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Lucas’s 1996 Grand Cherokee Make-A-Wish® Build

Fulfilling a Wish With Mods

A first generation (ZJ) Jeep Grand Cherokee build was a bit of a stretch for the team at ExtremeTerrain, a well-known Wrangler authority, however, when Make-A-Wish® is involved, they get to work and Make-It-Happen. Eighteen-year-old Lucas from, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, relinquished his 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee to ExtremeTerrain for a much-needed overhaul. With a slim dead-line before the reveal date at sister store, AmericanMuscle’s, 9th annual Mustang Show, a tremendous amount of work needed to be completed before giving the ZJ back to Lucas.


Step 1 - Putting the Pieces Together

Following some body work, the crew over at Malvern Collision slathered the Grand Cherokee’s sheet metal in a custom Cobalt Blue hue before tackling some maintenance items. Valve cover, oil pan, as well as various essential engine gaskets, were replaced in an effort to keep the inline-six running strong and smooth for years to come. To prepare for the soon-to-be-mounted 33” Mickey Thompson Baja ATZP3 tires, the Jeep’s differentials were sent out for re-gearing before addressing the interior. Lucas’ blue and black color scheme request was carried through the entire build to the interior of his ZJ. The ExtremeTerrain team ditched the original and worn, beige interior in favor for a beautiful new black interior, from headliner to carpet, accented with custom blue stitching. Next came illumination upgrades, with the replacement of the factory head and tail lamps in favor of new Spyder Euro units. Raxiom Single Row 50” lightbar and 3” square LED light cubes along with blue Vision X Tantrum LED Rock Lights and Baja Designs Squadron Sport Flush Mount LED lighting were affixed for additional brilliance. Moving onto the exterior, an ARB winching front bumper, Rock Hard 4x4 Patriot Series rear bumper, rock sliders and Barricade roof rack basket complement the Rough Country 4” Lift Kit. Rugged Ridge’s All Terrain Fender Flare Kit assist in keeping the massive 33” Mickey Thompsons, mounted on Mammoth 8 Black Steel Wheels, from protruding from the ZJ’s body, therefore, keeping it street legal for Pennsylvania stringent vehicle inspection standards. Finally, the underside was wrapped up by way of a Flowmaster Catback Exhaust for some increased rumble and exhalation.

Step 2 - Revealing the Completed Build

After applying some window tint and installing the new stereo system, final touches were made in preparation for the grand Make-A-Wish® reveal. Lucas’ Grand Cherokee was kept under a cover at ExtremeTerrain’s booth at the AmericanMuscle 9th Annual Mustang Show at Maple Grove Raceway. When it came time to pull the cover off, Lucas speechless in delight as he observed the hard work and long hours put into his revitalized ride courtesy of the staff at ExtremeTerrain. The team at ExtremeTerrain and Turn5 couldn’t be any happier to present Lucas with his reconditioned ride as we wish him all the best!

Mod List


  • Exterior & Custom

  • Body Repair & Custom Blue Paint
  • Black Line-X by Malvern Collision
  • Rugged Ridge All Terrain Fender Flare Kit
  • Steel Front and Rear Bumpers
  • Rock Sliders
  • Barricade Roof Rack Basket for Spare Tire
  • Performance

  • Flowmaster Cat-Back Exhaust
  • Lighting

  • 50” LED Light Bar and 3” Square LED Light Cubes
  • Blue Rock Lights
  • Smoked Headlights and Tail Lights
  • Audio & Interior

  • Custom Black Leather Seats with Blue Stitching by M&A Custom Upholstery
  • New Radio
  • Suspension

  • Rough Country 4” Lift Kit/li>
  • Wheels & Tires

  • Mammoth 8 Black Steel Wheel
  • 33” Mickey Thompson Baja ATZP3 Tires