By on November 10, 2018

2019 Jeep Scrambler, Image: Brian Williams/SpiedBilde

Since reports arose last year of Jeep’s intention to use the long-departed Scrambler name for the upcoming Wrangler-based pickup, the media has more or less run with this assumption, placing a faint asterisk next to the moniker. Would it bother you to learn this might not be the pickup’s name?

Probably not, once you learn the real name, which Fiat Chrysler apparently posted on its media site for a brief period of time. Images of swords and armored breastplates usually have that effect.

As posted by the now questionably named JeepScramblerForum.com, a screenshot of the page sent in by a “long-time trusted source” seems to indicate the Scrambler will actually appear as the Gladiator. The pickup, debuting at the L.A. Auto Show later this month, rides on a stretched version of the Wrangler Unlimited frame.

Built in Toledo on the former Wrangler JK assembly line, the Gladiator, if that’s what FCA’s calling it, launches as a 2020 model next year. FCA began retooling the JK line for the upcoming JT in April.

Ever since the departure of the Cherokee-based Comanche in the early 1990s, Jeep purists have begged and pleaded for a new pickup to rise in its wake. With American buyers now firmly allergic to passenger cars, and with the Jeep brand now valued higher than its parent company, the time is right for JT. All it needs is a name and a steep price tag, which the public is no doubt more than willing to pay.

Assuming the accuracy of the forum’s screengrab, it’s not surprising to see Jeep revert to the Gladiator name. While the CJ-8 Scrambler (1981-1986) would be fitting inspiration for a new truck name, given its Wrangler underpinnings, the Wagoneer-based Gladiator pickup (1963-1971) is, frankly, bigger and brawnier. It’s no wonder the automaker used this moniker for its 2005 Wrangler concept truck.

[Image: Brian Williams/Spiedbilde]

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30 Comments on “Scrambler vs Gladiator: It Might be Time to Update Your Jeep Pickup Vocabulary...”


  • avatar
    gasser

    This is probably as close as we’re ever going to get to a Ranger/S-10 replacement from Detroit. They will sell a million of these for all those urban areas where the F150/Silverado is too big to drive easily and their payload size is not critical.

  • avatar
    thelaine

    I very much look forward to the debut. This is a vehicle I will likely buy. A friend bought the new Wrangler and said it is GREATLY improved over the old one in terms of ride, handling and interior and it is every bit as good off road as his old one. I think the Pentastar is now a reliable and adequate engine. There is also, apparently, a FCA “Maxcare” lifetime warranty available for around 3 grand, which he purchased because he drives it every day on road and off and never plans to sell it. I think I would do the same, since with Jeeps, you never know…

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      thelaine,
      I’m hoping this comes to Australia with the V6 diesel. If, a big if FCA can produce a vehicle the quality and reliability of a 70 Series pickup this will sell.

      Live axles front and rear, give it a decent load capacity ie, 3000lbs and tow 8000lbs this will be great for our Outback stations and mines, but, it has to be cheap, quite cheap first up as any Jeep in Australia is considered a gamble, especially in the Outback.

    • 0 avatar
      mikeg216

      You can buy the fca maxcare warranty online through a dealer in Florida for about 2300

  • avatar
    ajla

    Talk is cheap, but basically every person I know wants to buy this.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    I’m not even sure it matters.

    They could call it the Jeep Potato™ and it would sell like ice on the 4th of July.

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus

    I too believe this will do well for Jeep. More power to them.

    I like Gladiator more than Scrambler. I still think FCA could give the Ram 1500 Jeep-like styling and do exactly what GM does with GMC.

  • avatar
    Goatshadow

    Make it a 2 door cab with a stick and I might trade my JKU in for it. That thing up above is too long and I shudder at what the base price will be.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    People will probably call it the Jeep Truck, so they can call it whatever they want it will sell

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      AEV was making these for many years, but each one was a Custom job, where the buyer had to supply the Wrangler and then had it converted to whatever configuration they wanted, all at its own price.

      I don’t know if AEV still exists or if Jeep bought them, or if they just went belly up.

      I do remember that the AEV versions were VERY expensive with some in the range of $50K-$75K, depending on mods and conversion.

      I wonder what this Jeep version will actiually sell for. At a premium, no doubt.

      It’s a Jeeeep thang.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Jeep Truck is actually a very good name. It explains it all.

  • avatar
    loner

    Scrambler sounds like breakfast dish at Denny’s.

    Gladiator sounds like it’s rough and tough and mean.

    Probably a better choice for the people who will invariably install those front fascias with the glowering eyebrows over the headlamps.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      This. I like the Scrambler moniker, but Gladiator probably has more appeal. And it has history, so why not.

      Didn’t TTAC run an article a couple years back about why Jeep shouldn’t build a truck? Seemed to make sense at the time, but boy has the market shifted.

  • avatar
    niccoventryrecoveringbanker

    This is a PUBLICITY STUNT, to create some buzz.

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    Scrambler is Jeep pickup.
    You can enjoy your Gladiator https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=The%20gladiator

  • avatar
    niccoventryrecoveringbanker

    There’s NO WAY in hell, they’ve kept it TOP SECRET for years and then suddenly it gets leaked 3 weeks before, it’s photoshopped BS, could be wrong, but not buying it.

  • avatar
    DedBull

    The Gladiator and its successor the J series were true full size 8ft bed trucks. I hate to see the name watered down to these Wranglers with beds.

    Someday I will have a real Gladiator like my grandfather and dad had, with the indestructible inline 6 and a 3 speed.

  • avatar
    cicero1

    Tagline: Jeep Gladiator – You Shall be Entertained.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    I’m happy to see the Gladiator name return.

  • avatar
    WildcatMatt

    The thing that I think is being missed here is this: At the end of the day, “Scrambler” is only going to have cachet with American Jeep nerds. “Gladiator” will have much greater resonance on the global stage.


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