Words: Kristie Bertucci
Going the extra mile for customers isn’t uncommon for Rebel Off Road. When one of their VIP customers sought out help for a new Jeep build, the team was more than happy to provide their expertise. In the past, this particular client had experience building “BMW performance tuner cars” like supercharged M3s with wide body kits, but when he saw the JK, it was love at first sight.
Since all his other rides were one-off customs, the Jeep needed to have its own identity, with Rebel Off-Road’s Matt “Rebeltaco” Maghaddom assigned the task of creating a “street-driven Jeep” that would stand out above the rest. Matt and the rest of the Rebel Off Road team were up for the challenge and quickly went to work on the design.
What they came up with was a great looking performance rig that could hold its own on the dirt and sand, but still provide a smooth commute along L.A. freeways. “The initial design was tall, big wheels, big tires, performance, in white and black with red accents, and a sweet suspension showing off some King coilovers,” Matt says. “It came out exactly how he wanted the build to look.”
Its Smittybilt exterior protection – which includes XRC front fenders, rear corner guards, body cladding, front bumper and rear bumper, tire carrier and winch – were requested specifically by the owner after they caught his eye at a previous show, while its 24×12 KC XD Rockstar II wheels piqued his interest after admiring them on other off-road builds. The 40×15.50×24 Toyo Open Country M/T tires were chosen for their tall size and their quiet demeanor on the street since the JK would be a daily driver, as well as their longevity.
To provide it with a unique look, Matt went with a Fuel Off-Road Jeep JK grille, AEV heat reduction hood, Rugged Ridge hood catches and Amp Research automatic steps. No Jeep build would be complete without auxiliary LED lighting to illuminate the way, so Matt opted for Rigid Industries LED Lighting products because “they’re the brightest on the market, have many mounting options and are the best in quality.”
To grant the owner’s wish of a performance suspension, Matt used Rebel Off Road’s Recon coilover conversion kit, along with a Teraflex Long Arm suspension combined with King 2.3×12” coilover shocks with a remote reservoir to keep the Jeep’s ride smooth and bump-free on any terrain. “The Teraflex JK Dana 60 Axles were chosen for strength, and because they retain 5-on-5 bolt patter.”
And since performance was the theme, more horsepower came courtesy of a Magnuson Supercharger for “a Roots type blower to deliver power in all areas of the RMP band- from low-end torque to high-RPM shifting,” says Matt. It also boasts a custom Magnuson Tune and a Magnaflow exhaust system that lets it roar with power.
The interior upholstery was done up in a custom red Katzkin leather that immediately catches your eye when you jump into the JK, along with its custom-painted red Mopar interior trim pieces and slush mats. Blasting the Jeep’s soundtrack are two JL Audio subwoofers, Audison tweeters and mid-range speakers, while a Pioneer AVIC-7000NEX controls it all.
Completing the project took approximately six months, and the owner was “beyond impressed” with the final product and premiered his custom JK that he nicknamed “Cascade” on his and Rebel Off-Road’s Instagram accounts. “The customer landed on that name because its signifies powerful, fast movement of white water, and being a white Jeep, it is just seemed to fit. It was a highlight on major social networking accounts.” Matt says. “It definitely had tons of interest and admiration for its over-the-top style.”
Although it’s a daily-driven Jeep, the owner didn’t waster any time to test the ride off pavement. According to Matt. “It has a smooth ride on harsh, washboard roads and rocky terrain. And its handles desert whoops fantastically.”
With “Cascade” now the owner’s favorite vehicle to drive, Matt and the rest of the Rebel Off Road crew now have another satisfied and loyal customer – the result of their exceptional customer service and willingness to go above and beyond with their builds.
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