It seems inevitable that the first stop anyone who buys a 2017 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Recon will make after leaving the dealership is a tire shop.
It's not because Jeep doesn't fit its latest special edition with decent tires from the factory—32-inch BFGoodrich Mud Terrains—it's because the automaker has tweaked its flagship off-roader so that it can fit even larger 35-inch rubber without any modifications.
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For Jeepers, that's especially notable. The Rubicon Recon is something of a final hurrah for the current generation Jeep Wrangler, since an all-new model is due to arrive for the 2018 model year. It's the most capable Jeep Wrangler the brand has ever offered from the factory and, frankly, it doesn't leave as much room for aftermarket improvement as a typical Wrangler does.
To build the Rubicon Recon, Jeep started with a standard Wrangler Rubicon and upgraded its front axle with tougher components to be able to withstand the extra drivetrain stress caused by heavy 35-inch tires. Jeep also trimmed the steel rails that protect its rocker panels over rough terrain in order to accommodate the 35-inch tires. Finally, taller springs netted a half inch suspension lift.
The Rubicon Recon rids on unique 17-inch dark grey alloy wheels and features black and red styling touches outside with red interior accents inside. Jeep will offer a choice of grey or color-coordinated fender flares as an option. The Rubicon Recon will be available in seven paint shades: Black, Bright White, Billet Silver, Firecracker Red, Gobi, Rhino and Granite Crystal.
At $40,140 for the two-door and $43,940 for the four-door Unlimited, the Rubicon Recon isn't exactly cheap—but it comes with a full warranty and is outfitted for just about any trail you might want to encounter, including the drive to the tire shop.
If you're in Chicago, the Rubicon Recon will be on display at the Chicago Auto Show through February 20, 2017.