Jeep has continued its ever-popular JK model, and new owners who are interested in stepping up in off-road capability are looking to add suspension lifts and taller tires. American Expedition Vehicles (AEV) has a number of suspension options for JK owners based on the desired ride height and application.
AEV’s 2.5-inch JK DualSport XT suspension was chosen for this 2012 Jeep Rubicon. This kit offers a mild increase in height to fit up to a 35-inch tire, while keeping overall height reasonable and maintaining excellent highway manners. AEV designs their kits using progressive-rate coil springs and custom-tuned Bilstein shocks specifically valved for the application. Significant effort goes into their designs to provide increased off-road capability, while trying best to maintain a comfortable and stable highway ride, as well. The kits come complete with all the additional hardware needed to install the lift. No exhaust modifications are required and no special tools are needed for the installation.
We followed along as the crew at Adventure Trailers in Prescott, Arizona, performed the suspension swap. Adventure Trailers is known for their top-tier expedition/camping trailers and their custom expedition vehicle preparation work.
In about half a day, this 2012 JK went from stock suspension to being even more backcountry-ready for exploring trails. With the lift complete, we left the shop and headed down the highway to a nearby forest trail. The street ride was supple but stable, with the new coils and gas-charged Bilsteins. The Jeep cornered great. The suspension kept the tires well planted on washboard dirt, and the rising rate springs kept the Jeep ride smooth without bottoming when we hit bigger bumps. There was a definite improvement in both high-speed dirt handling and the ability of the Jeep to traverse comfortably over rougher terrain.