This edition of JeepNewsNow.com sponsored by:
 
Concept/DemonstrationCamp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Posted by mike on 2006/8/17 8:44:16 (3276) reads

Another great report from Camp Jeep from ScramblerKen...

Another great feature about going to Camp Jeep is the opportunity to chat with the Jeep engineers. I give credit to Jeep as this is risky and gutsy on their part. I can’t think of any other car company that gives the customers direct access to their engineers.

Engineers are an interesting breed, and most are usually passionate about their work. Auto engineers have a tough job dealing with government rules, bean counters, and trying to build what the customer wants. I think we owe a big thanks to these guys and gals for designing Jeep vehicles as versatile and capable, yet easy to modify to let us build pretty much anything we want.

I’m grateful to the Jeep engineers to leave their home and families to spend a few days with us Jeepers. I had a minor issue with my ’05 Wrangler Unlimited, and these guys went out with me and hooked up some diagnostic tools to help analyze the problem. The also were very approachable and willing to answer just about anything.

One of the informal discussions I had was regarding the Gladiator concept (see http://www.allpar.com/model/jeep/gladiator.html) and if we might see this vehicle in the Jeep line-up. Obviously they can not confirm or deny any future plans, but if you listen to what they ask and read between the lines, you get some hints about the future.

As far as the Gladiator, I think there is serious interest, but the engineers hinted they have problems with producing something like this. It is not a technical detail, but more of what the vehicle should be, and who should they market this beast for.

First, the Gladiator concept is not built on the new Wrangler platform. Like the Rescue concept, the vehicle is a full sized truck built on a RAM 2500 or something close to that. Building a full size truck would compete directly with the Dodge line. The Ram is highly mass produced, which keeps the cost down. A full size Gladiator is a bit of a specialty, so would we be willing to pay a premium for this?

Typical Wrangler owners like to take there vehicle’s on Jeep trails. A lot of these trails are designed for short narrow vehicles. Should Jeep build a version of the Gladiator based on the new Wrangler platform? If they do, now we are talking about a small compact truck. Would that sell?

Building a compact truck on the Wrangler platform also has issues. If they use the 4-door wheelbase platform, this probably does not allow much of a pickup bed. If they extend the wheelbase, what happens to break-over angles and other off-roading issues? The engineers hinted at the fun they had with just adding 10 inches to the wheelbase on the TJ to make the 2-door Unlimited. They also had to be careful to not make the tail too long like the old CJ8 where many bobbed the backend when off-roading. The Egyption TJL even has a longer wheelbase, and on some trails this can be a problem.

Basically, the big issue is if Jeep builds a pickup, what would we as consumers want to use it for? If we just want it to be an everyday pickup, why not just buy a Dakota or other truck. If we want it for some trail running, what would we be willing to accept?

The other issue is should it be just a 2-door cab like the Scramblers? This means no room behind the front seats. Try to find a compact truck today that is not at least an extended cab. Should it be a 4-door cab with a very small pickup bed? Should it be a club cab with no back seating, but with the ability to extend the pickup bed into the cab? There are lots of possabilities, and to be profitable, they can not make every variation. Jeep only sells about 100,000 Wranglers a year. How many Gladiator pickups could they sell, and still be profitable? The 2-door Unlimited probably accounts for 50,000 units for its 2 ½ year run. This vehicle was profitable because it was only a minor variation to the existing TJ. To do the Gladiator, they either have to share some platform, or if it is on a unique platform, they will need to sell a lot. Sharing the platform with the Dakota is always a possibility, but would Jeepers really go for it?

Reading between the lines, I don’t think Jeep has any definite plans to build a Gladiator pickup truck on the new Wrangler platform yet. The key word is not ‘yet’. I think we could help Jeep out by letting them know what we would like, how much we would pay, and what we would want to use it for. I know Jeep periodically ‘trolls’ thru web sites like this, so if you have thoughts on this, why don’t you leave a comment. Who knows, maybe something will happen. How many of us thought they would produce the 2-door Unlimited, and now a 4-door Wrangler?

Reader Reactions

The comments are owned by the poster.
We aren't responsible for their content.
You must login or register to post a comment.

Poster Thread
snakesausa
Posted: 2006/8/21 23:07  Updated: 2006/8/21 23:07
Not too shy to talk
Joined: 2006/8/21
From: Tejas (formerly Texas)
Posts: 26
 The Gladiator has been Killed!!!
The Gladiator will not be produced. This is a very sad day!

http://wardsauto.com/ar/jeep_gladiator_production/

Poster Thread
ScramblerKen
Posted: 2006/8/18 9:02  Updated: 2006/8/18 9:02
Just popping in
Joined: 1999/4/15
From:
Posts: 9
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Like most of you guys, I too want to see the Gladiator built. I prefer the idea of a smaller unit based on the new ’07 Wrangler platform. I could imagine using this beast for light trails, and towing. I like the basic rugged looks of the Wrangler, and to me, a pickup truck variant is a natural.

I think having an extended cab, but not a true 4-door cab unit would be best. This would keep the length to a reasonable size, and attract a larger customer base I like the ‘suicide’ doors to make getting things in and out of the back a nice feature, and even if the seat were some simple bench seat that kids and the dog could use would be fine. Basically I can see this as a (2) adult vehicle with some room for kids/cargo in the back.

I also like the idea of having the ability to extend the cargo bed by opening up the cab back area like in the concept model. Basically, I see the Gladiator as a unique personal truck. It does not replace the Ram or Dakota, but instead fills a void that is missing in the Chrysler line. This is a niche vehicle, but once again, this is what Jeep is great at.

I think some of you might appreciate the following table. This is a comparison of the dimensions of various vehicles compared to the Gladiator concept:


Vehicle………………WB….Length…..Width

Gladiator Concept…..138…..203………….77
Ram 1500……………120….207………….80
Ram Quad……………160…..247…………80
07 Wrangler Unlim….116….173…………74
06 TJ…………………93…..155………….67
Jeep Commander……109…..188………..89

Poster Thread
RUBICON
Posted: 2006/8/18 9:41  Updated: 2006/8/18 9:45
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/13
From:
Posts: 377
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
DCX:

* Build a Gladiator based off the JKL architecture with small extended cab, 6' bed, side-mounted spare. Market it by pointing back to the Willys pickup of the 1950's.
*Redesign the Liberty to a more luxury-trimmed off-roader with a boxy look.
* Facelift the Grand Cherokee to look more like the Bluetec concept.
* Offer a 3.2L Bluetec hydraulic hybrid engine option for the KK, WK, and XK. Offer a next-generation Cummins diesel option for the JK, JKL, and Gladiator. Offer a small 2.0L diesel option for the MK49 and MK74.
* After a couple years of production, kill off the Compass or redesign the Compass to have the beefier look of the original concept. Include a heavy duty suspension and reinforced body that is capable of desert racing.
* Keep the JK lineup fresh by introducing a two-door long-tub Scrambler edition.
* Work with aftermarket suppliers to ensure more availability of lift kits, armor, bumpers, winches, etc. for ALL Jeep vehicles.

Poster Thread
Jeepin
Posted: 2006/8/18 11:31  Updated: 2006/8/18 11:31
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/11/28
From: TX
Posts: 190
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Just to clarify some of those numbers in that table...

The numbers listed for the Ram 1500 are for a regular cab shortbed truck.

The numbers listed for the quad cab are for a 4-dr LONG bed truck (same dimensions as the MegaCab).

Also, here are some more for comparison. Notice that the Dakota, Tacoma, and Frontier all use the same chassis for their 2-dr and 4-dr models.


Vehicle.......................WB....Length...Width

Dakota clubcab................131....219.....74,3
Dakota quadcab................131....219.....74.3
Tacoma extendcab..............128....208.....74.6
Tacoma quadcab shortbed.......128....208.....74.6
Nissan Frontier kingcab.......126....205.5...72.8
Nissan Frontier crewcab.......126....205.5...72.8

Poster Thread
loner
Posted: 2006/8/17 20:53  Updated: 2006/8/17 20:53
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2006/2/24
From:
Posts: 71
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Hey Markh. My first two vehicles that I owned for 10 years were a CJ-7 and a Cherokee. After both rusted into the ground( A statement of salty winters and hard off road use NOT a dig on Jeep) and the Cherokee was no longer available I bought a Tacoma. I wanted a live axle Jeep bigger than a TJ but nothing existed. The Taco is a great truck and before they made it bigger and uglier recently was one of the only real off roaders around besides Jeep. So maybe you could turn the jingoistic knob down a little:)

I have been waiting for Jeep to make something like the XJ but as time goes on I realize I really am hooked on pickups now and a truck with a cap suits my needs better than an suv. But I wanna Jeep and straight axles dammit! So I keep waiting for the Gladiator but I would probably jump on an Unlimited if they put a diesel in it.

There is no way that prototype Gladiaitor is based on a ram 2500 it is way too narrow. I would have absolutley no interest in a Gladiator based on the Ram. What is the point? If I wanted a Full size P/U I would just buy a Ram. Enough of this slapping some new plastic on something and selling it as a sister vehicle. It only further dilutes product identity. Fewer makes more models is what they should be doing. Leave out expandable bed. That is a gimmick that adds so much expense and no one uses. I love regular cabs but admit I am in a minority and it would have to be at least an extended cab. My .02

Poster Thread
moochorBB
Posted: 2006/8/18 8:14  Updated: 2006/8/18 8:14
Just popping in
Joined: 2006/7/8
From:
Posts: 3
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
loner you may be in the minority but i am with you. regular cabs are good as long as there is a little bit of room behind the seat.

Poster Thread
cshontz
Posted: 2006/8/17 17:48  Updated: 2006/8/17 17:49
Not too shy to talk
Joined: 2005/10/18
From:
Posts: 23
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
You take the Unlimited platform, make it a two-door, invent a custom "cab top" for it, and "ruggedize" the bed area somehow. Not quite as cool as a legitimate pickup, but you achieve the same result with minimal work.

EDIT: I mean, that's a maybe idea. I am hitting the bottle right now, so ... I dunno.

Poster Thread
jeffsivert
Posted: 2006/8/17 17:38  Updated: 2006/8/17 17:38
Just popping in
Joined: 2006/6/27
From:
Posts: 5
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
When the concept Gladiator initially came out I asked my local Jeep dealer's manager when we would see such a truck in the Jeep line up. He stated that due to direct competition to the dakota, DC would not be building such a vehicle.

Who buys dakota's? My elderly 74 year old uncle thats who. I would not buy a dakota based on looks alone. Forget the fact that they seem to be under powered for a vehicle of that weight. (hear say)

Build it and they will come.

Poster Thread
AferVentus
Posted: 2006/8/17 17:31  Updated: 2006/8/17 17:31
Quite a regular
Joined: 2006/5/3
From: Minnesota
Posts: 42
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Why not create it like the Wrangler with the tops? Have it with an optional permanant top, a hard top, or a soft top. Then you could say it is the only covertable truck.

Poster Thread
jpsmith
Posted: 2006/8/17 17:17  Updated: 2006/8/17 17:17
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2006/7/25
From:
Posts: 97
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
If the Gladiator were at all similar to the concept, I would absolutely buy one. I need a pickup, but I've actually been holding off on buying a new one in hopes that an '08 or '09 Gladiator would be announced. I find myself drooling over the pictures of the Gladiator concept quite often.

Poster Thread
cshontz
Posted: 2006/8/17 16:51  Updated: 2006/8/17 16:51
Not too shy to talk
Joined: 2005/10/18
From:
Posts: 23
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Build with dimensions similar to the Brute. Make it a two-seater, and focus on the vehicle's ability to carry stuff, as opposed to carrying people. Put a little more emphasis on utility, and maintain good off-road ability. Make front half of platform identical to JK, and innovate behind the B-pillar. For extra appeal, drop in a diesel.

And there you have a unique 1/4-ton pickup that does not have any direct competition in the market.

I'm no marketing expert, DC - however I am a forum troll, and all I ever hear is "Are they going to build the Gladiator?" and "When are they going to build the Gladiator?" - Do it for the people. Do this, and restore the Jeep heritage.

Poster Thread
bkcurtis
Posted: 2006/8/17 15:00  Updated: 2006/8/17 15:00
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/10/8
From: NW Indiana, USA
Posts: 154
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
It seems to me that when the Gladiator was first introduced, it was mentioned that it would be built on the Dakota platform.

Things can and do change, but I haven't seen anything that says different.

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2006/8/17 14:26  Updated: 2006/8/17 14:26
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 DCX look!

Poster Thread
Jeepin
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:46  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:49
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/11/28
From: TX
Posts: 190
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Where did Scrambler Ken get that bogus info about the Gladiator being built off the Ram platform and being a 'fullsize' truck. The Gladiator is no more a fullsize truck than the JK is a fullsize SUV. The Gladiator may be built on a Ram chassis (I would guess the Dakota more realistically), but the body is essentially a JK front half, and it's not running a Ram engine, trans, t'case, or axles.

I've been to CampJeeps before and attended the "engineering" round tables which were mostly made up of marketing people, who really didn't know very much IMHO. At CampJeep2002 the "engineers" in the Wrangler Roundtable asked us what kind of future vehicles we'd like to see. I spoke up and said they should build something like the Dakar. I was met with a blank stare by the "engineer" as they asked, "What's that?"... despite the fact that the Dakar concept was sitting in the World of Jeep tent about 50' from our round table.

Look at this pic and tell me if that looks like a fullsize truck to you... Unless the guy on the left is a giant.

http://jeepin.com/news/gladiator/gladiator08.jpg

I own a Dodge Ram and I can tell that it is WAY bigger than the Gladiator in every dimension.

In concept form, the Gladiator would compete directly against the likes of the Tacoma, Frontier, and Dakota, probably moreso with the Tacoma and Frontier as the Gladiator would probably be seen as more of an 'offroad' truck like the Toyota and Nissan and not so much of a 'work' truck like the Dodge Dakota. Personally I think the Dakota is ugly and if I was in the market for a midsize truck I definitely wouldn't be looking at anything from DCX, I'd be looking at Toyota and Nissan. If DCX built a Gladiator though, that would be my #1 choice, and I know it would be for a lot of other people too.

Ever since the first pics of the Gladiator came out, I've gotten emails from people asking when it would be available, or how much it would cost and where/when could they buy one. Of course, I got the same questions about the Rescue too. I definitely think the Gladiator would sell, and sell well.

I disagree with MarkH about the need for a 4-dr model. I absolutely think a 4-dr version would be needed for this vehicle to be a success. Maybe it's just where I live, but NO BODY has a 2-dr truck here. They're all 4-drs, whether it's an F350 dually or a Chevy Colorado, people want the extra room for people and gear. Shoot, we bought a Megacab because it was the biggest 4-dr truck on the market short of going to a commercial chassis truck. Even the guys with Tacomas and Frontiers all have 4-dr trucks here.

A quad-cab Tacoma short bed has a wheelbase of just under 128", a full 10" SHORTER than the Gladiator's wheelbase, so I don't see why DCX couldn't use a single chassis and build both an extend-cab "longbed" and a quad-cab "shortbed" truck. Reuse all the interior, drivetrain, and electronics from the JK, and other than cab, rear doors, bed, and frame, there wouldn't be many unique components going into a production Gladiator.

IMO it would be a huge mistake for DCX NOT to build the Gladiator.

Poster Thread
mwigant
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:14  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:14
Just popping in
Joined: 2006/8/17
From:
Posts: 2
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Built on the JK platform, wouldn't this be like a Tacoma for Jeepers and domestic brand buyers? I would like to see the domestics get serious about the off-road truck market and I don't mean 6000 pound monsters. The Dakota, S-10, and Ranger are no competition for the Tacoma and Frontier in factory trim.

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:21  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:21
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Tacoma? Frontier?
No Jeep or domestic faithfuls even shop for those. You're on the wrong forum, Hirohito!

Poster Thread
Jeepin
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:54  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:54
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/11/28
From: TX
Posts: 190
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
they would if they wanted a midsize truck with any kind of real offroad capability. If we were talking fullsize trucks, then sure, I'd agree with you because while Toy and Nissan have some pretty decent 1/2-tons (well, the upcoming completely revised Tundra is anyway), they have nothing (yet) to complete in the heavy-duty market. But in the midsize offroad market, domestics simply can't compete with the imports, unless you're talking about building a prerunner Ranger.

People who buy Jeeps are probably closer to those that buy Tacomas than they are those that buy Dakotas.

Poster Thread
Brian_R
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:02  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:02
Quite a regular
Joined: 2005/11/28
From:
Posts: 47
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
I think the Jeep Faithful would definitely accept something based off of the 2500 or Power Wagon platform, especially if it gets enough oomph to be a true tow rig for their wrangler / tj / cj. And I would much rather take a Gladiator that might be a little long for a trail that was originally designed for a short CJ, instead of a non-trail rated Compass that can't go anywhere and does not a thing.

Poster Thread
RUBICON
Posted: 2006/8/17 10:45  Updated: 2006/8/17 10:45
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/13
From:
Posts: 377
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Good thoughtful input MarkH, but a couple things to note...the Scrambler was not really a pickup. It was an extended length Wrangler (one big tub, no seperate bed). I think if they are going to build a Scrambler then build it on the JKL frame. I am not opposed to this idea and it wouldn't be too hard a business proposition as this would only require a different tub and share all the other parts out of the JK/JKL parts bins.

But the Gladiator (as the name's heritage suggests) is a real pickup. It borrows heavily on the idea of the Willys pickup which is a fairly compact but quite heavy duty truck. I didn't ever realize that the Gladiator was based of the RAM 2500 chassis until this article.

So here is an idea... why not introduce a true diesel-powered Gladiator pickup (much like the concept) for 2008. Then ditch the Compass from the lineup (focus on making the Patriot a hot seller with good aftermarket support) and make a JKL-based Scrambler.

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2006/8/17 11:05  Updated: 2006/8/17 11:16
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
the Scrambler was not really a pickup. It was an extended length Wrangler (one big tub, no seperate bed).


I know what you mean (it was based off the "CJ-7", BTW...) but it was used by a lot of Jeepers as a utility pickup. I think DCX's main concern is marketability --what will sell. A direct competitor to the RAM does not seem like a viable option, and is a hard business case to make for the likely low volume. But I DO like the concept.

I think a solid business case can be made for a JK Scrambler, and I think they can make it heavy-duty enough for the weekend handy-guy, say a 1000# payload with the right springs.

BTW, it's too soon to ditch the Compass (maybe in '12) & too late to ditch the new Liberty... But I know what you mean...

Poster Thread
RUBICON
Posted: 2006/8/17 12:52  Updated: 2006/8/17 12:52
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/13
From:
Posts: 377
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
Well, I am expecting the next-generation Liberty will be a lot better than the current generation. No, it will not be a Cherokee replacement (the new Wrangler Unlimited is the closest we will probably see) but I think the new box design will be more like the Commander (which I obviously like as I am awaiting delivery on my 2007 right now).

The Compass could get killed off to save face after a couple of years if the Patriot is more successful (which it no doubt will be). A Scrambler version could be introduced after that (around 2009 or 2010) as something to keep the JK/JKL lineup fresh.

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2006/8/17 10:26  Updated: 2006/8/17 10:48
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 Future Gladiator?
Mike- Thanx for the opportunity to put our $0.02 in! Since most of the people who post to this site are diehard Jeep fans with a LOT of Jeep history under their belts, hopefully the DCX engineers DO listen to the collective advice on your website... After all, we are loyal customers

1) I can't see a lot of Jeepers wanting a large (more expensive) Gladiator based on the RAM platform. Yeah, the concept vehicle looks cool, but it would require a whole different drivetrain than the JK/JKL and probably get a lot worse mpg and --like you say-- not be sold in the volumes necessary for its justification. Besides, the new JK/JKL platforms are already bigger than old TJ & YJ & CJ were. NIX the RAM platform idea right off the bat.

2) Most Jeepers, I predict want a "shared" platform with the new JK/JKL (as the CJ-8s had with CJ-7s) so that most of the drivetrain & aftermarket parts are interchangeable and easily modified --that's very important. Keep it simple! That also keeps it less expensive and gives DCX the necessary justification for a lower volume variant alongside the JK/JKL.

3) I don't see the need for a full 4-dr club cab either. The length of that with a pick-up bed would be enormous & useless on the trails. 2-drs with a little space behind the seat is just fine. Given that scenario, you don't even need the little half-doors, and DCX can keep the cost & weight down. They might even go with a couple folding sideways facing "jump seats" (like Ford Ranger '90s ext-cabs had) but if those extra 2-halfdoors are added, the cost will rise. I'd rather see the cost & weight kept low and the design utilitarian & simple.

4) As far as usability on the trail, it's always a compromise. I'd recommend DCX look at the already available aftermarket Scrambler-type models available from AEV-conversions (and others). They seem well-proportioned and are based off the TJ platform. If they do a similar conversion to a JK/JKL, lift the body a couple inches, move the rear axle far enough back & add 31-32" stock tire size, I think the resultant departure & breakover angles will be adequate.

Keep it priced low & keep it utilitarian & functional. Save the gizmos, a new "Scrambler" should be designed as a "weekend work truck" that will be able to haul some stuff on & off trail. Simple, right? Hey, DCX! Would you rather roll the dice and eke out 10,000units/yr on a brand-new, large, costly, heavy-modified, poor-mpg, RAM-based SUV platform that will inevitably be canceled due to fuel costs & poor sales in a few years? Or sell a steady 25,000units/yr on a shared, cost-effective, CAFE-compliant JK/JKL platform that will endure for at least a decade? Aim the design for a $22K JK Scrambler, not a $35K Avalanche-clone, please! Reality check, guys!

Poster Thread
RUBICON
Posted: 2006/8/17 9:27  Updated: 2006/8/17 9:29
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/13
From:
Posts: 377
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
As far as who to market this vehicle too... I don't think marketing would be a problem. If built, and if it still retained the same rugged look as the concept, it will sell.

I do not think it needs to be built on the Wrangler platform. I don't believe either the Willys Wagon or the J-series pickups were based on a CJ platform.

If the concept was based off the RAM 2500 then why not build the production one on the same line as the Dodge RAM Power Wagon. It could share many of the same parts (4.56 gear ratios, lockers, disconnecting sway bar, solid front and rear axles, 12,000lb. winch) and perhaps could be powered by a next generation diesel engine with either auto (for those who need it as a tow vehicle) or manual transmissions options. I would say offer it as an extended cab (like the concept) with a 6' bed with of course the side-mounted spare.

The cost of such a vehicle is obviously going to be a little more than a Rubicon. I think everyone knows, to make this vehicle what it should really be, it is going to cost money. There is no point in making stripped down versions of this vehicle. As soon as it loses it's rugged off-road stance to save some money on tires, the whole point is lost.

Poster Thread
westshady
Posted: 2006/8/18 10:28  Updated: 2006/8/18 10:28
Just popping in
Joined: 2006/1/25
From: Newark, DE
Posts: 9
 Re: Camp Jeep – Gladiator in the Future?
So I think the answer is simply, like a previous poster said, "If you build it, they will buy!" but change it a bit first.

A. Keep it simple. The Gladiator is a throwback to the Willy's Pickup but the concept was built as true Jeep rendition of the AEV Brute and the incredible response it received at SEMA, so well built people thought it was a production vehicle, heck why shouldn't they, it was in the DCX display and I am sure funded by them as well. A Jeep Pickup leaning more towards the Brute is the way to go.

B. Make it a Jeep. We don't need a small RAM pickup with a Jeep badge, that is almost more of an insult to Jeep consumers than the Compass.

C. Go with what you know. Make the Gladiator or JK Scrambler or whatever you choose to call it a sister vehicle, if it must be called that maybe brother vehicle is more fitting, of the JK 4-Door Unlimited. This will save costs, as well as fuel the after-market by keeping the same suspension dimensions and front cab configuration the same. This will also mean shorter time to market since the suspension and chasis is already engineered.

D. It should look like a Jeep. Not like a Ram pickup with a seven slot grill. Keep the removable top of the JK. Envision this, cut off and enclose the JKL behind the front seats at the front of the rear seat right at the front of the rear door seams adding maybe 4 inches to this area. Add Tacoma-like flip jump seats, and take the Freedom Top and cut down the rear section of the 2 door top to 1/3 its size and keep the removable front sections over the driver and passenger, again keeping costs down. Maintain a front cab roll bar for topless safety.
Slap a simple Brute sized, Tacoma-like composite bed on making it about 6 to 10 inches longer than the JKL body and slope up the rear chin and bumper of the bed to maintain departure angles.

E. Pricing is important. Offer the same trim lines as the JKL and keep the price for Rubicon version in line with the JKL Rubicon.

F. What does it take? With the concept described here the JK Scrambler/Brute/Gladiator would share everything with the JK from the dash foward, as well as doors, front seats and front interior components, part of the hard top and part of the roll bar. The only thing that would require enginnering would be the body tub from firewall back, the rear interior seating and storage, the rear section of the Freedom Top, I am thinking rear sliding window too, the pickup bed and bumpers and probably some adjustments to the rear shock valving. I would have to think the suspension geometry wouldn't even need that much adjustment because you would be trading rear seats, roll bar and top for a longer body/bed and with a composite pickup bed it might actually end up being lighter in the rear than the JKL.

Well that's my vision, and what I would like to see produced.
Main Menu
JeepNewsNow Everywhere
Login
Username:

Password:


Lost Password?

Register now!
Jeep Classifieds
Syndication - RSS
Add Jeep News Headlines to your site for free!

Display the latest Jeep news headlines on your Web site using our RSS 2.0 news feed!

RSS 2.0

Or, if you prefer, an even easier way of putting the headlines on your Web site is to utilize our free, JavaScript-based headlines. Check them out!
Who's Online
7 user(s) are online (1 user(s) are browsing News)

Members: 0
Guests: 7

more...
Advertisements
mike's totally free jeep news now is designed and maintained by AnelloConsulting.com
Copyright © 1998-2010 mike's totally free jeep news now
Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Advertising Info