The Jeep Gladiator pickup truck came out of the gates hot, and it certainly was one of the most exciting vehicles to emerge last year. But sales have waned, and the model has been criticized for being too expensive and not ideal for off-roading due to its longer wheelbase. It went from being one of the best-selling Jeeps to one of the worst-selling pickups in the segment within a very short time period. The new Willys Edition version of the Gladiator for 2021 will hopefully give the truck an uptick in sales.
The Willys treatment comes over to the Gladiator from the Wrangler. Of course, the "Willys" iconic print shows up on the sides of the hood, and there are plenty of aesthetic additions. Not only does it look more aggressive than the standard Gladiator Sport on which it's based, but it also gets equipment that should appeal to buyers. The Gladiator Willys receives nice bits like rock rails and shocks from the Rubicon model, and a limited-slip differential, special 17-inch black wheels shod with 32-inch BFGoodrich KM2 mud terrain tires, and that prominent all-black grille that really changes the look of the Gladiator.
The Willys also comes standard with the Gladiator's Technology Group (7.0" Touchscreen; Automatic Climate Control, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, 7.0" TFT Gauge Display, GPS, Integrated Center Stack Radio; SiriusXM w/ 1-Yr. Subscription) and the Convenience Group (Remote start system, Universal garage door opener).
Buyers can add an 8.4-inch Uconnect system, as well as Jeep's Advanced Safety Group (Advanced Brake Assist, Enhanced Adaptive Cruise Control, Full Speed Forward Collision Warning Plus), the Cargo Management Group (which includes an upgraded alternator and 400-Watt inverter), the Cold Weather Group (Heated Seats, Heated Steering Wheel), and the Trailer-Tow Package (240 Amp Alternator, 245/75R17 BSW All-Terrain Dueler Tire, 4.10 Rear Axle Ratio, Anti-Lock 4-Wheel Disc Brakes, Class IV Receiver Hitch, Dana M210 Wide Front Axle, Dana M220 Wide Rear Axle, Daytime Running Lamp System, Heavy Duty Engine Cooling, Trailer Hitch Zoom).
In terms of power, the 3.6-liter V6 engine with 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque is standard, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. You can add an 8-speed automatic transmission for $2,000 and the torquey 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 for $4,000 more.
Pricing for the Gladiator Willys Edition starts at $36,760, and it's certainly more affordable than the average price of Gladiators being purchased today (about $60K!). Be careful when you start adding features and packages since it makes the price climb rather rapidly.