"I see a lot of reviews, most of them, about how much fun the Jeep is to drive around town. Let me tell you about how it performs on the trail --- can't be beat. The 4:1 gearing coupled with the I6 engine is a perfect match. Mine has the 6 spd standard tranny. I rarely use 6th gear, just on interstate when above 65 mph. I put a 4" lift in it, a winch, 33" tires. I have climbed rocks with it at such an angle the power steering pump had trouble pumping the fluid -- but in 4wheel low range I just gave it a little more gas and got over the obstacle in fine shape. When I disconnect the front sway bars the front axle articulates so well that all four wheels stay on the ground in spots a horse would have trouble walking through. The solid front axel is the most important feature of a Jeep -- other off road vehicles have independent front suspension, which is great for a smoot hiway ride. But in realy rough spots they will typically have a wheel come off the ground. The great articulation of the Jeep improves the capability by not loosing any traction. When going down extremely steep grades I put it in 1st gear low range and the compression lets it just creep down without having to use the brake. This gives the drive extreme control of the vehicle, and that is very important when descending steep grades. When climbing steep grades the Jeep does the same; it has so much low end torque I can just let the clutch out in 1st gear and it will walk up just about anything. In fact, when in 4wh low the Rubicon standard will not stall even when you stand on the brake. I don't do this regularly, but what it does allow is the ability to crawl at ultra-slow speeds to get over and through really tough spots without having any bounce -- you're complete control. I have been in a couple of situations where I used the winch only to ensure I wouldn't flip over backwards. The Jeep climbed a wall under its own power, the winch was just a precaution. I had three passengers, two got out before I did the climb, one stayed in and was completely amazed. The Jeep Wrangler is a very light vehicle, which gives it a lot of advantages. One disadvantage is when in high winds on the hiway. But is has great suspension and steering control, and rides very smooth even with big MTR tires. If you plan to buy a Rubicon stay with the factory rims -- don't let the deep rims and wide tire look fool you. You do get a bigger foot print and it gives you a lot of extra capability, but the standard width of a Wrangler is much narrower than similar size vehicles and wide tires takes that away. I had 12.5 wide mudders on it for a while and went back to the original wheel and 10" wide tires -- it feels like when I get home from work and take off my boots and put my walking shoes on -- much more control. Also the wider tires will diminish your mileage that much more. If you plan to buy a Jeep Wrangler as a daily driver you might be disappointed. It is fun to drive around town, and it looks great. But it is best off road -- it should be driven like it is intended to be used as much as possible. I have not had a single problem, and don't expect I will. Finally, if you do go off road a lot just remember, after the journey you should crawl under the Jeep and check things out, make sure nothing has loosened, look for dings that might turn into problems later (yes the underside of most Jeeps will have dings, nicks, scrapes). the Rubicon has really good factory armor underneath, and there is a ton of after market stuff you can add, but I think it is mostly unnecessary. As long as you learn the vehicles characteristics, width, length, where the tires track, you won't have any problems. Keep the oil, filters, and differential and transfer case fluids changed regularly, like the manual says and the thing will run forever."
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