After years of rumours and months of teasing, Jeep has finally revealed the 2020 Jeep Gladiator. Using a stretched version of the Wrangler’s architecture, the Gladiator is 800mm longer than the four-door Wrangler with a 3,487mm long wheelbase. Overall around 200mm longer than the top-selling Toyota HiLux, the Gladiator is a big vehicle.
Key to the Gladiator’s key selling points are its 3.5-tonne towing capacity, its 725kg payload limit and its serious off-road ability – way more serious than any current ute in Australia. Confirmed for an Australian launch in early 2020, the Gladiator will likely offer both petrol and diesel power upon its local release.
“Unquestionably a truck and instantly recognisable as a Jeep, the all-new 2020 Gladiator is the ultimate vehicle for any outdoor adventure,” said Tim Kuniskis, Head of Jeep Brand – North America.
“There is tremendous demand for this unique vehicle from our loyal Jeep customers and pickup truck buyers everywhere.
“Born from a rich and proud heritage of tough, dependable Jeep trucks, Gladiator combines rugged utility, versatility and functionality resulting in the most capable midsize truck ever.”
In the US, four different specifications of Gladiator will be offered – Sport, Sport S, Overland and Rubicon and all will come with the same 212kW/352Nm 3.6-litre petrol V6 as the Wrangler. A 194kW/600Nm 3.0-litre diesel V6 has also been confirmed for production, though it’s not known if Australia will receive this engine. Matched to either a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic, the Gladiator will also offer a two-speed transfer case, a 2.72:1 low range ratio and heavy duty axles to further enhance its off road ability – the Rubicon model goes further with a 4:1 ratio, locking differentials and anti-sway bar disconnection.
To lessen weight further, Jeep has heavily used aluminium for the [removable] doors, bonnet, windscreen frame and tailgate. Stylistically, the Gladiator is pure Jeep. The front borrows almost 100 percent from the Wrangler, while the body and tray all appear elongated to be able to fit more into the ute. The interior of the Gladiator is identical to the Wrangler as well, with plenty of buttons, colour and many Easter eggs – little treats the brand is known for.
While the Jeep Gladiator may be a serious off-roader, there are many creature comforts to keep buyers comfortable. Climate control, keyless entry and start, wireless phone charging, several USB ports, 5.0, 7.0 or 8.4-inch UConnect touchscreens with the latest smartphone connectivity, various trim options, LED lighting and different camera systems are all available.
FCA Australia has confirmed that the Jeep Gladiator will hit Australia in early 2020, while pricing and specifications are yet to be confirmed.
Stay tuned to Chasing Cars for more news from the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show.