Mohammed Sharif introduces us to his modified Wrangler Sahara
The Wrangler Jeep, was formally announced in February 1986 at the Chicago Auto Show. Wranglers used a separate body and frame, rigid solid axles both front and rear, a fold-flat windshield, and could be driven without doors. It was then further revised in 1996, and completely redesigned in 2006. In addition to the model name Wrangler, each model received a designation corresponding to its generation, and the car has lived on as a legend. What sets the Jeep Wrangler apart from other cars is its ability to be modified, and customised to whatever the owner’s personal tastes and style is. Mohammed Sharif, a seasoned car modifier chose to do exactly this when he bought his 2007 model. This is no longer a car…or a 4x4 it’s a BEAST!!!
Car Make and Model:
Jeep Wrangler Sahara
Year of the Car:
What cars have you previously owned?
I’ve actually owned quite a lot of cars, I get a new car almost every year, if not...then at least every two years. And it’s mainly just because I like trying out different cars. Some of the ones I’ve owned recently are the Porsche Panamera S, Porsche Techart Turbo, Corvette Z06, Camaro SS , 300 ZX, Golf Gti , VW Corrado , Dodge Challenger RT and many more.
Have you modified any previous cars, or is this your first?
Believe it or not, I have modified all of them. I started working on my first project at the age of 17, and that’s when I got the bug. Since then I haven’t been able to help myself and it doesn’t always have to be big modifications. Sometimes its only the rims or paintwork, while other times the scope of work is more technical like engine, intakes, exhausts etc. Now I don’t just modify my own cars but modify my friend’s and family’s cars. I just love it.
Why this car?
Well its one of the easiest to modify, because there are so many different styled parts available. You can really customise it and make it your own. Also visually there are so many things you can change it really is one of the best looking cars for aftermods. Best part is you can enjoy driving it all through the year.
How does your car differ from others in the range?
Well originally it was just a stock Wrangler Sahara, but now because of the mods it has big wheels, short doors, heavy duty bumpers and many custom parts. The list is endless on this one.
Did you buy this car with the intention of modifying it?
Yes, I pretty much buy all the cars with the intention of modifying them, but this one was definitely so, just because there is such a large range of options and things to do with it. You can completely change the look of the jeep just by making small changes and as you can see with mine, thats what I managed to achieve.
How long have you had the car, and how long before you decided to start morphing it?
I brought the car about a year ago and pretty much started working on it straight away and it’s been a gradual process over the year, I ordered the parts bit by bit and then had them fitted to the car. As a matter of fact I’m not not completely finished. I intend to make a few more mods, it’s a continuing process and it may take a while until its completely finished.
Where have you got the majority of the parts from?
I’ve ordered the parts online from different... different countries, some from USA some Dubai and some Bahrain. It depends on the part, because different places are better for different things. I just do my research, find the piece I like and then go for it.
What modification did you do at a garage? Did you do any yourself?
The modifications have been done in several different garages as we have a lot of specialised placed in Bahrain. It also depends on the part or mod too. Some are better at working on the technical side of things, like suspension installations for example while others are better for working on aesthetics like body work, so it just depends.
Have you encountered any problems whist modifying the car? If so what? and how did you overcome them?
Yes, I did encounter a few problems for example when I installed the big wheels I couldn’t go off-road because the tire was scratching the fender, so I then had to order a lift kit to keep a gap between the two. This is usually the case, when you modify or change one thing... you usually have to change or adjust other parts around it so it all works in harmony. A couple of times I also had problems finding mechanics who knew how to fit or change the parts, as it isn’t always as straight forward as just buying a new part and fitting it into the car. Sometimes it has to be cut or bent or adjusted to fit the car, but it’s all a learning curve.
What is the before and after affects?
There it quite a large difference between the stock Wrangler and the customised Wrangler. The main difference I have noticed is that the car feels a lot heavier to drive, despite loosing its roof and doors. It’s also a lot wider because of the tyres, I feel like I’m driving a monster truck and I’ve got to admit I love it !!
If you don’t mind saying roughly how much have you spent doing this car up?
You know considering the amount of modifications I have made to the car, and how different it looks visually I haven’t spent as much as you would think, I would say around BHD2000, but that’s just on the parts.
How is the car to drive now compared to how it was before?
It’s a little heavier to drive because as of yet I haven’t done anything to the engine, but its way more fun to drive because it lacks a roof and doors, people actually stop and stare, they take photos, and when you park in next to a stock jeep you can really see the difference.
Do you plan to make future modifications to this car, if so what?
Yes, I do, as I said its still a work in progress, I’m quite happy with the exterior so far, next I’m getting under the hood. I need to bring the engine up to the same level as the rest of the jeep. Because of it new tyres and size, it feels like its lacking a little power so I plan to put in a supercharge which will not only add the power, but will make it a lot more fun to drive.
Do you manage to drive the car regularly or is it more of a show piece?
It’s still a daily driver, great to take my friends out and fun for the family, but at the same time it is also a show piece and it is ready for any car show. I just have to be careful when it comes to the police because of regulations. When I re-register the car I have to take certain mods off and replace original parts. Once I’ve got the registration green light on… I put all the modifications back on.
Would you do this again? with another car and modify it? If so, what car? and what mods?
Yes, of course just like I’ve been doing for years. I don’t think I’ll ever stop getting enjoying modifying cars. Next I’m thinking of is going for the Porsche 997 turbo. I would like to start experimenting with the engine, trying to get more power for the track, make a few changes to the body work and add custom wheels... something like that.
If money was no object what would be your dream modification project?
Definitely a track race car, something like a Porsche GT2RS. I would love to just make it faster, add a bigger turbo, custom tune, custom wheels. Just see how far I could push it on the race track.
Do you have any advice for anyone thinking about modifying their car?
Yes, make sure you select professional people and garages to work on it as this will help save you time and money. Shop around for the parts, don’t just buy the first cheapest part you see, because at the end of the day you pay for what you get. It will just look bad after a while, and finally if you decide to go the whole hog like me, you don’t want things breaking on you due to poor quality. Also keep an eye out for the police and traffic check points, those can get you in quite a lot of trouble!
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