loads of power, every bell and whistle imaginable and highway entertainment - we drive our new Hemi GC which is precisely why we bought it - not a Wrangler. I have no trouble, however, admitting the 8 speed in the JL is sweet and so are the fender flares. The ability to run 35s with no lift or 37s with the Mopar 2" is just a beautiful thing. Stock Jeeps just don't look right to me, including mine when I got it. A Wrangler needs a lift and 35s or more to look right IMHO and the JL has made that infinitely easier to make happen.

FWIW, I said the same about the truck many times and in other threads. Totally uninspiring stock and especially the Sport (yes I have driven both Rube and Sport). Case in point, a Gladiator Sport drove by me yesterday and I honestly almost didn't notice except I am very observant and a car nut. Then I was walking through town and this bad boy caught my eye from down the street. I am not a big fan of the rhino lined top to bottom business, and although I think these flares are a bit cheese, this rig was nice. My $.02
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Old 12-06-2019, 01:20 PM   #30
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IMO every Jeep is a thing of beauty, even stock. Especially when they look mint.

There’s always been a good selection of XJs in decent shape in this area. Recently I’ve been seeing a lot of immaculately kept YJs driving around. Old guys must keep them in their garage and drive them out just for fun.

I have a lot of respect for anyone who can own a Jeep for 40 years, appreciate its simplicity, resist the temptation to modify it, and keep it mint


Having said that, nothing looks more badass than a lifted TJ

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