3.8L Rubicon vs. 3.6L Sport? - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 11:58 AM Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1
Feedback: 0 reviews
3.8L Rubicon vs. 3.6L Sport?

Hey JK owners, Looking for advice/opinions here. I'm in my second TJ in 13 years. The family has grown and it's time to upgrade to something bigger. This would be my 3rd wrangler.I've been looking to upgrade to a 4 door. My jeep sees daily freeway driving and weekend wheeling here in UT. Whichever way I go, the jeep will be lifeted and run 35"s. My budget is such that I can't drop cash for a new rubicon. So I've been looking at some different options. One route is go buy a nearly new 4 Door Sport with the 3.6L engine. Or I could buy a 5 year old Rubicon with the 3.8L engine. For me it comes down to a trade off. Rubicon features or a the newer more powerful engine?

I know there are advocates for both sides and I'm sure there have been wars waged in the forums over this. Those of you with older Rubicons, would you give those features up for the better engine? Those of you in Sports with the 3.6L—are you happy with that engine? Anyone had the privilidge to own both? Which was better. What way would you go?

Any friendly advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
Jermovia is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 12:24 PM
Granite Guru
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Age: 30
Posts: 422
Feedback: 0 reviews

I have a JKU sport with the 3.6. I would not give up that power for the older rubicon. I find a base wrangler to be capable and 95% of the time its on road.

I drove from Homer, AK through Canada all the way to San Diego, CA. I wanted more power the entire road trip and was waiting for Magnuson Magnacharger to come out with a kit.

Well just got the dyno sheet from Garret at Magnacharger. It makes a lot more power. And I have 3.73 and stock 225/75R16's. I have a rear LSD with the tow package. I love my setup. Haven't driven it with the supercharger yet.
The_Punisher is offline  
post #3 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 12:28 PM
JKO Addict!
 
Abacabb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Fishersville, VA
Posts: 2,261
Feedback: 1 reviews

3.6 > 3.8

I've owned a 2007 Sahara on 35s, 2008 Rubicon Unlimited on 37s and now a 2013 Sport on 40s.


2012 Jeep Wrangler - Gecko
3.5" Rock Krawler X Factor
40x13.5 Nitto Mud Grapplers / 17" Fuel Hostage
Poison Spyder Brawler Lite / Poison Spyder Rocker Knockers
Poison Spyder RockBrawler w/ Tire Carrier



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



Quote:
Originally Posted by 2k2wranglerx View Post
and yet... canada still sucks worse

we'd make fun of your prime minister if we could... unfortunately nobody's ever heard of him!

Last edited by Abacabb; 01-30-2014 at 12:30 PM.
Abacabb is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 01:33 PM
Wheeler
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 66
Feedback: 0 reviews

Definitely go with the newer motor. You can always add lockers, etc to the sport. And it would be a lot cheaper than a engine swap once you get to enjoy the suck of the 3.8.
10Seconds is offline  
post #5 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 02:16 PM
A JKO DICK
 
ASSFROW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Mt. Airy, MD
Age: 49
Posts: 3,677
Garage
Feedback: 1 reviews

What they all said ^^^^^^^^^^. You can always swap axles and even if you did a V8 swap with a Rubi, you'd probably replace the axles anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Sams Misguided Child View Post
What is wrong with stupid people? Never mind
Quote:
Originally Posted by StubEXrube View Post
If I'm gonna kiss a man, I want it to be hard and rough... not gay!
ASSFROW is offline  
post #6 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 03:25 PM
Rock God
 
HeloJeff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 871
Feedback: 1 reviews

What would be more expensive the axle and transfer case upgrades to be equal or better then a rubicon or a supercharger for the 3.8?


Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
HeloJeff is offline  
post #7 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 03:38 PM
Granite Guru
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Age: 30
Posts: 422
Feedback: 0 reviews

The 3.6 is 90 lbs lighter than the 3.8. The supercharger that was just installed on my 3.6 is only 80 lbs. So its still lighter, and makes 306 rwhp and 276 lb ft of tq. After 2000 rpm tq is up to 255 ish and never drops below that all the way to redline!!

To me, thats way better than a hemi/V8 swap do to ease of install and power output.

I know you're not talking about supercharging the 3.6, but its just way better in every way haha. If it was ever in your future to be able to throw a blower on it, still get the 3.6!

I just think its a wonderful powerplant and have beat on it and have had zero issues and it makes good power. I'm going to throw a $230 aussie locker in the front and already have a LSD rear. Thats what I sugget, find a 2012 or newer sport with a LSD in the rear.
The_Punisher is offline  
post #8 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 03:50 PM
A JKO DICK
 
ASSFROW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Mt. Airy, MD
Age: 49
Posts: 3,677
Garage
Feedback: 1 reviews

It depends on what axle and what you might be able to find at the time, but I would prefer to choose my axles and have the 3.6. You can find rubi transfer cases for about $500-$600 + trade yours to people doing LS swaps. I know people supercharge the 3.8's but I would always worry it would go boom.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Sams Misguided Child View Post
What is wrong with stupid people? Never mind
Quote:
Originally Posted by StubEXrube View Post
If I'm gonna kiss a man, I want it to be hard and rough... not gay!
ASSFROW is offline  
post #9 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 04:30 PM
JKowners Vendor
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Wellington Nv.
Posts: 1,138
Feedback: 2 reviews

3.8 then drop a LS in it....

Dealer for: MoTech, Atlas, Dynatrac, Rock Krawler, ORO, Currie, Poison Spyder, Bilstein, Fox, SWAY-A-WAY, Ridid, Adams and Tom Woods DS's. And much more!


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
CT Performance, Inc is offline  
post #10 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 04:54 PM
Rock God
 
ronjenx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Maine
Posts: 1,872
Feedback: 0 reviews

I'm not having any issues with the 3.8L engine, so it's not worth it for me to change to the 3.6L engine.

However, if I didn't have a JK, and was in a position to choose, I would go with the 3.6L engine.

2008 Unlimited Rubicon Automatic
ronjenx is offline  
post #11 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 05:10 PM
Granite Guru
 
membrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: DFW Area
Posts: 194
Feedback: 0 reviews

New versus used?
Depends on where you can find a price-worthy used one, but from what I've seen, a new (less than Rubicon) JKU for the same price as a used Rubicon gives you more options for the price.

Example: I went to wheel and deal on a used Rubicon at the dealer I've been buying from for the last 13 years, and they wanted $28000 for a 2010 JKUR (35000 miles) and wouldn't budge on the price. I went across the lot to the new car dealer and we priced a JKU Sport with half-doors, soft top for the same amount. I then through my Treadlightly and military discounts at them and we drove away in a new JKU Sport for $23000.

...I'm just sayin...

2010 Red Unlimited Rubicon 6 speed - Traded!

2014 Red Unlimited Rubicon X 6 speed - starting over!
membrain is offline  
post #12 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 06:15 PM
Wheeler
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: DFW
Posts: 52
Feedback: 0 reviews

Get a stripped 2014 sport brand new, warranty, etc.....save up, do 5.13's, Detroits, and 35's and have fun.....will be same low range as the rubi, better motor, lighter, better gear ratio on the road, same off-road....

2015 2dr Rubi, manual shift, windows, and door locks, love this thing
Par Fore is offline  
post #13 of 17 Old 01-30-2014, 08:01 PM
Wheeler
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Somewhere Out There
Age: 63
Posts: 77
Feedback: 0 reviews

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronjenx View Post
I'm not having any issues with the 3.8L engine, so it's not worth it for me to change to the 3.6L engine.

However, if I didn't have a JK, and was in a position to choose, I would go with the 3.6L engine.
I feel the same way. After owning 6 Jeeps since 1986, I am happy with the 3.8.

I do miss the old 4.0 L. Great motor.
Macman1138 is offline  
post #14 of 17 Old 01-31-2014, 11:37 AM
Wheeler
 
ATX_JKU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Leander, TX
Age: 35
Posts: 86
Feedback: 0 reviews

The 3.6 is the way to go.......
ATX_JKU is offline  
post #15 of 17 Old 01-31-2014, 12:00 PM
Granite Guru
 
k1973's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 176
Feedback: 0 reviews

I debated used vs new. But the price I was finding on used 3.8L was not much less than a new 3.6L. So I opted for a new 2dr 3.6L Sport. I quickly dropped in D60's front/rear, and then swapped in a Rubi T-case. Just those mods alone and I'm sitting below what my roommate paid for his 4dr 3.6L Rubicon. But I have a much stronger JK than he does, so I'm more than happy.

My vote is go with the 3.6L Sport, and when time and budget permit, drop in whatever axles you want.

As for gears... I went with 4.88 with 37" BFG KM2's. Great combo as I daily drive mine. Perfect for highway driving and I can run 80mph with no issues. And the 4:1 t-case is great for offroad. I had several people trying to convince me to go with 5.13, but so glad I didn't.

My Rides
2019 GMC Denali HD -- 2013 JK 2dr -- 2010 KTM SMT -- 2007 Triumph Speed Triple

JK Builds

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
--
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
--
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
k1973 is offline  
post #16 of 17 Old 01-31-2014, 01:55 PM
Rock God
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 525
Feedback: 0 reviews

I've owned two JKs with a 3.8, two JKs with a 3.6, and now one JK with a 6.4. I'm betting the 6.4 wouldn't work for your budget. Of the other two choices, I would take a JK of any kind with a 3.6 over any JK with a 3.8. The 3.8 is painfully slow, and isn't even a fun vehicle to own. The 3.6 is pretty decent.

2017 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Recon; 35s - no lift, Warn 9.5 XP-S, ARB Twin Air, SPOD
2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk (wife's Jeep)
2016 Ram Laramie 3500 Megacab 4x4; 6.7 CTD, Aisen, AEV Prospector conversion; 37s, 4.10s, Warn 16.5K
MOPWR2U is offline  
post #17 of 17 Old 01-31-2014, 02:18 PM
Granite Guru
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Rockford IL
Age: 39
Posts: 148
Feedback: 0 reviews

I have a 07 JKRU with an auto, and I feel this is the problem more than the 3.8 is the worst engine. The transmission just isn't geared for the engines power band. I ran 4.10 gears with 35's and it was ok, and now have 37's with 5.13. I love the rubicon for out of the box capability. All I did was put tires on it, and I can go just about anywhere highly modded TJ's and CJ go.

It all comes down to price, and I got a smoking deal on my JKRU, so buying new didn't make sense.
neil.cross is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome