View Photos of the 2021 Jeep Gladiator EcoDiesel

2021 jeep gladiator rubicon

Jeep

Jeep’s Gladiator pickup loses some refinement and towing capacity in its new-for-2021 diesel conversion, but its enhanced fuel economy and range will take you deeper into the wilderness.

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Exterior changes for the Gladiator EcoDiesel are limited to small badge on its tailgate. Its exhaust also moves from the left to the right side of the truck.

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As it is in the Wrangler Unlimited, the turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 is rated for 260 horsepower at 3600 rpm and 442 pound-feet of torque at just 1400 rpm.

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Due to the cooling restrictions of Jeep’s signature seven-slot grille, the diesel drops the Gladiator’s tow rating from 7650 pounds to 6500.

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For durability, the diesel is only paired with the Gladiator’s more robust ZF 8HP75 eight-speed automatic transmission and the Rubicon model’s tougher Dana 44 axles with 3.73:1 gears.

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The EcoDiesel powertrain adds about 400 pounds to the Gladiator, which dictated a retuning of its suspension. Ride quality and off-road ability don’t suffer, however.

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The EcoDiesel is noisier than the standard gas V-6. To reduce noise, Jeep adds sound-deadening material on the hot side of the firewall and foam on the backside of the infotainment screen.

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The diesel’s greater fuel economy and range are its greatest selling points. The EPA gives it a 24-mpg combined estimate, and its potential highway range is more than 500 miles.

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Jeep anticipates 15 percent of Gladiator buyers will choose the truck’s new Ecodiesel V-6, which costs an additional $4000 and requires the $2000 automatic transmission option.

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With so much bottom-end torque, our Rubicon test vehicle chugged up steep hills and over frame-twisting obstacles with the EcoDiesel lumbering along at less than 2500 rpm.

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2021 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon

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2021 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon

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2021 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon

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