The 2020 Jeep Gladiator pickup is celebrating its world debut at the 2018 LA Auto Show. Billed “the most capable midsize truck ever”, it is claimed to offer the best-in-class towing and 4x4 payload.
Originally, the Jeep Gladiator was a concept pickup truck based on the third generation Jeep Wrangler (JK) in 2005. The production model is based on the fourth generation Jeep Wrangler (JL) that arrived last year.
Like the Jeep Wrangler, the Gladiator comes in dozens of different door, top and windshield combinations, allowing for a multitude of configuration possibilities. Off-road purists get the convenience of folding down the windshield as well as the option to select between soft top and hardtops in the midsize pickup truck. Like traditionally designed Jeep vehicles, it aims to deliver open-air freedom with opening roof systems.
Command-Trac and Rock-Trac 4x4 systems, third-gen Dana 44 axles, Tru-Lock electric front-and rear-axle lockers, Trac-Lok LSD, an electronic sway-bar disconnect - a segment-exclusive and 33-inch off-road tyres are the key features FCA mentions for an unmatched off-road capability, which includes up to 30 inches of water fording. The Rubicon model has a forward-facing off-road camera that allows the driver to see the obstructions on the trail easily.
The Jeep Gladiator offers up to 7,650 pounds (3,469.98 kg) and up to 1,600 pounds (725.75 kg) of payload capacity - both best-in-class figures. It is strictly a four-door crew cab, featuring a five-foot steel bed with covered external power source and strong integrated tie-downs.
FCA will sell the Jeep Gladiator with two options: 3.6L Pentastar V6 petrol with ESS and 3.0L EcoDiesel V6 diesel with ESS. The naturally aspirated petrol engine produces 285 hp and 260 lb.-ft. (352.51 Nm) of torque. It sends drive to the wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission or an 8-speed automatic transmission. The turbocharged diesel engine, which the company will offer from 2020, delivers 260 hp and 442 lb.-ft. (599.27 Nm) of torque. It will come paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission as standard.
The Jeep Gladiator will go on sale in the U.S. market in the second quarter of 2019 (April-June 2019). The commercial launch in the EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region will take place in 2020.