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All around the world, there’s only one brand that remains completely synonymous with off-roading: Jeep. While all are built to tackle whatever lies in the road ahead, there’s no Jeep quite so equipped to tackle the most rugged off-roading experiences as the Jeep Rubicon. The origin story of where the Jeep Rubicon gets its name is just as unique as the Rubicon itself. Find out more about the Jeep Rubicon and learn what Rubicon stands for below. 

Rubicon is synonymous with off-road power 

A Jeep Rubicon climbing on a constructed rock in front of a Rubicon sign.
Jeep Rubicon | Scott Olsen via Getty Images

In the times of the Romans, the Rubicon served as a small river that marked the official border between Italy and Cisalpine Gaul. The Cisalpine Gaul was a region south of the Alps which was ruled by Julius Caesar. In accordance with Roman law, any provincial governor who led troops across the border back into Italy established themselves as public enemy number one. Crossing the Rubicon meant declaring war. 

Based on its origin, the expression “Crossing the Rubicon” came to mean doing something that implies there is no turning back. Interestingly, the roots behind the name of Jeep Rubicon aren’t directly connected to the Romans as the connection lies a little closer to home. According to Jeep, the name for the Rubicon brand actually traces its roots back to California.

What does Rubicon stand for? 

In the 1800s, a river in California was named Rubicon after the Rubicon river in Italy. Shortly after, a road was built that crossed the Rubicon river and connected the towns of Georgetown and Lake Tahoe. This road was also given the name Rubicon. The Rubicon road connected two hotel complexes, Wentworth Springs and Rubicon Springs. Eventually, both locations were closed, and the Rubicon road was completely abandoned. 

In the 1950s, off-roaders began to rediscover the Rubicon road. Soon, the nearby town of Georgetown decided to organize a Jeep tour from Georgetown to Lake Tahoe via the Rubicon Trail. In August 1953, the event came to life as 55 jeeps and over 150 participants took off on a 22-mile route through the Sierra Nevada across the Rubicon Trail which contains some of the toughest yet most beautiful off-roading experiences. The event was officially called the “Jeepers Jamboree.” This unique off-roading experience along the Rubicon trail is now held annually on the last weekend of July. 

Take a look at the three Rubicon trims offered by Jeep 

The Rubicon has a long history in the Jeep lineup as it’s a badge that marks the most rugged off-road power. In 2023, Jeep offers three Rubicon trims. Two Rubicon trims are offered on the Wrangler, and the other is offered as a trim on the Gladiator. In both instances, the Rubicon trims happen to be the models offering the most off-road capabilities. 

When it comes to Jeep Wrangler, Jeep reports that the MSRP of a base-level 2023 Wrangler is $31,195. With the Wrangler comes the choice of two upgraded Rubicon trim levels. Jeep reports that the 2023 Wrangler 4-door Rubicon 4×4 has a starting MSRP of $47,495. In comparison, the 2023 Wrangler 4-door Rubicon 392 has a starting MSRP of $82,495. 

According to Jeep, the MSRP of a 2023 pickup-style Jeep Gladiator is $38,775. In comparison, the upgraded trim level of the 2023 Gladiator Rubicon 4×4 has an MSRP of $51,490. While the Rubicon trims are a bit pricier, with the extra cash comes the legendary off-roading capabilities of Rubicon.


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