In the Spotlight with Christian Thompson

In the Spotlight with Christian Thompson

We love Jeeps—but we love showing off our customers' Jeeps even more. That's why we created the "In the Spotlight" category, which highlights the best of Rough Country customers' vehicles. These beasts of the road might be a tricked-out Rubicon or the classic Jeep Cherokee, but they're all in a class by themselves. The Jeep Cherokee XJ has a cult following, but why? In this Spotlight edition, we follow XJ enthusiast and owner Christian Thompson on his 2001 Jeep Cherokee Sport build.

When asked why he chose this Jeep model, Christian stated, "Primarily, I've always enjoyed the XJ platform, and after doing the research and being around other enthusiasts, it was the most logical choice. Also, I needed a utilitarian vehicle to support my family's needs."

Jeep Cherokee XJJeep Cherokee XJ

Choosing the right platform for your build can be tricky. After spotting the XJ for sale, Christian decided it was perfect for what he was looking for. This Jeep build was taken on to make the vehicle more suited to his needs. To improve its looks and performance, Christian knew he would add a lift kit as part of the build. As a DIY'er, he was able to tackle the project himself, which is one of the best parts of modifying your vehicle.

Jeep Cherokee Sport XJJeep Cherokee Sport XJ

Along with a 3" Suspension Kit, Christian added an N3 Steering Stabilizer to replace the smaller stock unit with a heavy-duty replacement. He replaced the XJ front and rear bumpers with Rough Country bumpers that could handle daily driving duties and conquer more terrain. Next, he installed a high-quality, heavy-duty winch setup using the PRO 12000s. Then, he added a Winch Shackle, Black D-Rings, and D-Ring Isolators to finish the look. He also added body armor to protect his Jeep from any damage that may occur on an off-road excursion.

3-Inch Lift Kit Jeep Cherokee XJ3-Inch Lift Kit Jeep Cherokee XJ

Lighting is a key part of any vehicle build, but it can be essential for Jeeps. The terrain they're designed to navigate often requires light to see where you're going and what's coming at you. Along with installing headlight upgrades, Christian added 8" DRL lights, 20" DRL lights, and an MLC-6 light controller to ensure that all of these lights are working together seamlessly. Although rust on portions of the vehicle made the process take longer than it might have otherwise, Christian was able to install all the upgrades himself. With clear instructions and components that were manufactured to fit precisely with the vehicle, he feels the installation process was simple.

Headlights Jeep XJHeadlights Jeep XJ

When asked what his favorite modification on the Jeep has been so far, Christian stated, "Truthfully, I can't really pick one over the other. The build turned out very well, and each piece added to the puzzle only enhanced the overall aesthetics." This is a very sleek-looking Jeep and definitely one that's out of the ordinary. With a solid base to get things started and choosing his customization options, Christian has shown that he is a builder who knows how to incorporate his style into every aspect of a build.

Jeep Cherokee Sport XJJeep Cherokee Sport XJ

No matter why you need a new suspension lift, Rough Country has got you covered. From the mild to the wild, we offer suspension components that will fit your needs and your budget. And since we've applied these products to our own vehicles, we know just how good they are. Do you have a vehicle to be featured? Send us an email at [email protected] for more information.

Tags: Jeep, Cherokee, XJ,

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