The Adventure Rigs team and other media outfits had a chance to join FOX to test out their new Performance Elite 2.5 Series shocks for the Jeep Wrangler JL and Gladiator JT!
The 107 degree Fahrenheit desert temperature made the conditions perfect to test out the new shocks against its siblings – the Performance Series and Factory Race Series. FOX brought out 4 Jeeps equipped with different suspension setups – factory stock, Performance Series, Performance Elite 2.5 Series, and Factory Race Series shocks.
FOX partnered with 4WP in putting together the event in Riverside, California for media and 4WP executives to experience the entire FOX lineup of Jeep-specific products and introduce their Performance Elite 2.5 shocks to the public. It was definitely an eye-opening experience for those who attended. The premier performance shock manufacturer chose to launch their new 2.5 aluminum body Jeep shocks through 4WP and by the time you read this they should already be available at your local 4WP retail locations.
The stock Jeep Wrangler felt capable and at home on the 2-mile dirt trail where we were doing our testing. It had no problems going over small obstacles and rutted sections of the trail and was adequate enough but lacking. It wasn’t until we’d ridden on the FOX-equipped Jeeps that we realized why the hell would one keep their stock Jeep shocks and not upgrade.
FOX’s “entry level” Performance 2.0 Series shocks were a big improvement in handling ruts, washboards, whoops, and loose dirt on the trail. However capable the Performance Series shocks were, it was apparent they lacked the refinement, smoothness, and adjustability of its Factory Race Series big brother. The Jeep (owned by King of the Hammers Champion Jason Scherer) equipped with the Factory Race Series shocks was a completely different beast. We could feel the tires planted on the ground at all times, but at the same time gave us a sensation of floating over the rough sections of the trail. Jason showed us the full capability of the shocks drifting around technical turns at high speeds and flying up rutted hills. FOX’s “Go Big” top of the line shocks are a truly refined suspension system in itself.
The new Performance Elite 2.5 Series shocks was developed to bridge the price and performance gap between the Performance Series and Factory Race Series products. The Gladiator test mule we were in went around the 2-mile dirt trail much smoother and noticeably faster than both the stock Jeep and the one equipped with Performance 2.0 Series shocks. It’s safe to say that the Performance Elite 2.5 Series shocks felt closer in performance to the Factory Race Series than to its little brother. Having 2.5” diameter aluminum shock bodies and external reservoirs proved to be beneficial in the sweltering afternoon temps as the ride quality didn’t seem to diminish with extended use.
Just like on the Factory Race Series shocks, the external adjustments on the reservoirs to control compression and rebound allowed the Performance Elite 2.5 Series on the Gladiator to adapt to varying terrain and driving style with the turn of a knob. These new shocks can handle a lot of abuse as it was designed with durability in mind with its redundant sealing packs and oversized shafts. Just like all FOX shocks, this new offering from FOX is fully-rebuildable which gives you the confidence to “Go Harder”!