Diesel Power Predictably Lands in the Jeep Gladiator

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
diesel power predictably lands in the jeep gladiator

There’s plenty of things Americans can’t get their hands on these days — hand sanitizer, inexpensive front-drive coupes, and a predictable future, to name a few — but those dreaming of the chance to drive a four-door convertible pickup powered by a compression-ignition engine haven’t long to wait before seeing their wish granted.

As many assumed Jeep would, the off-road brand is adding the 3.0-liter diesel V6 to its Gladiator engine roster for 2021.

Appearing in the Wrangler Unlimited for 2020, the 3.0L EcoDiesel returns improved fuel economy without the trade-off of clatter and smoke seen with diesels of yore. In the four-door Wrangler, the 260-horse, 442 lb-ft EcoDiesel has earned a fair bit of praise for both its pull and efficiency.

“Before we introduced Gladiator, one of the most common questions consumers asked us was, ‘Will you please offer a Jeep truck?,’ followed closely by, ‘Will it be offered with a diesel engine?’” said Jim Morrison, Jeep’s hard-rocking North American brand head, in a statement. “While we know the answer to the first question, I’m pleased to answer the second with a resounding, ‘Yes!’.”

Appearing this winter, the 3.0L, mated only to an eight-speed automatic, greets buyers of the base Gladiator Sport, mid-range Overland, and uplevel Rubicon in the third quarter of 2020. Jeep’s already taking orders.

Pricing wasn’t forthcoming on Friday, though the diesel engine option carries a $4,000 price tag for buyers of the Wrangler Unlimited.

[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

Join the conversation
2 of 9 comments
  • Karonetwentyc Karonetwentyc on Jul 11, 2020

    Can I get it in 2-door, extended (not crew) cab, medium-wheelbase form, with a long bed? No? Oh, OK. Guess you just sunk yourselves in the midsize truck stakes as far as I'm concerned. Hey, Jeep - things like this are why I'm not likely to be a repeat buyer. You'd figured it out with the diesel MJ Comanche 30-plus years ago, so it's clearly within your capabilities to do it again. But you're not. I realise that you don't care because you're now a Lifestyle Brand as opposed to a marque, and some dudebro with the ability to find the nearest 4 Wheel Parts to the dealership he's going to drive this out of is your target buyer, but you could at least throw us a bone. Signed, Your friendly local KJ CRD owner looking for a decent upgrade path.

  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Jul 11, 2020

    The Gladiator is overpriced but that is typical of the entire Wrangler platform. The Gladiator costs as much as a PowerWagon. A Colorado is significantly lower priced.

  • Urlik My online research seems to indicate it’s an issue with the retaining clips failing and allowing the valve spring retainers to come out. This results in the valve dropping into the cylinder.
  • EBFlex Typical Ford. For those keeping track, Ford is up to 44 recalls for the year. Number one recalled manufacturer (yet again) by a wide margin.
  • Lorie Did they completely forget the damn 2.0 ecoboosts that have the class action lawsuit? Guess those of us that had to pay out of pocket for an engine replacement for a fail at 76k miles are out of luck? I will never buy a Ford again.
  • Mncarguy I remember when the Golf came out and all the car magazines raved about it. I bought an early one in the mid level trim, brown with a beige vinyl interior and a stick. I must have blocked out a lot about that car, because the only thing I remember is one day with my wife and infant in the car, the brakes went out! I could use the parking brake and made it home. There must have been other issues (beside an awful dealer who felt like they were doing you a favor even letting you come in for service) because I swore I'd never buy a VW again. I did get a new Beetle and later a Passat. That's another story!
  • Oberkanone The Chrysler - Plymouth - Dodge Neon's racing successes - SCCA and elsewhere (allpar.com)Inexpensive racing.