The Jeep brand has done everything right over the last decade or so. The updated Wrangler, which was revealed at the 2023 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, shows that Jeep is also focused on technology along with unmatched capabilities. Following in the legendary Jeep’s tracks is the upgraded 2024 Gladiator.
Everything right includes, notably, the 2024 Gladiator being ranked No. 1 for new vehicle quality among midsize trucks in the J.D. Power 2023 U.S. Initial Quality Study (IQS). Between you and I, that’s not really important. In fact, with over 5 million Wranglers now sold, Jeep’s off-roaders, with or without a bed, have never been more desirable.
Powertrain and 4×4 Systems
Before you ask, for 2024, the only engine that will be offered is the standard 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine which delivers 285 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque. Although the PHEV 4xe powertrain will not be on the menu for 2024, it is coming. Beyond that, Stellantis did not specify exactly when. Transmission options include a standard six-speed manual and an optional eight-speed automatic.
New for 2024, the upgraded Gladiator Willys gets a new standard Tru-Lok rear-axle locker that offers improved traction control for rigorous off-roading experiences. Additionally, the Off-road+ mode elevates your adventures by smartly adjusting throttle response, transmission shift points, and traction control. This mode is designed to provide optimal performance for both high-speed runs on sandy terrains and low-speed rock crawling. Remarkably, it also enables the rear axle to be locked even in the 4HI setting for superior control.
The 2024 Gladiator also boasts four advanced 4×4 systems designed for optimal performance, and they are:
o Command-Trac part-time transfer case with 2.72:1 low range ratio
o Selec-Trac full-time transfer case with 2.72:1 low range ratio
o Rock-Trac part-time transfer case with 4:1 low range ratio
o Rock-Trac full-time transfer case with 4:1 low range ratio
Depending on the configuration, the Gladiator continues to offer an impressive combination of towing, payload, and 4×4 capability. Specifically, it can tow up to 7,700 lbs and has a maximum payload capacity of up to 1,725 lbs.
Updated Design and In-cabin Amenities
The 2024 Jeep Gladiator is instantly recognizable, featuring an updated seven-slot grille, windshield-integrated trail-ready stealth antenna, and seven new wheel designs. For those seeking open-air freedom, the Gladiator offers three roof choices and three door choices, including available half doors and removable doors. The new Gladiator is available in Sport, Willys, Mojave, and Rubicon models and is expected to start arriving in dealerships by the end of this year.
Inside, the Gladiator comes with an all-new instrument panel with a 7-inch digital cluster and featuring a standard 12.3-inch Uconnect 5 touchscreen — the largest ever for this model and shared with the updated 2024 Wrangler. This system supports wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Adding to the driving comfort are optional 12-way power-adjustable front seats wrapped in Nappa leather, available in two new models: Mojave X and Rubicon X.
Off-road Specialization: Mojave X and Rubicon X Models
The Gladiator’s portfolio has been expanded with Mojave X and Rubicon X models, featuring steel bumpers and an integrated off-road camera. These new models offer full-time transfer cases and Tru-Lok rear-axle lockers. Both also come equipped with specially-tuned high-performance FOX 2.5-inch internal bypass shocks for optimal handling on high-speed sand runs and rock crawling.
Advanced Safety Features
Safety hasn’t taken a back seat. The 2024 Gladiator now comes standard with first- and second-row side-curtain airbags. Advanced safety features such as standard forward collision warning and standard advanced cruise control with stop functionality are available on Sport S models and above.
State-of-the-Art Technology for Off-Roading
Jeep has partnered with Trails Offroad to become the first automaker to offer built-in off-road adventure trail guides. Available on the Jeep Gladiator’s Uconnect 5 Nav system, the guides provide detailed information on 62 Jeep Badge of Honor trails and can be expanded via a premium subscription to include over 3,000 trail guides. These trails are carefully rated and described, covering various difficulties and landscapes.
The feature also allows for over-the-air updates and real-time navigation to trailheads. Introduced in the 2024 Jeep Wrangler, the system now includes a “Follow Mode” for real-time alerts on waypoints and offers navigation flexibility on bi-directional trails.
The updated 2024 Jeep Gladiator remains a highly desirable vehicle. We can’t help but think that the eventual addition of the PHEV 4xe powertrain will further increase its appeal. We’ll find out more in the near future.