Reconsidering the 2019 JL Rubicon - Anyone Else?

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MORTON

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There is nothing wrong with converting a Sport to look like a Rubicon. Tons of people do this, but you need to realize that simply adding some lift and the Rubicon wheels/tires isn't as simple as you might think. Adding the lift and larger tires to a Sport will knock your fuel mileage down and could turn your rig into a proverbial slug, unless you don't care about acceleration. It will also make your brakes less effective without upgrading them. It might look cooler to you, but you might not enjoy driving it as much.
I wouldn’t put even 35’s on my Sport without re-gearing lol

Running 33’s right now no issues though :)





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Strommen95

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A Rubicon should be bought for function, not looks. It’s really easy to make a Sport or Sahara look how you want. It’s a lot harder/more expensive to make them function like a Rubicon between the 44 up front/sway bar/lockers/4.10s/fitting 35s stock.

Here’s a picture of my Sport S with 285-70-17 tires. Since then I’ve changed the emblems to black. Looks great and rides perfectly for my needs, I couldn’t be happier. I’m sure I would’ve been happy with a Rubicon, but I would’ve been too content with how it is out of the factory rather than do exactly what I want. In a few years I’ll regear to 4.56 or 4.88 and get larger Duratracs.

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sgtkersh

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I did the opposite this time. My last Jeep was a 2013 JKU base Sport. Nothing in it except Uconnect. Everything manual. I knew I wanted to build it like I wanted and put the dollars and time into it. I did most work myself and ballpark this is what it cost me. Tires and wheels $1800, 2” lift $1200 (fairly complete with track bars and lower control arms to make geometry was correct), steel bumpers $1100, rock rails $600, fenders $800, and then finally gearing and a limited slip (Eaton) in the rear at $2000ish because all that extra stuff made the Jeep a dog with 3.21 gears and I wanted/needed limited slip for additional traction. I did all the work except the gearing, It would have cost a lot more if I had to pay for labor, but mostly when I needed help I paid for pizza and beer.

This time I decided to not do that and buy the best capable Jeep off the lot and have a 2019 JL Rubicon. I couldn’t be happier with my decision, but I also need/want the off road capabilities. If you don’t need them, they are a waste. I put a lot more into my JKU then I listed since I did use it heavily off road, but what I listed above is what I think it would take to make a Sport look like a Rubicon. You can stretch your dollars further by just simply buying Rubicon take-offs as those owners upgrade as well.
 

rkj__

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One thing y’all need to remember, is that a manufacturer needs to sell a lot of units to justify the economics of an upgraded / off road edition / trim level of a vehicle.

If FCA only sold Rubicons to people who routinely use all the upgraded off road features, the package would be more expensive, less feature rich, or not exist at all.

Think of that, before you turn your nose up at people who don’t “look” like they know what a ring and pinion is.
 

jameslavis

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I’ve stayed away from a Rubi as I would have no use as a daily commuter and tow machine in boat ramps. It sees mud and water but not the off-road trails for fun type. In Canada, that ruin is 60-65k. Got my sport s unlimited for 41k. I’ll do the small mods I like to keep my 25mpg.
 

UKCATS

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We're not "off-roaders" or "Sturgis" types... and our beautiful new 2019 Rubicon JL 2dr will never see the trails, or mud, or rocks, or anything like that. We bought it for "boulevard cruising" and traveling in a cool vehicle with the top down. We had to have the Rubicon "look," which you can't get in any other stock Wrangler - unfortunately - because we ended up paying for a lot of stuff we don't need and will never use (the off-road capability).

And... after driving it for 6 months... I guess... If we had to do it all over again... we'd probably opt to get a Sport and modify it to look like the Rubicon - which would save a lot of money, and we'd likely be happier with what we got.

It's too bad... FCA... can't offer such an option. Or, maybe they do... and... we just didn't realize it.

What would we change?

1st - we'd get a much more fuel efficient rear axle (3.2 or 3.5 gear ratio). You can't afford to change the 4.11 ratio to a more fuel efficient option, because you'd never recover the cost in fuel savings. And... it probably needs a 10spd trans, rather than just an 8sp.

2nd - we'd like an upgraded / modified front steering set up to eliminate the steering wander and overly sensitive steering, which is actually dangerous on the expressways with heavy traffic. Oh yes... we've done all the things the factory recommends (and owners) to "fix" this problem, but it still wanders a bit, and is way too sensitive to input. And... we don't wan't to start installing a bunch of "after-market," custom parts to try and improve it further, if it can be - which most of the custom shops suggest is not likely. If you've never owned a Wrangler, and are considering one... be aware... it's not going to steer like any other vehicle you've driven - it's not designed to.

3rd - we'd make all the cosmetic options of the Rubicon available on the Sport (e.g. the lift, the tires & wheels, the body colored fenders, the body colored hard top, and all of the other options the Rubicon has that the Sport doesn't.

4th - we'd make the dual top option available from the time the new model is available, or grant early buyers a credit to apply to the puchase of the soft top, when available later. We were able to get only one or the other, not both - we got the body colored hard-top - and, it will cost us more to add the soft top now that it's available.

We could go on... but... you get the point.

As I said - if we had to do it over - we'd likely just get the Sport and have it customized to look like the Rubicon. And... in the process... who knows... we might even have avoided the steering wander of the stock Rubicon. So... if you haven't ordered your's yet... you may want to reconsider.
Maybe a Honda Pilot with the blackout package is more your speed?
 

rkj__

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Maybe a Honda Pilot with the blackout package is more your speed?
You can’t really cruise with the top down on a Honda Pilot though, so I doubt that is what the OP is looking for.
 

SGT4774

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Maybe a Honda Pilot with the blackout package is more your speed?
Another thing to keep in mind is the Rubicon will hold better resale value. The 2dr Wranglers are scarce and I bet in 3-4 yrs the 2dr will no longer be in production. Breaks my heart.
 

UKCATS

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You can’t really cruise with the top down on a Honda Pilot though, so I doubt that is what the OP is looking for.
Apparently not Jeep people. A Pilot will drive more to there liking. Lord forbid if they had bought a TJ.

Another thing to keep in mind is the Rubicon will hold better resale value. The 2dr Wranglers are scarce and I bet in 3-4 yrs the 2dr will no longer be in production. Breaks my heart.

Bite you tongue! #2doorsforever
 

MORTON

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Another thing to keep in mind is the Rubicon will hold better resale value.
Actually that’s not true. We did an entire thread on this and found out that down the line they end being almost the same value. Within 2k of each other.
 

GreyFox

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Actually that’s not true. We did an entire thread on this and found out that down the line they end being almost the same value. Within 2k of each other.
Plus, we aren't paying for all those bells and whistles:like:
 

Sean K.

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Seems to me the OP would likely be no better off had they bought the Sport, consdiering #1 and #3 cancel themselves out. They clearly don't understand tires and gear ratios and how they affect gas mileage.

In short, they bought something that didn't suit their needs opting for something that stroked their ego. We all do it. Hell, I've bought one of the most impractical vehicles ever made....

When you buy a vehicle that is completely impractical you have to decide if it fills a special role or just has a special meaning to you. If not, there's nothing wrong with admitting it and moving on. Now that the initial infatuation has worn off, it sounds like a good time to reevaluate whether or not the Jeep is still their best choice, but from where I sit, it doesn't sound like the Sport would be much of an improvement over their Rubicon considering it would still have all but #4 of the issues they listed if they follow through with doing #3.
 
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Sean K.

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Actually that’s not true. We did an entire thread on this and found out that down the line they end being almost the same value. Within 2k of each other.
Not what I've found in my area....BUT...asking price isn't negotiated price either.
 

JLUin818

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Seems to me the OP would likely be no better off had they bought the Sport, consdiering #1 and #3 cancel themselves out. They clearly don't understand tires and gear ratios and how they affect gas mileage.

In short, they bought something that didn't suit their needs opting for something that stroked their ego. We all do it. Hell, I've bought one of the most impractical vehicles ever made....

When you buy a vehicle that is completely impractical you have to decide if it fills a special role or just has a special meaning to you. If not, there's nothing wrong with admitting it and moving on. Now that the initial infatuation has worn off, it sounds like a good time to reevaluate whether or not the Jeep is still their best choice, but from where I sit, it doesn't sound like the Sport would be much of an improvement over their Rubicon considering it would still have all but #4 of the issues they listed if they follow through with doing #3.
Idk, i have rubi tires and still get decent mpg. The rubi is quite a bit heavier than sport and the gears makes a difference as well.

Im in the opposite boat as OP. I wish i would have lied,cheated,stole and schemed to come up with the extra $10-12k to get into a Rubi since it would certainly fit my needs better. Too bad they dont make a stripper version of the rubi. A hardcore, stripped version if you will. Roll up windows and lockers.

Jeep knows what theyre doing. I see a ton of JL Rubis everyday now. Most are probably pavement pounders/commuters but they keep the Rubi alive. Just like the Z06 (actually Z is worse since 99% will never see a track)

One day i hope to be able to sit at the cool kids table :(
 

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