2020 Jeep Gladiator
The 2020 Jeep Gladiator is the second year of production for the recently revived Jeep midsize pickup. Last sold in 1992 as the Commanche, the 2020 Gladiator has come a long way. With similar styling to its JL brother, the Gladiator uses the same 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine. Variable valve technology (VVT) has this iteration of Gladiator producing 280 horsepower, routed through a 6-speed Aisin manual transmission or an 8-speed ZF automatic. Capable 4-wheel drive, good ground clearance and a 5-ft box make the 2020 Gladiator a great all-around machine.
Keeping Cargo Dry
Again, a pickup-style box on the back of a Jeep product hasn't been seen since 1992. Having an open truck bed provides so much flexibility in terms of the size and weight of cargo that can be carried. For 2020, the Gladiator can haul up to 1770 lbs of payload in its 5-foot box. The one downside to this utility, however, is the fact that there is no protection from weather or prying eyes. This issue is neatly solved by the installation of an aftermarket bed cover. Soft covers are made with aluminum framing covered with a heavy-duty waterproof vinyl or polyester fabric, offered in a roll-up or tri-fold style. Hard covers utilize aluminum slats in a fold-up design, making for a significantly more rigid cover. More recently however, there are aftermarket manufacturers offering a hard bed cover for the 2020 Gladiator but with a soft cover look. This 'hybrid' type of cover typically features a fabric exterior but the frame underneath is more substantial and complete as compared to a regular soft bed cover. Rarely needing drilling for installation, JT Gladiator tonneau systems can mount flush with the bed or slightly atop the bed rails (manufacturer specific).
Open Air Security
Like the JL, Jeep has engineered the JT Gladiator to allow owners to remove the doors, roof and windshield, giving a one-of-a-kind safari-like driving experience. For those Gladiator owners that like the idea of open-air driving but wish for a little more added security, consider a set of Gladiator adventure doors. The idea of an adventure door is to give Gladiators an open-air driving experience without major sacrifice to safety. A set of these doors would be especially beneficial to JTs that are out prowling the trails. Adventure doors will:
- Enable safari-like open air driving
- Give good visibility when maneuvering
- Provide a secure barrier to keep occupants inside the vehicle
Made from tubular and plate steel with a thick, textured powder coat finish, adventure doors are a minimalist structure that provide a high-strength barrier without majorly disrupting the visibility or open air feeling of driving without the doors at all.
Pickup Truck Essentials
For any Gladiator that intends to haul or go off-road, there a couple of essential items that should always be in the back of the truck. Keeping a 'first-aid kit' consisting of properrecovery gear and tie-downs ensures you'll be able to get yourself out of a jam. First and foremost, a strong and long recovery strap is the best friend of all JT Gladiator owners. A good strap is made from heavy-duty nylon and is double-stitched, ideally looped at both ends. Longer is generally better, as you never know in what orientation or from what distance you'll need to perform a recovery. With this in mind, 30-ft is a good place to start. And if you were to go bigger, you can always double up if it turns out to be too long. In terms of load capacity, again, bigger is always better. A 2020 Jeep Gladiator weighs about 5000 lbs. However, pulling out a Gladiator that is stuck is going to need a lot more force to get it unstuck. Therefore a recovery strap should always be at least double the GVWR of what you are intending to pull.