Nearly four years of patience will officially come to an end on June 21 when Jeep officially unveils the eagerly awaited Gladiator covers in South Africa.
Certified for local market back in April, the Stellantis’ first bakkie owned since then Comanche based XJ Cherokee of 30 years ago it shares much of its design and overall look with the Wrangler, but with a gain of 492 mm in the bottom of the wheel in response to the replacement of the boot with a load bed capable of carrying up to 725 kg depending on the model .
Like the four-door Wrangler Unlimited, the Jeep Gladiator is only offered as a double cabin, but retains the ability to fully remove its doors and fold the windshield on the bonnet.
While the South African specification remains unknown at present, US models offer a choice of two removable roof options; a hard top with three pieces of black or color coding, or what Jeep calls the Sunrider consisting of a soft-top roof that Jeep bakkie has never offered before.
The options continue with the availability of two four-wheel drive systems; the Command-Track and Rock-Track which include not only the low range shift case, but heavy duty Dana front and rear axles, steel bumpers, thicker front and rear skip plates, the Tru-Lok differential and Rubicon models, Tires 33-inch all-terrain folded on a unique 17-inch model alloy wheels.
Riding on the same body-on-frame platform as the Wrangler, the Gladiator has a ground clearance of 282 mm, a wading depth of 762 mm and approach, exit and resolution angles of 43.6 degrees, 26 degrees and 20.3 degrees respectively.
In terms of specification, the Gladiator is likely to mirror the Wrangler and leave the Sport S and Overland trim mid – range levels offered in the United States.
It makes the Sport and Rubicon entry-level top-notch, the first equipped as standard with a five-inch Uconnect touch screen infotainment system and the second with an 8.4-inch display. Both incorporate Apple CarPlay and Android Auto with integrated satellite navigation included on the latter.
On the Sport, the Rubicon comes with a standard 3.5-inch TFT instrument cluster display with a seven-inch star cluster of digital instruments. Other features include a heated steering wheel, keyless entry, heated leather or cloth front seats, push-button boot and up to three USB ports.
Safety comes in the form of Rear Cross Traffic Alerts, Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitoring, Stability Control with Override Mitigation and an advanced front camera specifically designed for off-road use.
First, Gladiator offers the US market a choice of two engines; the superb petrol 3.6 Pentastar V6 rated at 213kW / 353Nm and the 3.0 EcoDiesel V6 emitting 190kW / 600Nm.
For South Africa, however, only petrol is expected after the country’s recent oil burner was phased out. Grand Cherokeeand in response to Jeep focuses on electrification rather than diesel.
It therefore means that the South African Gladiator is likely to produce the same 209kW / 347Nm, similar to the Wrangler, which will be delivered to all four wheels via the eight-speed automatic gearbox because the six-speed manual is available in the States as a definite destination. .
Take the Wrangler alongside the Toledo Plant in Ohio, the pricing of the Gladiator is yet to be confirmed, but expect a likely increase on the first one, which retails from R899 900 to R999 900.
Our thoughts on the Wrangler can be seen here.
Wait almost over: Jeep Gladiator debuting on 21 June Source link Wait almost over: Jeep Gladiator debuting on 21 June