Review & Install Video
I'm Ryan from extremeterrain.com, and this is my review of the Smittybilt XRC Gen2 rear bumper fitting all 2007 to 2016 JKs. This bumper is for those of you who wanna swap out the factory rear bumper on your Jeep with an aftermarket one that provides a lot more protection, some additional features, and some additional styling to your Jeep. This bumper is packed full of all the features you would normally wanna see in a rear bumper, and it does it with a bit of a unique style. This thing definitely looks different than a lot of the other bumpers on the market. It will definitely go well with your XRC front bumper if you want it to match or with any other aftermarket front bumper. Now, this XRC Generation 2 line is a little bit more expensive than some of the other bumpers on the market. But for the build quality and the features, in my opinion, it's worth it if you have the budget.
This bumper is built from three sixteenths inch steel and is covered in a two-stage textured black powder-coated finish, which looks pretty good and also will hold up well and protect the bumper against rust and corrosion for a good long time. As far as features go, this bumper has D-ring mounts that are welded right through it and bolt directly into the frame rails, giving you plenty of strength if you need to use them for a recovery point. It also has a two-inch receiver that is a class III tow rated receiver right in the center, so it gives you the option to tow a light trailer if you decide you want to or use that as a third recovery point.
The bumper is gonna be more than strong enough to tow whatever trailer the Jeep can tow. So your towing capacity is going to be limited to the towing capacity of the vehicle. For those of you with a four-door, you're going to be limited to 3,500 pounds with a 350-pound tongue weight capacity. And the two-door is limited to a 2,000-pound towing capacity with a 200-pound tongue weight capacity.
Aside from the features that we had already talked about, this bumper has two cutouts right here. And it comes with the reverse lights to fit right inside. The wiring harness that's included gives you a switch, so you can use these as auxiliary lights. But you can also tie them into your factory reverse lights. So when you put the Jeep in reverse, these will come on automatically. This is a really nice feature, because a lot of bumpers don't have cutouts for auxiliary lights. Or if they do have cutouts, they don't include the lights, which leaves you shopping for a light that fits in the hole properly and also leaves you spending a little bit more money.
With the factory tint or the tint on a lot of aftermarket tops, it can be a little bit difficult to see at the back of the Jeep. I personally like having auxiliary reverse lights out back. And this bumper includes them right out of the box. The bumper also has this nice large cutout. So if you are still having a large spare tire in your factory location, you're not going to have an issue with the tire contacting the bumper every time you'd go and try and close the tailgate.
Now, something that Smittybilt is doing with these Generation 2 bumpers is adding a little bit of plastic. Now, the plastic pieces aren't covering up holes in the bumper. They actually go right over top of the solid steel. So in my opinion, they're more of a styling modification than anything else. And these are a ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene, which just means they're gonna be really strong plastic. They're gonna hold up well to UV light. They're not going to crack, fade. And if you do bang them off of a rock, they're gonna hold up, again, without cracking. Of course, you will be able to mar them, because they're just plastic. But they do add a little bit of a styling cue that a lot of other bumpers don't have. The plastic, along with the other angles that are built into the bumper, do make it a little bit unique with.
This bumper can also be used with Smittybilt's XRC tire carrier. It's designed to be used with that carrier. So you would just take off this plate right over here, install all of the hardware and the mounting bracket for your tire carrier. And you can turn this right into a tire carrier. Now, if you're not using a tire carrier, you do have these two stainless steel plates right up on top of the bumper. One of them has XRC laser cut into it. In my opinion, I don't really like this silver with the black. I would probably go ahead and spray-paint those. But some of you guys may like the silver. And if you don't, you can always change it up.
This bumper is going to install on to your JK in much the same way as a lot of other factory bumpers. The first step in the installation is, of course, to remove your factory rear bumper, which you'll do by removing the two bolts in each frame rail and the two in the rear crossmember. Once you have the factory rear bumper pulled off, you can remove the rear tow hook if you have one and then start installing your new bumper.
The first step in the installation is to slide the nut plate inside of each frame rail. From there, you can lift up the bumper, set it over the frame rails, and put a couple of bolts in from either side. You're gonna wanna leave those loose for right now. After that, you can move to the center section of the bumper where you'll put another sandwich plate behind the rear crossmember and bolt that directly into the bumper. That's going to give you a ton of strength for towing and for recovery.
That's pretty much it for the bumper after you torque down all of the bolts. Of course, if you're going to be installing the included LED lights, you wanna install those into their slots before you install the bumper on to the Jeep. And they pretty much just clip right into place. There isn't much to that installation.
Then once you have the bumper installed, you can go to wiring. The lights do come with the wiring harness that has a control module. And it's a pretty nice harness. It also includes a switch. So you can turn the lights on or off with the switch. Or you can tie into your factory reverse lights' circuit and have them come on automatically.
The whole installation for the bumper itself should take you less than two hours, and you won't need any specialty tools, just some regular hand tools. However, the lights and the wiring may take you a little bit longer, depending on how clean you wanna do the wiring and where you decide to mount if switched.
This bumper is going to be a little bit more expensive than some of Smittybilt's other options. Now, there is a little bit more to this one as far as the lights go, the material, the features, just the design in general. So a little bit of that price I can certainly understand. However, if you're looking for a bumper-tire carrier combo, by the time you get the tire carrier that goes with this new bumper, you are going to be up over the price tag of a lot of others on the market. That being said, this is a new bumper. So if you wanna have something that's a little bit unique, that not a lot of other people are running, if this has the features and the looks you're after and you have the budget for it, I don't have anything bad to say about this setup.
So if you're looking to swap out the factory rear bumper on your JK with one that has more features, better looks, and some auxiliary reverse lights built right in, I would definitely recommend taking a look at this Smittybilt XRC Gen 2.
So that's my review of the Smittybilt XRC Gen2 rear bumper fitting all 2007 to 2016 JKs that you can find right here at extremeterrain.com.