By Alan McPhee, Daily News
And now for something entirely different. The “Trail Rated” badge on the side of every Jeep Wrangler 4×4 is a guarantee that it already meets the challenge of the Rubicon Trail, the legendary stagecoach route that climbs up over the Sierras from Georgetown, California to Lake Tahoe. It’s the Holy Grail for off-roaders and every year hundreds of them gather to take part in one of several Jeep Jamborees over the grueling 60 kilometre climb that takes two days to complete. It’s a test every Wrangler 4×4 must pass.
But, human nature being what it is, off-roaders are never entirely satisfied. For the past 60 years, ever since World War II veterans started using surplus army Jeeps for work and play, they have been tinkering with lift kits, power boosts, suspensions and locking axles. Despite the sophistication of today’s Jeeps, the “itch” to go a step further is never completely satisfied.