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View Full Version : Does it make sense to buy a rubicon?



Chairokey
05-27-2012, 12:47 PM
If someone wanted to leave their Jeep stock, sure a Rubicon would be a great choice. But if you plan to build your Jeep, could you not make a sport better than a Rubicon with less money than the difference in base price? Is $6,000 really worth the upgraded Rock-Trac transfer case and Tru-Lock differentials? I'm really not positive what the difference is between the regular transfer case and differentials and the Rubicons upgraded parts.. Also I didn't add the wheels and tires as a deciding factor because most are likely to upgrade those anyway..

Prime8
05-27-2012, 02:22 PM
Going through the same inner struggle, but decided to upgrade to a '13 Rubicon in October from my 2010 Mountain Edition (a Sport with a trim package...) for the following reasons:
1. Front D44
2. 4:1 T Case
3. Locking differentials
However, these alone weren't necessarily enough for me to justify the upgrade. For me, the biggest thing was getting the new engine/tranny.
I'd love to have an Atlas T-case, a front PR44, and ARB airlockers front and rear, but I currently don't really wheel enough to justify those beefy upgrades. Illinois isn't exactly a wheeling mecca. If I'm able to move west again, I will seriously be considering those upgrades, but for now the Rubicons components will be sufficient.

Prime8
05-27-2012, 02:30 PM
If someone wanted to leave their Jeep stock, sure a Rubicon would be a great choice. But if you plan to build your Jeep, could you not make a sport better than a Rubicon with less money than the difference in base price? Is $6,000 really worth the upgraded Rock-Trac transfer case and Tru-Lock differentials? I'm really not positive what the difference is between the regular transfer case and differentials and the Rubicons upgraded parts.. Also I didn't add the wheels and tires as a deciding factor because most are likely to upgrade those anyway..

BTW, regular t case is 2.3:1 (?) and only Rubicons have locking differentials. For $5000 you can get a loaded PR44. For ~$2000 you can get the Atlas case, and for $1000 you can get the rear ARB locker (add
$200+ for compressor). So for $8200 you can have parts better than Rubicon stock parts. Add in a grand or two for Install... All said and done, you'd probably be around $10k. Yes the components are better, but you also need to come up with that money out-of-pocket, whereas you can finance the Rubicon.

Chairokey
05-27-2012, 02:53 PM
Truth. Thanks for doing the research that I was too lazy to do haha. I suppose the Rubicon buys you time so that you can focus your attention elsewhere and not have to worry about those components right away since they are capable of doing the job just fine..

Indefatigable
05-27-2012, 02:56 PM
Perhaps the threshold mod that one might make to determine if Rubi or non-Rubi would be the way to go... long arm kit. If you are going far enough to cut out the suspension and replace it and the frame mounts, might as well do everything.

Pretty much what I did with my LJ. Non-rubi and then put in D44s, Atlas and long arms.

Suggestion. If you are going Atlas. Forget about the 2 speed. Go 4 speed. 3.8 or 4.3 with the 2.7. Cable shifters for all. I found the 4spd radically changes the capabilities of the vehicle compared to a 2 speed. Enables better "touring" and "creepy crawling"

Prime8
05-27-2012, 06:19 PM
Perhaps the threshold mod that one might make to determine if Rubi or non-Rubi would be the way to go... long arm kit. If you are going far enough to cut out the suspension and replace it and the frame mounts, might as well do everything.

Pretty much what I did with my LJ. Non-rubi and then put in D44s, Atlas and long arms.

Suggestion. If you are going Atlas. Forget about the 2 speed. Go 4 speed. 3.8 or 4.3 with the 2.7. Cable shifters for all. I found the 4spd radically changes the capabilities of the vehicle compared to a 2 speed. Enables better "touring" and "creepy crawling"

I'll be getting the '13 Rubi and promptly putting on the EVO Double D long arm kit. Which is why I didn't factor-in the suspension in my above calculations. Although, one of the few take-offs that sells regularly is the Rubi suspension... And since my brackets will be permanently removed, I won't have a use for the stock suspension ever again.

TX_JK
05-27-2012, 07:11 PM
In 2002 i bought a brand new TJ X model. I didn't know anything about jeeps. That TJ had a D30 front and a D35 rear. My first wheeling trip i snapped a rear axle shaft on the D35. So i started my research to see what i could do to beef things up. Long story short, i ended up putting a Ford 8.8 rear axle, a Super 30 kit in the front, ARB air lockers front/rear, re-geared to 4:88, installed a TeraLow 4:1 transfer case and ran Superior axle shafts front/rear.

All those mods were done over a period of about 3 years. I wheeled that jeep for almost 10 yrs before i sold it. When i was looking for a new JK i immediately knew i wanted to go straight to the Rubicon. I basically spent all my money on the first jeep to get it to Rubicon status or maybe even a little better.

With the Rubicon purchase i'm already where my old TJ was. Sure i'll end up doing mods to it but straight off the lot it already has more wheeling capability than my old TJ.

Plus i love the electronic locks in the Rubicon vs the ARB air lockers i had in my TJ.

Disclaimer: Yes i know dollar for dollar its less expensive to buy a base model jeep and then put your own axles, transfer case, gears, additional upgrades to it. But it depends on how hardcore you ultimately want your rig to be. For my wheeling/driving/daily driver style i knew that buying a Rubicon and then adding a few additional items was the perfect scenario.

And as others have said in this thread, its also important to factor in being able to 'finance' a jeep as capable as a Rubicon vs having to come out of your pocket with cash to buy the mods to build stock jeep.

Would i love to have a pair of Dynatrac ProRock 60's? You bet i would. And its not out of the realm of possibility down the road. :D Just sayin. :bleh: :doh:

RedRockIt
05-27-2012, 07:45 PM
Absolutely get the Rubi!

I was thinking along th same lines as you. Why pay extra for stuff I'll replace anyways? But unless you already ha e all the parts sitting in your garage, the best bet is to get the rubi so that your wheeling experience is much better until all the upgrades arrive.

Also you can get more money selling rubi parts ie suspension, axles etc then you can sport parts. Which in turn can help you fund ur upgrades.

Take it from me, I have a 2012 sport and already wish I had bought a Rubi :/

StrizzyChris
05-27-2012, 08:50 PM
Absolutely get the Rubi!
Also you can get more money selling rubi parts ie suspension, axles etc then you can sport parts. Which in turn can help you fund ur upgrades.


I have a sahara and wish I would have got the Rubi. It allows you to build it as the money comes in and still have a tough offroad capable jeep, rather than all at once to have the same capability. I was under the mindset of why buy it, if ill later replace it. I was wrong!
With my sahara I dont want to put a penny into my D30 front that is worthless(relitively) on aftermarket compared to the Rubi D44 that people are fetching good cash for.

PS in my signature box, the wheels and tires are not on my jeep yet because I dont have my 1 tons. :banghead:

MikeLisa
05-27-2012, 09:17 PM
I have a Sport and with all I have seen and read in this forum and Wayalife I wish I'd gotten a Rubi. I'm hoping in about 2 years I'll trade mine for a Rubi and any mobs will hopefully be transferable.

Indefatigable
05-27-2012, 09:36 PM
I have done the build slow thing (95 YJ from new) and the build all at once (05 LJ gently used).

I understand the financing thing. Personal POV, should not be financing a toy that you could accidently destroy any time out.

I have seen alot of TJ/LJ Rubicon builds. They cost way more to get almost close to where I ended up with my LJ. Same idea as the JK, just different flavour.

Something I have seen and is worth considering. Slow builds that get wheeled regular... the vehicle takes a terrible toll and wears out before the mods you plan on doing are worn out. Alot more pounding and so forth that it would not have if in its end mod condition. Think mounts: body, axle, suspension, seats, YOUR BACK!

YMMV

ichthus
05-29-2012, 10:51 AM
One huge advantage not mentioned directly so far is resale value. The Rubicon will hold a noticeable advantage.

On the flip side, that 4:1 Transfer Case could be a disadvantage in Illinois. Not enough rocks, too much mud and sand

ichthus
05-29-2012, 12:00 PM
Which could leave you the option of selling the Rubi transfer case to fund a more versatile Atlas.

wayoflife
05-29-2012, 02:42 PM
If someone wanted to leave their Jeep stock, sure a Rubicon would be a great choice. But if you plan to build your Jeep, could you not make a sport better than a Rubicon with less money than the difference in base price? Is $6,000 really worth the upgraded Rock-Trac transfer case and Tru-Lock differentials? I'm really not positive what the difference is between the regular transfer case and differentials and the Rubicons upgraded parts.. Also I didn't add the wheels and tires as a deciding factor because most are likely to upgrade those anyway..

i've bought both a fully loaded rubicon and a barebone stock X (sport now) and built it up and, when i had an opportunity to do it again, i got a fully loaded rubicon. in my opinion, it makes so much more sense to do if only to get the 4:1 transfer case, electronic sway bar disconnect, dana 44 front axle, lockers front and rear, mygig stereo and nicer interior. if you plan on doing upgrades, the axles can be sold for a good price and there are eager buyers everywhere.

Hightower
05-29-2012, 03:11 PM
This might be one of the first times I am going to disagree with Eddie but for me I would have bought the sport 2 wheel drive. Because nothing or almost nothing of my Rubi is going to be left when I am done with my build from the axles to the engine, transfer case, seats, suspension, exhaust, tires/wheels and so on. I am not into buying things twice even though I seem to do it all the time.lol But saying that it really depends on where you want your JK to end up when your build is done as to whether a Rubi is right for you.:twocents::twocents:

wayoflife
05-29-2012, 03:21 PM
This might be one of the first times I am going to disagree with Eddie but for me I would have bought the sport 2 wheel drive. Because nothing or almost nothing of my Rubi is going to be left when I am done with my build from the axles to the engine, transfer case, seats, suspension, exhaust, tires/wheels and so on. I am not into buying things twice even though I seem to do it all the time.lol But saying that it really depends on where you want your JK to end up when your build is done as to whether a Rubi is right for you.:twocents::twocents:

LOL!! you know, in all fairness, i might have agreed with you on this if it weren't for the new 2012 and the 3.6L pentastar engine that it comes with. with it, i feel absolutely no desire to get a hemi. if anything, i really want one in our 07 and would do so over a hemi. as it is, i'm plenty happy with the factory 4:1 transfer case and have no desires to replace it. the rubicon seats are more comfortable and, while changing them out is nice, it's not something that i feel i need to do. already sold the wheels and tires and will sell the axles to help pay for prorocks someday. still, you can't get a swaybar disco unit on anything but a rubicon and the same is true about the mygig head unit of which i love. but, like you, i suppose it all depends on where you want your build to be when all is said and done :yup:

piginajeep
05-29-2012, 03:29 PM
If you buy the jeep from costco, the price from a Rubicon to a loaded X (to get power windows). Its was less than 4 grand in difference. Its really not much. You can surely get that money back when you sell the 44's and rubicon rims and tires.

Blonda
05-29-2012, 05:23 PM
:twocents: If you wheel a lot, the Elec Sway bar disconnect is well worth the $6K IMO ;) :D

Hightower
05-29-2012, 05:56 PM
:twocents: If you wheel a lot, the Elec Sway bar disconnect is well worth the $6K IMO ;) :D

Hay layoff I didn't say lets go overlanding.. lol:cheesy::cheesy:

wayoflife
05-29-2012, 05:57 PM
Hay guys I didn't say lets go overlanding layoff.. lol:cheesy::cheesy:

:cheesy: it's all good my friend :D

piginajeep
05-29-2012, 05:59 PM
:twocents: If you wheel a lot, the Elec Sway bar disconnect is well worth the $6K IMO ;) :D

i really agree with this statement :thumb:

Hightower
05-29-2012, 06:01 PM
:cheesy: it's all good my friend :D

I am going out right now to buy a big hat and get the overlanding manual and teach you all whets what....:icon_crazy::icon_crazy:lol

wayoflife
05-29-2012, 06:18 PM
I am going out right now to buy a big hat and get the overlanding manual and teach you all whets what....:icon_crazy::icon_crazy:lol

nice try but, you would need a roof rack and snorkel before you could have anything useful to say :cheesy:

ZERO LIMITZ
05-29-2012, 06:29 PM
I purchased a Rubicon because, when I purchased it I knew it was going to be my daily driver but I also wanted to be able to play when I had the opportunity. After I went out one time in it the mod bug bit me and now I'm going bigger and modding way more than i ever planned on..... But I have no regrets in buying a Rubicon

Sharkey
05-29-2012, 06:39 PM
Not everyone can instantly dump $15k into a sport to make it like a Rubicon. I bought a Rubicon knowing my build would take a lot of time...and also knowing that in its stock form it would take me places that other vehicles (even lifted vehicles without lockers and sway bar disconnects) simply can't go.

I can disconnect my front sway bar, lock my rear axle, and slowly climb up rutted, loose, steep hills that threw fits at my old K5 Blazer with a 4" lift. I used to have to keep momentum and go balls to the wall (and keep the stereo cranked so I didn't hear what I was breaking) whereas now I can can drive slow, controlled, and go easy on my rig. For me, the Rubicon was well worth the price of admission.

Indefatigable
05-30-2012, 12:12 AM
:twocents: If you wheel a lot, the Elec Sway bar disconnect is well worth the $6K IMO ;) :D

Anti-rocks are a pretty nice bling replacement though!

Prime8
05-30-2012, 01:38 AM
Chairokey, I'm really glad you started this thread. I was orginally of the mindset "buy cheap and upgrade" but after months and months of researching and talking and reading, I made up my mind on trading up to a '13 Rubicon a couple months back, once October rolls around... I picked Eddie's brain extensively over the matter and was feeling confident in my decision. This thread helped me solidify that mindset even further. So thanks for a great topic. Now, I just need to get EVO to use my new jeep as their "will our current designs work on the new 2013" guinea pig and I'll be all set! Haha.

TX_JK
05-30-2012, 01:47 AM
http://tinyurl.com/23gehbv

Don't let the Rubicon haters get you down. LOL :cheesy:

Chairokey
05-30-2012, 03:26 AM
Chairokey, I'm really glad you started this thread. I was orginally of the mindset "buy cheap and upgrade" but after months and months of researching and talking and reading, I made up my mind on trading up to a '13 Rubicon a couple months back, once October rolls around... I picked Eddie's brain extensively over the matter and was feeling confident in my decision. This thread helped me solidify that mindset even further. So thanks for a great topic. Now, I just need to get EVO to use my new jeep as their "will our current designs work on the new 2013" guinea pig and I'll be all set! Haha.

Haha no problem. You know.. I'm a little disappointed now that I bought the 2 door sport. It wasn't until after I bought the jeep that I started to watch jeep videos. I always knew I wanted one but never knew what real wheeling was. In hindsight I really wish I would have held out for a rubicon unlimited. I've got half a mind right now to instead of upgrading my jeep, putting all that "upgrade money" into paying alot of this thing off and trading it in for a 2013 rubicon unlimited. Of course thats assuming they stick with the pentastar or something even better. Otherwise I'd be fine with a lightly used 2012 model :)

piginajeep
05-30-2012, 05:20 AM
Not everyone can instantly dump $15k into a sport to make it like a Rubicon. I bought a Rubicon knowing my build would take a lot of time...and also knowing that in its stock form it would take me places that other vehicles (even lifted vehicles without lockers and sway bar disconnects) simply can't go.

I can disconnect my front sway bar, lock my rear axle, and slowly climb up rutted, loose, steep hills that threw fits at my old K5 Blazer with a 4" lift. I used to have to keep momentum and go balls to the wall (and keep the stereo cranked so I didn't hear what I was breaking) whereas now I can can drive slow, controlled, and go easy on my rig. For me, the Rubicon was well worth the price of admission.

good advice

Prime8
05-30-2012, 11:16 AM
Don't let the Rubicon haters get you down. LOL :cheesy:

Don't see anyone "hating"... Not sure what you're talking about.

Hightower
05-30-2012, 02:23 PM
nice try but, you would need a roof rack and snorkel before you could have anything useful to say :cheesy:

Lol..........