The Reds recovered from their loss to the Hurricanes last week by beating the Rebels 18-33 in Melbourne with a bonus point.
The result extends the Reds lead over the Waratahs in the Australian conference to 13 points although the Waratahs have yet to play this weekend.
The result also indicates the improvements that the Rebels have made as they lost 53-3 to the Reds in their Brisbane Round 5 clash seven weeks ago.
Compared to their last meeting the Rebels were more competitive this time, with Julian Huxley's wayward goalkicking preventing them from getting much closer on the scoreboard.
Huxley missed 10 points worth of kicks when the home side were still in the hunt and they also lost fly-half James Hilgendorf with a serious ankle injury as he scored their only first-half try in the 29th minute.
The Rebels were unable to call on their other regular playmaker Danny Cipriani because the English international was suspended from the game by the team for disciplinary reasons.
The Reds led 8-26 at half time after the Rebels took an early lead with a penalty by Huxley.
The victory is the Reds' ninth win of the campaign, their most since 1996, as they gear up for next week's showdown with competition pacesetters the Blues.
Wallabies' fly-half Quade Cooper had an off game by his standards, but the Reds were beneficiaries of some soft tries and flanker Scott Higginbotham broke through three tackles to score in the 18th minute, followed by another easy try by number eighth Radike Samo off a Will Genia break midway through the half.
Wallabies' scrum-half Genia also provided a perfect kick across field for winger Dom Shipperley to score to give the Reds a commanding 26-8 lead at halftime.
But the Rebels made it a more even second half, outscoring the Reds 10-7.
Reds centre Scott Harris was yellow-carded for repeated infringements as the Rebels pressed their try-line and in his absence Rebels back Afusipa Taumoepeau crossed for his first Super rugby try.
But the Reds sealed the win in the 63rd minute when winger Digby Ioane stepped past a flimsy attempt from Peter Betham to outpace the defence for the scoring bonus point.
Rebels winger Betham scored his side's third try with five minutes left.
Final score Rebels 18 Reds 33
Tries - J Hilgendorf, A. Taumoepeau , P Betham
Pen - J Huxley
Tries - S. Higginbotham, R Samo, D Shipperley, D Ioane
Pen - Q Cooper 3
Con - Q Cooper 2
Cards - M Harris (54th min) Yellow
Referees: Bryce Lawrence (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Ian Smith (Australia), Simon Moore (Australia)
Television match official: Matt Goddard (Australia)
Rebels : 1. Greg Somerville , 2. Ged Robinson , 3. Laurie Weeks , 4. Alister Campbell , 5. Hugh Pyle , 6. Hoani Macdonald , 7. Michael Lipman , 8. Gareth Delve (vc) , 9. Nick Phipps , 10. James Hilgendorf , 11. Peter Betham , 12. Stirling Mortlock (c) , 13. Mark Gerrard , 14. Lachlan Mitchell , 15. Julian Huxley
Reserves 16. Heath Tessmann , 17. Nic Henderson , 18. Adam Byrnes , 19 , Tim Davidson , 20. Sam Cordingley , 21. Cooper Vuna , 22. Afusipa Taumoepeau
Reds : 1. Ben Daley , 2. Saia Faingaa , 3. James Slipper , 4. Rob Simmons , 5. James Horwill (c) , 6. Scott Higginbotham , 7. Beau Robinson , 8. Radike Samo , 9. Will Genia , 10. Quade Cooper , 11. Digby Ioane , 12. Mike Harris , 13. Anthony Faingaa , 14. Luke Morahan , 15. Ben Lucas
Reserves : 16. James Hanson , 17. Greg Holmes , 18. Adam Wallace-Harrison , 19. Leroy Houston , 20. Jake Schatz , 21. Will Chambers , 22. Dom Shipperley