22 September 2022

Overland-ready: 2015 Jeep JKU Sahara (106,400 km) for sale

Throw in your camping stuff and hit the road – overland life is as simple as that.

This overland rig comes with everything needed - from mechanical upgrades to recovery and first aid kits - for someone to immediately venture out to remote locations in all conditions.

While the rig does not have the flex of a Rubicon, this truck has with ease handled everything I have ever encountered during my overland travels. For example, here's a short video clip of a washout in the Sawtooth Mountains (Idaho).

Antelope Pass washoutWhen I was on the Trans=America Trail east to west in May/June 2017, I encountered a lot of snow and numerous closed passes (one Oregon pass was still blocked by snow in mid-June). The entire Sawtooth range in Idaho ended up being closed (I came back in July on my TAT backwards trip and got through most areas closed on the trip west). I tried to get up Antelope Pass but it was hopelessly blocked higher up. It was warm with heavy snow melt and was raining heavily, so when I reversed my earlier course conditions were actually significantly worse only 90 minutes later. This clip was taken while coming down through the washout, 16 June 2017.

This JKU has been modified specifically for long-haul overland travel and comes fully equipped, right down to recovery kit.

  • Basics
    • Firecracker red exterior
    • 4-door JKU Sahara
    • 106,400 km
    • Hardtop with freedom panels (panels removable but hard top is not – roof rack anchored to interior roll bar)
    • Remote start
    • I am second owner - I bought it from Nanaimo Mercedes Benz dealer with very low mileage after someone decided they wanted a Mercedes sports coupe rather than a Jeep.
    • The slide show below shows current images shot on 22 September 2021
  • Price
    • CAD $54,000
    • Location: Parrsboro, Nova Scotia



  • Exterior and mechanical
    • Re-geared to 4.56 gear ratio for sustained uphill power in big mountains
    • 4” lift with heavy-duty Icon Vehicle Dynamics dual rated spring kit
    • 35” Mickey Thompson Baja ATZ P3 tires (good for about another 20,000 km) on 18” Rock Star rims (the 4.56 gearing is best-suited for 34-36” tire sizes)
    • JCR full-width front and rear steel bumpers (each has integrated lift points)
    • JCR heavy-duty swinging rear spare tire mount (with new 33” spare)
    • Skid plate
    • Warn winch (synthetic rope)
    • JW Speaker LED headlights (bright!)
    • Trailer hitch with rear-direction recovery insert
    • Chrome step-up bars on the side (came with original luxury package – I had intended to add JCR sliders but never got around to those, the only additional change I would make if I keep the truck)
    • Bug deflector
    • Chrome grill and light guards
    • AEV Procal (unit needed to adjust Jeep settings after re-gearing or changing tire size, and also to adjust other default settings such as low tire air pressure warnings)
    • Impeccably cared for - all maintenance records are available (rear brakes just done at 105,500 km); major gearing and lift work done by Fortec (https://fortec4x4.com/) in Roswell, Georgia.
    • Note: rear-window defrost is not operational. I have repaired this before but the extremely flimsy design (solder on the outside rear window) seems to break quickly on bumpy roads, so I decided to do without.
  • Interior
    • Sahara luxury package
    • Custom Katzkin leather seats
    • Truck vault in the rear with heavy-duty pull-out table (on a photo shoot I will carry a lot of valuable camera equipment, so it was crucial for me to have bombproof storage for valuables – Truck Vault units are often used by law enforcement to store firearms)
    • Heated seats and steering wheel
    • Canvas covers to protect rear seats
    • Vector Offroad front dock for phone and camera accessories, and Garmin InReach satellite receiver 
  • Front Runner Slimline roof rack system (anchored through hard-top to roll bar), including
    • Awning (I typically only mount this for extended summer trips)
    • Roof-mounted Hi-Lift jack
    • Integrated full-size (32x45") aluminum camp table (slides under roof rack)
    • Extra roof mount camp lights and bicycle rack (not mounted permanently)
    • Jerry can lockable mount with two EU standard jerry cans
  • Full recovery kit and long-haul roof storage accessories
    • MaxTrax recovery boards (2)
    • 3 Alu-Boxes: 2 medium (14x22x9”), 1 large (24x30x8“)
    • HD chain lengths (for recovery with Hi-Lift in backwards direction)
    • Craftsman 165-piece mechanics took kit
    • Collection of other emergency repair kit tools & tool bag
    • Viair 400P portable compressor
    • JeepsNeeds manifold for airing up and down (minutes to deflate 4 tires simultaneously; about 5-10 minutes to air-up all 4 tires)
    • Noco Genius battery booster
    • Fire extinguisher
    • Wilderness first aid kit (some meds with expiry dates will need replacement)
    • Pair of walkie-talkies
    • Tire repair kit
    • Tie-down straps and locks (one key for multiple locks)
    • Bigboy handsaw
    • Shackles (1 steel, 3 synthetic rope)
    • JeepsNeeds DLA (adaptor to anchor Hi-Lift jack to lift points)
    • Heavy-duty pulley
    • ARB tree strap, extension strap (1), and snatch straps (2)
    • Hi-Lift ground plate
    • JackMate (Hi-Lift accessory used for extraction in rear direction)

Below - some images from on the road

I have a 9-part series of blog entries about my 24-day traverse of rural USA on the Trans-America Trail - it includes some info on why I made the design choices I did for the current build. The first entry is here: https://tendrelimages.zenfolio.com/blog/2018/3/trans-america-trail-trip-report-part-1-north-carolina-to-western-tennessee

Jeep changesJeep changes

Coffee break on the White RimCoffee break on the White RimI'm always up for a brew and love brews with a view. Snack stop on the White Rim trail, Canyonlands, March 2019.

Winter overlandWinter overlandOut on the snowy roads, somewhere in Wyoming, during a December 2017 backroad crossing of the US, 20 December 2017. Desert campDesert campOut on BLM lands near Needles District, this was one of my favorite camping spots on my trip across the US. From the TAT, this is about a 30 mile diversion and definitely this area is worth a couple of days exploration. Also the Elephant Hill jeep trail is here - each time I've been through this area, I've been fully loaded for overland travel and have been hesitant to have all my stuff tossed around the truck. One of these trips...

Nova Scotia overlandNova Scotia overlandRocky beach stop on Cape Breton Island, 31 May 2019, while mapping out a NS overland trail.

On the trail near Buttle Lake, Vancouver IslandOn the trail near Buttle Lake, Vancouver IslandOn a backroad short-cut between Campbell River and Buttle Lake. This was taken while mapping out the Vancouver Island leg of my Canadian Crossing Overland Trail project, in August 2018.