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Sorry for another iteration of the age-old question of Rubicon or Sahara but I currently drive an Audi sedan and have decided to buy a wrangler, but have never been off-roading. I will probably spend 90% of the time or more driving it to and from work ~10mi, but want to be able to take the kids off-roading some in Uwharrie.

If I were to get a Sahara I would buy Rubicon takeoffs day 1. I guess my question is can a Sahara with the take-offs handle much of the uwharrie trails? Sorry if its a dumb question... I dont necessarily want to do the hardest of trails but I would like to be able to do 50-75% of the trails without much worrying.

Thanks in advance
 

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All -

Sorry for another iteration of the age-old question of Rubicon or Sahara but I currently drive an Audi sedan and have decided to buy a wrangler, but have never been off-roading. I will probably spend 90% of the time or more driving it to and from work ~10mi, but want to be able to take the kids off-roading some in Uwharrie.

If I were to get a Sahara I would buy Rubicon takeoffs day 1. I guess my question is can a Sahara with the take-offs handle much of the uwharrie trails? Sorry if its a dumb question... I dont necessarily want to do the hardest of trails but I would like to be able to do 50-75% of the trails without much worrying.

Thanks in advance
A stock Sahara will be able to do 90% of the trails that a stock Rubicon can handle. You will still have 4-wheel drive and a transfer case with low gears.

You will get plenty of opinions, but no reason for you to spend extra money on a Rubicon (unless you really want one) with the use you described.
 

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I just took my JLUR to Uwharrie on easy and medium trails for the first time a few weeks ago, followed by some green trails at Big Creek Rocks the following week. At Uwharrie, there was a woman right behind me in a stock JLUR Sport that was able to get through the same trails, though at times she had to pick different lines than the rest of us or needed spotting in places that others didn’t. The blue trails at Big Creek would be much more difficult on a stock Sahara or Sport than on a Rubi. After those two runs, I was very glad I had the Rubi, mostly because I felt like I could take more time to decide on bigger mods. And it’s great as a daily driver, so I don’t feel as though I’ve had to make any real compromises there.

If you’re new to wheeling and would plan on modding a Sahara right off the bat, I’d actually recommend going with a Rubi instead. There’s a good chance that, after getting some miles under your belt, you’d decide with hindsight that you didn’t like some of your mod decisions. If you get a Rubi, you can keep it stock for a bit while you learn how to use it before deciding what mods, if any (ha) you want to do.

Those are my .02 for whatever they’re worth (.02 apparently).
 
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Saharas offer one key advantage over Rubicons that tends to be underrated IMO: when properly equipped with a rear limited slip differential and snow-rated all-terrain tires, a Sahara will allow you to cover great distances on snow-covered roads and poor winter driving conditions.

Rubicon’s front and rear lockers are designed to provide maximum traction at low speeds for short periods of time. The beauty of a limited slip is that it works all the time, automatically and seamlessly, allowing you to travel long distances at regular speeds in poor weather.

Jeep’s reintroduction of optional Select-Trac —with full-time 4WD— now makes Sahara’ winter driving capability even stronger.


Of course you can also add an aftermarket limited slip, such as a Detroit TrueTrac, to any non-Rubicon Wrangler and have an outstanding snow —and off-road— vehicle.
 

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Saharas offer one key advantage over Rubicons that tends to be underrated IMO: when properly equipped with a rear limited slip differential and snow-rated all-terrain tires, a Sahara will allow you to cover great distances on snow-covered roads and poor winter driving conditions.

Rubicon’s front and rear lockers are designed to provide maximum traction at low speeds for short periods of time. The beauty of a limited slip is that it works all the time, automatically and seamlessly, allowing you to travel long distances at regular speeds in poor weather.

Jeep’s reintroduction of optional Select-Trac —with full-time 4WD— now makes Sahara’ winter driving capability even stronger.


Of course you can also add an aftermarket limited slip, such as a Detroit TrueTrac, to any non-Rubicon Wrangler and have an outstanding snow —and off-road— vehicle.
Aldo- I'll never fight Fact with fiction. There is no refuting the fundamental physical truth of what you say - mechanically.

I'll just add my own experience having lived all over this great land - mostly in areas it snows a lot.
Now been back home in the Poconos for too many years but...anyway

My first Rubicon had lockers BUT a LSD too that was an '05 wish I still had it.
That rig got me across route 80 during a Blizzard that the State Police back in Ohio let me on as the "last" vevicle because of what I was driving .... and maybe a chat me and the Trooper had. Good Guy.

Anyway, since then I can count on one hand the number of times since I have looked outside and then at my Jeep (Rubicons included, several) and said "Ooooh I dunno ... I don't think You are going to get Me where I need to go" (That count is actually "0")

Then there are the other 1,000's of days that I drive a Rubicon because it's what I want to drive.

Will a Sport or Sahara or any of the other iterations of the Wrangler "get me there"? Yes.

Every Man and Woman has to simply decide - Which Jeep makes me turn my head when I'm walking away.... and Buy That one.

They will All get us where we need to go.

** Full Disclosure: If memory serves, here's my recollection.

Two (2) Grand Cherokees
Two (2) box shaped Cherokees
Two (2) Wranglers with the square headlights
Jk's and Jl's combined...
Four(4) Sports
Six (6) Saharas
Four (4) Rubicons

I didn't use the letters because first, I don't remember those and second I think a lot of people don't either.
That's a bunch of Jeeps .... Probably had more Toyotas but that's all a different story for a different time. Oh, then there's Camaro's and Mopars... (stop)
 

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Went on the back side of Daniel, which is a D-rated Trail at Uwharrie, a month ago with my Rubi on 37’s and 3” lift. Couple in front of me ran it no problem with a 6 month old baby in a car seat in a box Cherokee with no lift and 31” A/T tires. Granted the guy grew up there and knew the trails like the palm of his hand, but most of Uwharrie is doable for any Jeep.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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Aldo- I'll never fight Fact with fiction. There is no refuting the fundamental physical truth of what you say - mechanically.

I'll just add my own experience having lived all over this great land - mostly in areas it snows a lot.
Now been back home in the Poconos for too many years but...anyway

My first Rubicon had lockers BUT a LSD too that was an '05 wish I still had it.
That rig got me across route 80 during a Blizzard that the State Police back in Ohio let me on as the "last" vevicle because of what I was driving .... and maybe a chat me and the Trooper had. Good Guy.

Anyway, since then I can count on one hand the number of times since I have looked outside and then at my Jeep (Rubicons included, several) and said "Ooooh I dunno ... I don't think You are going to get Me where I need to go" (That count is actually "0")

Then there are the other 1,000's of days that I drive a Rubicon because it's what I want to drive.

Will a Sport or Sahara or any of the other iterations of the Wrangler "get me there"? Yes.

Every Man and Woman has to simply decide - Which Jeep makes me turn my head when I'm walking away.... and Buy That one.

They will All get us where we need to go.

** Full Disclosure: If memory serves, here's my recollection.

Two (2) Grand Cherokees
Two (2) box shaped Cherokees
Two (2) Wranglers with the square headlights
Jk's and Jl's combined...
Four(4) Sports
Six (6) Saharas
Four (4) Rubicons

I didn't use the letters because first, I don't remember those and second I think a lot of people don't either.
That's a bunch of Jeeps .... Probably had more Toyotas but that's all a different story for a different time. Oh, then there's Camaro's and Mopars... (stop)
Will you adopt me please? :jawdrop:
 

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Lol! The answer depends on what you want to use the Wrangler for. Serious off-roading? Resale value? Rubicon. Daily driver? Some luxury options? Sahara. IMHO.
 

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A Sport will have the best resale value.
Hmmm. Not refuting just would be interested in the hard fact backup to this.
That said, Do I personally think it matters - No.

When I am researching a stock fund - Yes But, when it comes to life's joy's - not so much.

I "buy" lots of stuff intellectually but then there are the emotional purchases (many) I'll drive the Jeep I want and to hell with opinions (not mine) and values measured by random this and that's....:)

just say'in

* I bought my JLUR at well below market while getting $32,000 in trade (on my JKURHR) with 85,000 miles on the clock and a door that wouldn't open.
The trade value was about $8,000 over book.... Jeeps are a funny thing.
 

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I bought a used ‘13 Sahara back in February. It took a bit to find one clean with 3.73’s, a LSD and a great color (Commando Green). At the time I didn’t think I’d want or need a Rubicon.

Eight months in I’ve done a few trails with some other Jeeps (Argentine Pass, Tin Cup, some others). I’ve never done the one you mentioned so I can’t compare. Of all the Jeeps, mine was the only one with stock suspension and tires. There’s was a newish Willy with larger tires and then everything else was either a Rubicon or else highly modified. We had a few scrapes on the bottom but never had need for more traction or lockers.

I have no interest in “rock crawling” right now but like a challenge. I know that I’ll be able to do 90% of what I want after doing a small lift and a slightly larger tire. I’ll probably do some sway bar disconnects in the spring and I might add a winch. Maybe down the road I’ll add a rear locker. I keep telling my wife that I’m building a functional Jeep, not one that looks like it can do things. All go, not much show. She wants the show.

If you want to get a Rubicon because you think you’ll want to do harder stuff or you like the look, get it. If you opt for a Sahara or Sport you’ll be very surprised at what you can without doing anything other than learning from others that have done it all and more.
 
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Hmmm. Not refuting just would be interested in the hard fact backup to this.
That said, Do I personally think it matters - No.

When I am researching a stock fund - Yes But, when it comes to life's joy's - not so much.

I "buy" lots of stuff intellectually but then there are the emotional purchases (many) I'll drive the Jeep I want and to hell with opinions (not mine) and values measured by random this and that's....:)

just say'in

* I bought my JLUR at well below market while getting $32,000 in trade (on my JKURHR) with 85,000 miles on the clock and a door that wouldn't open.
The trade value was about $8,000 over book.... Jeeps are a funny thing.
It's actually true. I was told that once and didn't believe it so I looked it up. Rubicons have worse resale value than sports.

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For what it’s worth I love the look of the Rubicon but wanted a few of the more comfort oriented options which are more frequently specc’d on the Saharas. I also only wanted a soft top not dual or hard. I managed to find a Sahara with pretty much perfect spec for me, then bought a set of off-take Rubicon wheels and tires for $1k so I have pretty much my ideal Wrangler for about $6-7k less than an equivalent Rubi. Looks great, drives great and is a better car for me on road the 90% of its use and perfectly capable off road for what I need.

Here’s a pic for the record.
 

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It's actually true. I was told that once and didn't believe it so I looked it up. Rubicons have worse resale value than sports.

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This wasn’t always the case. My 2009, 2012 and 2013 Rubicons held their value incredibly well and sold fast.

My 2018 Recon...not so much. It showed a $17,000 depreciation, from MSRP, by the time I traded it in after one year. Luckily, in the price negotiation over my Tacoma, I got the Toyota dealer to absorb much of the deficit*.

From what I’m seeing, due to significant MSRP increases, new JL Rubicons require hefty discounts to sell. That alone puts a big dent on resale values right out of the gate.

* I suspect Toyota offers its dealers “conquest” cash to help close deals with buyers trading in a competitor’s vehicle.
 

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If you will keep it stock then the Sahara; but if you get the bug like most of us here you'd want to mod. I don't trust the Sahara front axles with big tires. Rubicons with their stronger axles are better for mods.

Unless you really get the mod bug and go crazy, then get a Sport.
 

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They are all Wranglers, they will all go just about anywhere, just no where fast.

The Sport- for the people that don't have money to blow but still want a Wrangler or someone that already has a list or stock pile of parts thats about to build a beast.

The Sahara- for the people who like a few interior creature comforts, thats what the initial Sahara was all about, arrive anywhere in comfort and style.

The Rubicon- for the people that have a ton of money or huge credit line and want the "top of the line". Its not a bad choice but if you ask me not really needed unless you really plan to go serious into overlanding and REALLY off the grid.
Does anyone know where the Rubi got its name from?

Any Wrangler will be able to keep up with the right driver.
Learn to read a trail line and know what your rig can do and what it can't.
Just cause it isn't a Rubi doesn't mean squat.
I love my Sahara as I work out of it alot, the inverter will be upgraded soon.
The Heated Seats are a dream on the way home at 2am door and topless for the passenger, well I do like them too.
 
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