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Fab Fours Jeep JKs As Much Go As Show

Posted in Features on November 3, 2015
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When it comes to off-road enthusiasts, Jeepers are some of the most passionate. With a company so rooted in American history and culture, people are often quick to defend or put-down the iconic brand. Case-and-point, the Fab Fours Legend Wranglers. Fab Fours is an American manufacturing company that specializes in bumpers, body armor, and accessories for a wide variety of Jeep and truck platforms. Like many companies often do, it was looking for a way to make a big splash among a sea of JKs.

With the JK platform having been modified in so many ways since it’s unveil in 2007, the company knew it would be no easy task to stand out. However, Fab Fours managed to do just that with the creation of what it simply calls the Legend. Starting out as a ‘14 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, the company wasted no time with the radical transformation of the JK. While it does have a pair of heavy duty Dynatrac ProRock 80 axles, what makes the Legend stand out from the pack is its over-the-top fenders, 50-inch-tall tires, and chopped roof.

The low stance and vibrant red-tinted windows add to the flare, and admittedly, to the confusion whether this Jeep is all for show. Sure, it’s been ‘wheeled a few times, and occasionally gets driven around the company’s South Carolina headquarters, but the majority of the Legend’s life has been spent touring the show circuit. Given that Fab Fours owner Greg Higgs is a die-hard ‘wheeler, he hated the stigma that the Legend was just for show. So much so, he built another as a proof of concept.

Take Two
This second Legend is called the Legend 2.Woah. It’s equally as over the top, but this show Jeep is actually built to ‘wheel. In fact, we’ve seen 2.Woah in action, and can attest to the fact that it works great in the dirt. To get a better look at both of the Legend JKs up close, we spent some time crawling under the rigs at Motor Trenz in Matthews, North Carolina. It was here that the rigs were getting their last minute prep before they shipped off to the 2015 SEMA show.

Both Legends received Dynatrac ProRock 80 front axles, each axle stuffed with a 35-spline Detroit Locker and RCV Performance axleshafts. Placing the front axle 10 inches forward of its original location didn’t leave any room for a traditional steering configuration. Fab Fours overcame this issue by building a custom axle truss to secure the PSC Motorsports double-ended hydraulic steering ram. You’ll also notice that both track bars now mount from the opposite side of the factory position.
The original Legend (red control arms) was built using an elaborate steel-plated radius arm design. As the company used the original Legend a bit more off-road, it learned that the radius arms were binding, manifesting in the form of some broken welds. To ensure this didn’t happen on the Legend 2, the upper control arms were separated from the lowers. While this setup is far from conventional, it is does have some off-the-shelf components, such as the Currie Johnny Joints.
Out back, the rear axle was pushed back 10 inches as well, giving the Jeep an overall wheelbase of 136 inches. The stock frame-side control-arm mounts hold custom Ironman 4x4 Fab 7075 T6 aluminum control arms. Both Legends still retain the stock fuel tank and coil-spring mounting locations at the frame. Getting power to the axles are a set of 1350-equipped drivelines from Tom Woods.
A noticeable change from the original build to 2.Woah can be seen with the rear axle truss. While each Wrangler received rear Dynatrac ProRock 80 with 40-spline shafts and ARB Air Lockers, the bracing and bracket configuration on 2.Woah is significantly more elaborate. The 2.Woah setup also was fit with 1.5-inch TeraFlex rear coil springs, which work with Fox 2.0 shocks and air bumps.
Another change from the original setup was a move to Fox 2.0 reservoir shocks up front and Skyjacker six-inch-lift JK coil springs. Overall, both the rigs have a fairly limited amount of suspension travel, but the tremendous width (nearly 104 inches wide!) and massive 46-inch Baja Claws more than make up for it.
The 6.2L GM LS3 crate engine is by far the most major upgrade from the original Legend. The powerful V-8 has had a little work done to it to push it up to 480 horsepower. Handling that power is a Mercedes AW580 automatic transmission, which is backed up by a NVG 241 T-case.
One of the most talked about features on the Legend was what Fab Fours calls its Grumper. The all-steel grille/winch bumper combo is actually up for serious consideration as a new addition to the company’s JK catalog. Some subtle changes were made to the Grumper on 2.Woah to allow for tire clearance.
The Fab Four custom steel fenders are over-the-top in every way. On 2.Woah, the size was reduced a bit to increase visibility and make room for the tires to cycle. Both JK’s have Smittybilt JK hardtops that were chopped down four inches. Because 2.Woah was built for ‘wheeling, a set of Mopar half-doors were installed. The brushed stainless steel finish on Legend 1 is an extremely well executed wrap installed by Motor Trenz.
The red window tint on the Legend is equally as hard to see out of as it is to see in. Remember, this one is a show Jeep, so it’s going to have modifications that don’t make any sense for a real ‘wheeling machine. If you look closely, you’ll see Jay Leno’s autograph on the dash. This is from its appearance on the big-chinned funny man’s new car show.
We can’t talk about the 2.Woah without mentioning the Mohawk. It serves no practical purpose other than to get your attention, and that it absolutely does.

In The Dirt
We often joke that we are allergic to show-and-shine Jeeps, and that’s why you don’t see many in the pages of this JP Magazine. Fab Fours owner and CEO Greg Higgs was eager to show us that 2.Woah was built to wheel. For this, we spent an afternoon at one of our favorite Southeastern ‘wheeling locals, the Flats Offroad Park in Marion, North Carolina. Despite the look-at-me green of the Legend 2.Woah, it works very well off-road. The wide stance, low lift, and 20 inches of extra wheelbase make this thing an extremely stable climber. We’re thinking a set of beadlocks would help get a little more performance out of the 46-inch Mickey Thompson Baja Claws, but this JK is definitely more than your average show Jeep.

Living Legends
After spending time crawling around each rig, we can say that each has some out-of-the-box design elements that we liked. For a JK, there’s no doubt these stand out in a crowd. In terms of a company brand, it sends a message of innovation, which is always a good thing. The Legend 2.Woah was a smart move because it proves out a show vehicle concept without destroying the original show vehicle. There’s plenty of talk about much of what you see here going into production, but only time will tell. Ultimately, both of these JKs manage to generate a lot of conversation and will likely continue to do so.

Hard Facts
Legend
Vehicle: ’14 Wrangler Unlimited
Engine: 3.6L V-6
Transmission: A580
Transfer Case: NVG241
Axles: Dynatrac ProRock 60 front w/RCV axleshafts and Detroit Locker/Dynatrac ProRock 80 rear w/40-spline ARB Air Locker, 5.38 gears
Wheels: 24x12 American Force
Tires: 50-in agricultural
Built For: Show

Legend 2.Woah
Vehicle: ’14 Wrangler Unlimited
Engine: 6.2L GM V-8
Transmission: Mercedes AW580
Transfer Case: NVG241
Axles: Dynatrac ProRock 60 front w/RCV axleshafts and Detroit Locker/Dynatrac ProRock 80 rear w/40-spline ARB Air Locker, 5.38 gears
Wheels: 20x14 American Force
Tires: 46x19.50R20 Mickey Thompson Baja Claw
Built For: Show and Go

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