You’re a buyer with a substantial bank account, and a desire to go on some serious trail runs who is looking for a new car. What should you buy? The boring answer is Wrangler Rubicon, but you want something that says “Trophy Truck” not “vintage military tractor.” You want something like the Raptor.
But what if you don’t want a Raptor?
On paper it’s not really a Raptor-fighter. That title goes to the Ram 2500 Power Wagon. That being said, between the three, I’d have the Rebel. Let me explain.
With the Raptor, you get a 3.5L Ecoboost, some serious suspension travel, and fender flares straight from the gods. In the Rebel, you get powder coating and skid-plates, air shocks, and not much else. It’s a clean slate, which is what I like the most about it.
Not to mention you can get the 5.7L Hemi V8 in the Rebel. I’m a sucker for V8s. If you want more power, you can buy hundreds of aftermarket cams, rockers, headers, and more for the Hemi. Aftermarket support for the Ecoboost is comparatively non-existent.
Now the Ecoboost is already prepped and ready, and I get that. It may be faster and more capable out of the box, but it’s the truck decided to give me, not the truck I want.
Again, the Rebel is a clean slate. I can modify the living daylights out of this truck to create anything I want. If I wanted an awesome muscle truck, I could buy the 2WD 5.7L Rebel. If I wanted to have a bit less power, but slay the outdoors, I could buy the 3.6L V6 with 4WD. So many choices to start with. In the end it will cost a lot more to build a perfect Rebel than to buy a Raptor.
But perfection never comes cheap.
And finally, The Rebel is still a real truck. FCA didn’t sacrifice the capability of the RAM 1500 we know for the sake of performance. In fact, they improved it. The Rebel has a 300 lbs payload advantage over the Ford, and 2,000 lbs greater towing capacity. It comes with little toolboxes in the rear fenders. It’s a real truck that can be used for real truck things.
Oh, and those air shocks? Fully adjustable. Sign me up.