Going into its second year of production, the Jeep® brand’s most capable truck ever is getting even better for the 2021 model year. The 2021 Jeep® Gladiator (JT) continues to be the only midsize pickup to offer open-air freedom, functionality, and versatility. The Gladiator is gearing up to get away from just the lifestyle midsize pickup and ready to take the midsize segment head-on. Thanks to our dealer connections, we are getting details on Jeep’s midsized truck for the new model year.
Starting with the powertrains for the 2021 model year, the award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 returns with 285 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque and still features engine stop-start (ESS) as standard equipment. The Pentastar continues to offer a 6-speed manual transmission as standard equipment, while an 8-speed automatic is optional.
But the Pentastar will not be only for 2021, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 will finally join the lineup. It will deliver 260 horsepower and 442 lb.-ft. of torque and is paired to only an 8-speed automatic transmission. The new EcoDiesel will be offered across the lineup, except for the “Desert Rated” Mojave model, which will continue to offer only the Pentastar.
When it comes to the exterior, everything is virtually unchanged for the 2021 model year. The only model that gets attention on the outside is the Sport S. The Gladiator Sport S model will now be available with black-painted aluminum wheels and body-colored fender flares will now be standard on the Sport S as well. Two new exterior colors will join the lineup for 2021. The concept color called “Snazzberry” will make it to production, while the popular Wrangler color called Sarge will also join the lineup. Both colors will be available later in the model year.
The lineup will consist of six trim-levels for the 2021 model year with Sport, Sport S, Overland, Rubicon, Mojave, and the luxury-oriented High Altitude.
When it comes to technology changes for the new model year, the Gladiator will follow suit with the Wrangler. The popular Forward Facing Camera is now available on Overland models. Selectable Tire Fill-Alerts (or STFA) have also now been added to Gladiator models that feature the 7-inch Uconnect infotainment system. This allows the horn to honk once when the vehicle has reached its desired tire pressure or three times when it is too high or low when filling your tires after coming off the trail.
The popular Technology Group package which has been an option on the Gladiator Sport S models has now become standard equipment on the 2021 Sport S model.
When it comes to capability, the Gladiator a series of unique four-wheel-drive (4×4) systems. The Command-Trac 4×4 system features a two-speed transfer case with a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio, and heavy-duty third-generation Dana 44 front and rear axles with a 3.73 rear axle ratio and is standard on Sport, Sport S, Overland, Mojave, High Altitude models. For 2021, the Selec-Trac two-speed transfer case with full-time four-wheel drive and a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio is now available on those models. The Selec-Trac 4×4 system is intuitive and allows the driver to set it and forget it, while constantly sending power to the front and rear wheels.
On Gladiator Rubicon, a standard Rock-Trac 4×4 system features heavy-duty third-generation Dana 44 front and rear axles with a “4LO” ratio of 4:1. A 4.10 front and rear axle ratio is standard as are Tru-Lok locking differentials. Following the Wrangler Rubicon, a full-time Rock-Trac 4×4 system will be available on Gladiator Rubicon for the first time in 2021.
It looks to be an exciting model year for the Gladiator pickup. What is your favorite new addition to the 2021 model lineup? Let us know in the comments below.