The Jeep Gladiator made its global debut at the Los Angeles Motor Show in November and is set to hit the market in 2020. Previously called the Scrambler, the eagerly-anticipated pickup truck from Jeep has been many years in the making, but its not yet confirmed whether the new vehicle will come to the UK.
What do we know about the 2020 Jeep Gladiator?
The Jeep Gladiator is available as a hard and soft top and shares similar body architecture and the same body-on-frame chassis as the Jeep Wrangler. However, its wheelbase is 493mm longer and it measures 5,669mm overall – 787mm longer than the Wrangler – which allows for a very accommodating 1,524mm long load bed. The payload of the US-spec truck is fairly limited at 725kg, although there is a great towing capacity of 4,370kg.
Sitting on 33-inch AT tyres, the Gladiator is strongly geared towards off-road users. The wading depth is rated at 762mm (slightly less than the Ranger’s 800mm) while there is the choice of two off-road systems; the standard Rock-Trac or the more rugged ‘4LO’ which features low range and locking differentials.
Jeep Gladiator 2020 engines
Customers have the choice between two engines; Jeep’s own 3.6-litre V6 petrol generating 285bhp and 353Nm or VM Motori’s 3.0-litre diesel which develops 260hp and 570Nm. Similarly, there’s an option of a 6-speed manual or an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Why is Jeep launching a pickup?
Jeep’s parent company, FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles), has quite a number of issues globally. Sales of Fiat aren’t flattering, while Chrysler’s are falling considerably and the brand could dip below 1% market share in its home market for the first time.
However, Jeep itself is performing extremely well. Sales have more than doubled in the past five years and is on track to reach two million sales by the end of 2018. FCA is keen to capitalise on the popularity of the Jeep brand, and is keen to explore new markets – including pickup trucks with the launch of the new Wrangler next year.
Will the Jeep Gladiator be coming to the UK?
In the UK, the Wrangler made up just around 300 of the Jeep’s 15,000 sales during 2017. It’s mainly sold to lucrative lifestyle and leisure customers, and Jeep’s UK boss has confirmed that he’s giving the Jeep Gladiator serious consideration given the high prices that this market is willing to pay.