Rubicon Express 5.5″ Extreme Duty XJ kit

Installation date: 11/02

Introduction | Rear Install | Front Install | Testing and Conclusions

Most folks I’ve talked to that have this kit reported getting 6″ or more of lift, but after some settling and breaking in, I’m getting exactly 5.5″ of lift measured against a stock 2001 XJ. I’m probably going to go back and add about an inch of lift front and rear, but for now the height is working quite well. RE designed their 6200 kit to run 33’s, which it’s perfect for, but with a little extra work (read: fender trimming), you can easily run 35’s under this lift, which is what I’m doing.

The on-road ride and handling is great, the drop brackets help the suspension soak up bumps and the vehicle feels more stable overall, even with the bigger tires. Off-road, the suspension flexes incredibly well, as you can see below. If flexed so well in fact, that I had to extend my rear bumpstops to keep from inverting the leafs at full flex and extend my front bumpstops to keep my 35’s from trying to pull of the Bushwacker flares. My shocks are currently limiting my down travel, so I’m looking into raising the shock mounts on the axles to gain some additional droop.

The drop brackets do eat up some ground clearance, but I have yet to hear anyone else with the kit really complain about it. I’ve hit mine once so far offroad, but that was because I wasn’t paying attention as I was going over a rock ledge. Since the drop brackets come down right behind the tires, it really is pretty hard to catch or hit them on something.

At the time of writing this article, I’ve had the lift installed about 9 months and I really couldn’t be happier. As I’ve mentioned through this review, the on and off-road performance of this kit is outstanding. I know I probably sound like an infomercial when I say that, but it’s the truth, I really can’t say enough good things about this kit. To date, the only real problem I’ve had is that my leafs are squeaking a bit at the moment, but I think I just need to go back and retorque my u-bolts.

If you’re looking for a 5-6″ lift to run 33’s or 35’s on your XJ, you really can’t go wrong with RE’s 5.5″ Extreme Duty kit.

Rubicon Express products are available through our own

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3 Comments so far

  1. Bobby June 19th, 2011 9:50 am

    Thanks for this post – I am looking for a lift at about this height. I have a 3” pro comp lift currently, and I have an SYE and custom driveshaft already installed. What I am wondering is what other things I will need to do (besides purchasing a kit like this) to run 35s. I know I will need to regear, but what about brakes, brake lines, possibly a longer rear drive shaft?, better steering components, shocks, steering stabilizer, etc. Thanks a lot.


  2. Jeepin Jason June 19th, 2011 11:56 am

    Any lift kit of this height will come with all the suspension related components you’ll need, including brakelines, swaybar disconnects, etc. Depending on the brand, the kit may or may not come with shocks (if it doesn’t include shocks standard, you’ll need to get some). You’ll also need an SYE and CV driveshaft, but you’ve already got those.

    Gears are a must. If you’ve got a D35 or a 27-spline Chrysler 8.25″ rear axle you’ll need to swap those out as well. (The 27sp C8.25 can be upgraded to 29-splines).

    Steering just depends on the condition of your current parts. If you’re still running all stock steering I’d recommend at least upgrading to a heavy-duty tierod if you wheel the Jeep at all, regardless of tire size.

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