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This is Jeep’s new military-spec Gladiator

Well it’s still a prototype for now, but production could begin soon

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Well, this is pretty big news isn’t it. The original Willys Jeep was used extensively during WW2, with production numbers reaching almost 650,000 thanks to the efforts of both Willys, Ford and in part, Bantam.

The all-terrain, go-anywhere Jeep remained in military service for years to come. And if that wasn’t enough, it also went on to become the world’s first mass-produced four-wheel drive car for civilians. It’d be fair to say it left quite a legacy.

There’s no pressure at all on this new military-spec Jeep then. Nope, none at all. Definitely not.

What you see above is a prototype known as the Jeep Gladiator Extreme Military-Grade Truck (XMT). It’s a collaboration between Jeep itself and the makers of the Humvee – AM General – who have over 100 years of experience in the defence industry.

The companies describe the Gladiator XMT as a lightweight military truck, which has been fitted with both custom-built and commercially available military-grade parts. It’ll come in both petrol and diesel forms too, whichever your country’s army prefers.

We don’t know too much else about the mechanicals, although presumably there’s some kind of military secrets act that protects that kind of thing. Bloody red tape. 

We do know, though, that the Gladiator was chosen as the base car thanks to its advanced 4x4 systems, its locking differentials and the impressive approach, breakover and departure angles that it manages. Plus, a near-3,500kg towing capacity also helps.

As previously mentioned, the Gladiator XMT is still a prototype for now. It’s currently being shown at the Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA), but if enough contracts and orders come in then Jeep and AM General will put it into production in the second half of next year.

Reckon it should inspire an ultra-hardcore civilian version?

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