Jeep released the Gladiator, its first pickup truck in years, in the spring of 2019. Now, as various automakers roll out environmentally-friendly electric trucks, many 4×4 fans wonder if we’ll get an electric Jeep Gladiator. The truth is it’s just a matter of time before we get an electric Gladiator. But the question is: will it be based on the existing Jeep Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid, Jeep’s all-electric concept vehicle, or share technology with other Stellantis vehicles such as the new Ram 1500 EV?
When will the Jeep Gladiator get 4xe?
Jeep announced it plans to offer an electrified version of each of its vehicles by 2025. But the Gladiator 4xe plug-in hybrid’s release is rumored to be delayed until 2024, so the Gladiator will likely be one of the last Jeep EVs launched.
The first Gladiator was a 2020 model, but Jeep released it in the spring of 2019. The unique-looking, capable pickup truck was an instant sensation. The Gladiator is available in some of the same trims as the Wrangler: the Sport, Sport S, Willys, and Willys Sport. You can also order a Jeep Gladiator in the high-end High Altitude trim. But instead of the Wrangler’s top-end Sahara trim, the most luxurious Gladiator is the Overland.
The Gladiator’s two top performance trims are the Rubicon (a low-speed rock-crawler, similar to the Wrangler) and a Gladiator-only Mojave trim. The Gladiator Mojave is a high-speed desert racer, similar to the Ford F-150 Raptor and Bronco Raptor.
The Jeep Wrangler’s newest top trims are based on unique powertrains: The Wrangler Rubicon 392 features the 392 cubic-inch (6.4-liter) HEMI V8. The Jeep Wrangler 4xe is a plug-in hybrid that’s nearly as powerful as the 392, making 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. With the Gladiator selling well, it makes sense that Jeep’s next trim of its truck would be one or both of these drivetrains.
My colleague Allison Barfield even covered Jeep’s teaser images of a Gladiator fit with the 4xe’s signature blue tow hooks. Then an inside source revealed that Jeep pushed the Gladiator 4xe back to 2024.
Will Jeep make an EV?
Jeep has already released an electric Wrangler concept SUV. The Jeep Magneto is a two-door Wrangler with a stretched wheelbase, 40-inch tires, and a single electric motor with 850 lb-ft of torque.
The latest tune of the Magneto is the Magneto 2.0. Its motor is a custom axial-flux unit with a red line of 5,250 rpms. Therefore, Jeep’s paired it with a six-speed manual, making the Magneto 2.0 an EV with a very “Jeep” personality.
All of the Magneto’s torque is available at zero rpm. What’s more, Jeep dropped its first gear ratio from 5.13 to 3.36, making it one of the most capable rock-crawlers around.
Will Jeep make an EV truck?
Stellantis’ first EV truck is on its way: the Ram 1500 EV. Eventually, Jeep may also offer a full battery-electric Gladiator as well. Perhaps the two trucks will share some technology, but they will also be very different.
The first images of the Ram 1500 EV show a futuristic truck with advanced technology, such as independent rear suspension. Solid axles, both front and rear, give the Gladiator much of its distinct personality. Someday, these axles may house electric engines, but it’s unlikely the Gladiator will get the Ram 1500 EV’s entire drivetrain.
What a future Jeep EV might borrow from the Ram 1500 EV is a gasoline-powered “range extender” or bed-mounted generator. This would make long overland journeys between charging stations possible.
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