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Test drove a Gladiator.....

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  • Test drove a Gladiator.....

    ... and it was ok.

    I can't say I was mesmerized. Nothing like I was when I bought the 2015 Ram I had. (had... )

    Here's what I have learned over the last few months.
    The Gladiator is over priced in my opinion. The competitors in the market have some much better bang-for-buck than the Jeep. Across the board, the big stats seem to swing form model to model. The Gladiator isn't the in-yo-face slam we hoped for. I admit that having never spent one second in a JL, I don't feel all that impressed. There are some nice things about the interior, but it feels.... cheap. How can I say this, a guy owning a 2007 JK? Simple. My 2007 RUBICON cost me less than the best deal I can find on a JL sport. With no options. The Gladiator we test drove was the exact same price as my 2019 Ram, and I'm sorry, but there is no comparison on the interior feel between the two. The prices are leaving the mid-size range and stretching into the full-size range. but I don't want to continue on like I hated it.

    The ride was great. Power was ok. The 3.6 is doing the job, but it did feel like it was operating near its limit. There didn't seem to be a whole bunch of power left over. Honestly, it felt similar to the 3.8 in my JK before I modded it. When it was stock, it felt ok. Certainly no power house, but it could hang. Once the steel bumpers, winch, larger tires.... well. You get the idea. I've been there. Wait. I'm STILL there. This is a strange feeling I have, now. With my experience of the JK power and the Gladiator's similar feeling I'm not sure how to take this thing.

    I've owned 4 Mopars with the 8 speed transmission. Its a really good transmission. Two have been 3.6 powered cars and two have been 5.7 powered trucks. We currently have a 2019 1500. My previous truck had the 3.92 rear end. Honestly that is an amazing towing setup. The 1500 chassis is solid. Power for days and on more than one occasion even with our large pontoon boat in tow, that truck had the power to leave tracks on asphalt.

    So, sure I'm comparing a full size, v8 truck to a mid size v6 truck. But. Here's the thing. My 2019 doesn't have the 3.92, it has the 3.24. Therefore the towing capacity is limited to under 8,000 pounds. Something else I've noticed is that the taller gear ratio seems to keep the 5.7 OUT of Eco Mode. The 2015 was ALWAYS in Eco Mode over 55mph unless going up steep hills. Even light acceleration, it would stay in Eco. This 2019 does not. It floats in and out of Eco constantly. Again, why am I bringing this up? Well. The sales guy I spoke to mentioned that the PAYLOAD capacity of the Gladiator is higher than the 1500 Ram? Ok.

    The Gladiator definitely looks like it has the wheelbase to handle a trailer. I've played around a good bit on the "Build Your Own" function online. (let's face it, day dreams are all I got)
    From what I can tell, the "Max Tow" option is only available on the Sport and Sport Plus. Not on the Overland and Not on the Rubicon. Obviously the 4.10 gearing is standard on the Rubicon, but does the Rubicon also come standard with the additional cooling features that the Max Tow Package supposedly comes with? Makes me think a little bit... but the Max Tow also relates to having a heavier duty D44 axle?

    Ok. The Gladiator will nearly handle the same max capacity as my 1500 truck. (nearly)
    But. My boat only weighs around... oh... 4,000 pounds full of fuel. I think an important thing that could be getting overlooked is the wind resistance of a trailer. That boat is a massive wind-anchor. The diesel is reportedly NOT going to have any improvement over the base Gladiator.... again due to cooling limitations.

    Now I'm stuck.
    Financially.
    Morally.
    Statistically.


    What's a Jeep guy to do?......


    The first one of you that says "sell the boat" gets a years supply of rotting fish oil.
    '07 Unlimited Rubicon, 2015 Ram 1500 Crew, '73 Super Beetle, '08 KLR650, '07 Suxuki GZ250 (wife)
    a '73 CJ5 i used to own , Find your State Laws

  • #2
    Good honest review and take on the Gladiator JT. Easy to spend less on trucks to pull similar loads but only the JT provides the looks, image and versatility beyond the JT max towing capability. Other than the latest Tesla truck most pickup trucks look the same thus the JT fills a niche. You're not the only one "stuck" financially, morally, statistically....lol. Price is a factor for this expensive "toy".

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    • #3
      Sell the boat b1pig . Nice review on the JT. I'm not really a truck guy. Although I do like the look of the JT. I highly doubt I'll ever go into debt for one.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Jeepthurmick View Post
        Sell the boat b1pig . Nice review on the JT. I'm not really a truck guy. Although I do like the look of the JT. I highly doubt I'll ever go into debt for one.
        there's a little part of me that would do it.... but as little as that boat costs me a month, it would hardly put a dent in the payment.



        BTW....
        Your location has been obtained via questionable Pakistani satelite feed..... standby for that shipment. No signature required.

        '07 Unlimited Rubicon, 2015 Ram 1500 Crew, '73 Super Beetle, '08 KLR650, '07 Suxuki GZ250 (wife)
        a '73 CJ5 i used to own , Find your State Laws

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