Jeep has confirmed that it will introduce a turbo-diesel Gladiator dual-cab ute.
In a simple Twitter post that reads “You spoke. We listened.” Jeep has confirmed that it will introduce a turbo-diesel Gladiator dual-cab ute in the last quarter of 2020 in the US, and with the popularity of diesel dual-cabs in Australia, there’s no doubt Jeep Australia will be keen to get its hands on this variant as soon as it possibly can.
The turbo-diesel engine in question is not the 2.2L four-cylinder unit used in the current Wrangler Rubicon, but the 3.0-litre V6 EcoDiesel that’s used in other FCA product including the Jeep Wrangler JL in the US, and the Grand Cherokee and RAM 1500 pick-up. While the Aussie-spec Wrangler Rubicon’s 2.2L diesel makes 147kW and 450Nm, the 3.0L V6 EcoDiesel makes a claimed 184kW of power and 570Nm of torque, at least when doing service in the Grand Cherokee. While not the most powerful 3.0L V6 on the market, it’s certainly competitive with the best when it comes to peak torque output, and is just shy of the Volkswagen Amarok V6’s claimed 200kW/580Nm peak outputs. The 3.0L EcoDiesel can be mated to a six-speed manual gearbox or an eight-speed auto in US-market Wranglers.
The Gladiator is currently only available with Jeep’s 3.6L V6 petrol engine which, while refined and powerful enough with a claimed 209kW on tap, only has a modest torque output of 347Nm. The V6 turbo-diesel engine will not only give the Gladiator much better performance, it should also offer improved fuel economy which will in turn result in a greater touring range.
While Aussie buyers love diesel utes, most Americans still prefer big petrol engines, which is probably why Jeep also dropped a blurry picture on its Twitter feed over the weekend showing either a Wrangler or Gladiator bonnet with a ‘392’ decal on it, signifying a 6.4-litre V8 Hemi lurking underneath. For those who subscribe to the theory ‘too much power is never enough’, the V8 Hemi delivers, with a stonking 344kW and 624Nm when fitted to the Aussie-spec Grand Cherokee SRT.
Even if it goes into production, we doubt there would ever be much chance of a V8 Hemi variant of either the Wrangler or Gladiator coming to Australia, but never say never; after all, who would’ve thought Jeep would market the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk 6.2L supercharged V8 Down Under, with its totally crackers 522kW/868Nm output?