When I got my 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon, one of the first things I wanted to upgrade was the front bumper.
The stock front bumper wasn’t much to look at, but more importantly, it wasn’t something that was equipped for off-road and overlanding use.
I needed a heavy-duty bumper that could accommodate a winch, lights, and other accessories. And as I was shopping for a new bumper, I found myself drawn to the Rebel Off Road Summit. From an aesthetic standpoint and a functionality standpoint, the Summit bumper is just what the doctor ordered.
In this Rebel Off Road Summit bumper review, I’ll get into the specs, features, pros, cons, and other details you need to decide if it’s the right bumper for you.
Rebel Off Road Summit Bumper Specs and Features
First things first, let’s review some of the essential specs of this bumper:
- Robotically welded from .188 Mild Steel and laser cut and press brake formed from 3/16″-thick USA steel
- 14-bolt mounting system and heavy-duty hardware for superb strength
- Compact design that accommodates 40-inch tires (and larger, if needed)
- Fits tightly against the frame to maintain a good approach angle
- Integrated heavy-duty winch tray
- Recessed winch mount that offers improved airflow, better cooling, and a lower center of gravity
- Extra heavy-duty 1-inch thick recovery shackle tabs
- 3.25″ square fog light cut outs
So, it’s obvious after reading the spec sheet that Rebel Off Road Summit bumper is built like a tank. And that’s a good thing – it’s intended for off-road and overlanding use and abuse, so it provides you with long-lasting durability and functionality.
Let’s take a closer look at some of these specs and features.
Summit Bumper Build Quality and Design
The proof is in the pudding with this thing…
Weighing in at 133 pounds, this steel bumper isn’t messing around. It has taken every bit of abuse I’ve thrown at it over the last nine months or so and performed perfectly in situations ranging from the desert to snowy mountaintops.
These bumpers are powder coated and sandblasted. They’re then pre-treated with a 4-stage iron phosphate wash and a de-ionized water rinse.
After that, the Rebel Off Road Summit bumper gets a Tier 1 OEM Supplier base coast of zinc-rich primer. The final step is a top coat of black powder coat finish (although you can order the bumper raw and customize the finish yourself).
When I laid eyes on this thing for the first time, I could immediately tell that it was a well-designed, well-put-together piece of engineering. That’s often the case with high-quality products – the impression of quality work is immediate.
Rebel Off Road Summit Bumper design speaks to its build quality as well.
For starters, I appreciate that the bumper is so compact. Now, don’t think that because it’s compact that it’s somehow not a rock-solid barrier to protect the front end of my Jeep. Quite the contrary!
Rebel Off Road has crammed all sorts of performance into a compact package that makes it an ideal option for off-roading. The launch angle of my Jeep is maintained while also benefiting from the protection the bumper provides. I run 35-inch tires, but if I ever wanted to get really wild and put 40s on my Jeep the bumper would allow for it (even if the wheel wells don’t!).
Additionally, I opted for the bumper with hoop and skid plate, so I get even more protection for my truck.
The way Rebel Off Road recessed the winch mount is a genius bit of design too. Not only does this allow for improved airflow and cooling, but it also keeps the center of gravity lower, which anyone that rides off-road trails can appreciate.
Rebel Off Road Summit Bumper Installation
As noted earlier, this bumper comes with a 14-bolt mounting system and heavy-duty hardware that results in superior strength. Sometimes heavy-duty accessories can be a bear to install, but that’s not the case with this bumper.
All the hardware you need to install the bumper comes right in the box. And since it’s a bolt-on design, there’s no cutting or modifications to be made. Rebel Off Road worked diligently to develop a bumper that is easy to install whether you do it yourself at home or have a 4WD shop do it for you.
Additionally, Rebel Off Road simplified the process of installing a winch – you can drop the winch in after the bumper has been installed.
This is a Godsend because you don’t have to take the bumper off to install the winch. Not only does this save you installation time, but it also saves you money if you take your rig to the shop to have these items installed.
I have a Warn 89611 ZEON 10-S Winch with Synthetic Rope installed on this bumper and the install couldn’t have gone more smoothly. Kudos to Rebel Off Road for designing an easy-to-work-with bumper.
Accessories on My Summit Bumper
In addition to the Warn ZEON winch, I’ve added a few other accessories that have made the Rebel Off Road Summit Bumper a highly functional addition to my Jeep:
- Two KC Gravity LED G34 fog lights for low-level lighting when driving in rain, snow, and fog
- GearAmerica Mega Shackles that boast a 68,000-pound capacity
- Factor 55 UltraHook that can be used as a conventional hook opening or as a shackle mount
- Warn 1.5-inch Epic Hawse Fairlead that has a large radius opening that reduces wear
Now, obviously the Rebel Off Road Summit bumper is far heavier than the stock bumper (133 pounds versus 31 pounds) but when you add the winch (80 pounds), the shackles (6 pounds), the hook, fairlead, and lights, this setup tips the scales at more than 220 pounds.
When I installed all this, I wasn’t quite ready to install the lift kit on the truck. But all the weight caused the front end of the truck to sag. So, I installed a 1.5-inch TeraFlex leveling kit to bring the front end of the truck back up to level. Just bear in mind that you’ll need a leveling kit or a full lift kit if you install this bumper on your rig.
Rebel Off Road Summit Bumper Pros and Cons
As I’ve explained above, there are a huge number of pros associated with the Rebel Off Road bumper.
Not only is the build quality off the charts, but the design is smart and makes your life easier when it comes time to add accessories to the bumper.
Rebel Off Road bumper compact design is appreciable and easy to install too. It also looks beefy and aggressive – just what I wanted! And the price, while higher than some off-roading bumpers, is well worth the features that you get in return.
In terms of cons, I’m struggling to come up with anything. It weighs a lot, but what do you expect with a steel bumper?!
At the end of the day, the Rebel Off Road Summit bumper is everything I need and nothing I don’t. It’s been a great addition to my rig and has more than proven its worth. I’m sure it will continue to do so on my future off-roading and overlanding adventures.