To no one’s surprise, the Jeep Gladiator gets all of the Wrangler’s updates
But we can’t help but wonder, where the heck is the 4xe?
Jeep gave its bread-and-butter Wrangler SUV a small update earlier this year, so we knew it’d only be a matter of time before the same changes made their way to the Gladiator pickup. After all, the two off-roaders are pretty much the same. One is just, you know, a truck. Americans love trucks.
So, what’s new? Visually, the Gladiator gets the Wrangler’s updated seven-slot grille, and very cool-sounding “windshield-integrated trail-ready stealth antenna", which just means it’s no longer a large physical antenna that’ll get damaged in a car wash. The Gladiator has three different roof designs, letting you turn this truck into a convertible, and the updated pickup has seven new wheel options, as well.
Inside, the Gladiator has the same 12.3-inch Uconnect 5 infotainment system found in the Wrangler, which is a nice improvement over the old 8.4-inch touchscreen. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connect wirelessly, and Uconnect includes Jeep’s Trails Offroad tech suite, which gives you detailed guides for a whole bunch of trails, making it easier to go offroad – something the company says 75 per cent of its owners actually do.
New Gladiator Mojave X and Rubicon X models have an expanded list of features, including 12-way power front seats and Nappa leather, which you'll almost certainly get filthy after a long day of trail-bombing. None of the Gladiator's go-anywhere prowess is affected by this update, with the Jeep still having one of the most advanced four-wheel-drive systems available today, as well as impressive offroad geometry and all-terrain tires as large as 33 inches in diameter.
Unlike the Wrangler, which is offered with a choice of powertrains, Jeep only sells the Gladiator with its naturally aspirated 3.6-liter V6. This engine makes 285hp and 260lb ft of torque, and you can get it with either an eight-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission. The diesel-powered Gladiator is no longer available. Sad stuff, for sure.
The big thing that seems to be missing from the Gladiator lineup, however, is a plug-in hybrid 4xe version, which has been offered on the Wrangler for a few years. Jeep says it’s committed to expanding its electrified offerings, so it’s likely only a matter of time before a Gladiator 4xe becomes available. Still, it’s weird that it’s taking so long, especially given the commonality between the Wrangler and Gladiator.
In any case, following its debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week, look for the updated Jeep Gladiator to hit dealers before the end of this year.
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