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Spyder Sense - 2012 Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited Rubicon

Posted in Features on July 1, 2012
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Hardcore builds are fun, but sometimes there's no need to use dynamite to swat a fly. Poison Spyder's latest JK shares the hardcore heritage of other Spyder builds, but does so in a package that calls on ready-made products from Poison Spyder and other industry luminaries.

"We wanted to do a build that was more like what the average JK owner would do," Poison Spyder's Larry McRae said. "The last JK we did was aimed at hardcore rock crawling, with parts like Dana 60 axles and an Atlas II transfer case. Those are awesome parts and there are definitely JK owners, including us, who push their vehicles hard, but we're aiming at the middle of the road this time."

Thirty-seven-inch BFG Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires mounted to 18-inch Trailready beadlocks work great in a variety of trail conditions. The Crusher flares look like steel, but they’re part of the growing line of aluminum body armor from Poison Spyder. If you’re constantly rubbing rocks, Poison Spyder still recommends steel body armor, but if you’re trying to save vehicle weight and still have a trail-armored rig, aluminum is the way to go.

The Dozer Orange 2012 JK Rubicon Unlimited on these pages might best be characterized as a "triple purpose" machine. First, it's got Jeep's new 2012 drive train, and serves as a rolling development lab for Poison Spyder's latest JK products. Second, Cheri McRae needed a new daily driver. Finally, this JK will see action on trails and at 4x4 shows and events all over the country.

Once home from the dealer, the trip from stock to stunning took a mere two months, thanks to the Poison Spyder shop crew and a smart selection of JK-specific parts. R&D was involved, but one-off custom parts were not. Cheri admits she thought the color was too "school bus-y" at first. Not anymore. With the Spyder parts from stem to stern, the Rock Krawler/Fox suspension, a set of 37-inch BFG Mud Terrain KM2s, and custom graphics to tie it all together, this Dozer Orange JK grabs and holds your attention for all the right reasons. This Poison Spyder Jeep is, quite appropriately, called "Venomous."

Of course, when Poison Spyder aims for the middle of the road, you've got to consider the source and remember Poison Spyder's heritage in hardcore. This JK might not have Dana 60s, an Atlas II, or custom fabrication, but 37s and a smart selection of ready-made parts are still going to take this JK over trails that lesser vehicles fear to tread. "Middle of the hardcore road" seems like a more accurate characterization.

The Crusher corners are made from 1/8-inch steel and are formed along the compound curves of the JK’s body lines.

This may have been a quick build, but it produced a capable JK that will go the distance. It makes perfect Spyder sense to us.

Vehicle: 2012 Jeep JK Unlimited Rubicon
Owner/Hometown: Cheri McRae/Banning, California
Engine: 3.6L Pentastar V-6
Transmission: new-generation give-speed automatic (note: this transmission plays a major role int he 2012 JK's newfound acceleration, as parasitic power loss is much less compared to the old automatic.)
Transfer case/low range ratio: NVG2410R Rock-Trac/4:1
Front end: OEM Dana 44
Rear end: OEM Dana 44
Ring and Pinion: 3.73:1
Front Differential: OEM Tru-Lok
Rear Differential: OEM Tru-Lok
Suspension: Rock Krawler X-Factor long-arm front and rear systems with 2.5-inch lift coils and Fox Shox Performance Series 2.0 shocks
Tires: 37x12.50R18 BFG Mud-Terrain T/A KM2
Wheels: 18-inch TrailReady HD-series beadlocks

All corners of Cheri’s Venomous JK are well-protected, thanks to a pair of aluminum rear Crusher flares and rear Crusher corners.
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