Car Review: Jeep Gladiator Mojave takes off-roading serious

Trucks are huge business and Jeep took its time to introduce its version of the midsize vehicle. The Gladiator is a Swiss Army knife in the truck world. How many trucks can play convertible, serious off-roader and workhorse all in one stylish wrapper? The latest version of the Jeep Gladiator, the Mojave, adds new suspension hardware for an improved performance. New specialized Fox shocks allow the Gladiator to tackle rough terrain with confidence. If you fancy desert racing, this is your rig. The new setup also pays dividends on the street, with a better-dampened ride over bumps. A V6 engine and optional eight speed automatic is a good combo for most drivers. However, being a Jeep, there are multiple engine and transmission combos to choose.

The Gladiator certainly is one cool looking truck, with the rugged look of a Wrangler, but with a truck bed on the back. The Mojave looks like its ready to play hard without the need for a road with 33-inch tires. If you look closely, those Fox shocks peek out for the world to see. This is also a workable truck, but I do wish that the bed was a bit deeper. It seems shallow compared to others.

Inside, the Gladiator Mojave comes with heated leather seats and an 8.4-inch touchscreen with navigation. No roughing it here. Where the Jeep stands out is the amount of controls for the trick off-road system. It starts with the familiar shifter for two-wheel drive to four-wheel drive, then there are multiple buttons and switches to get the right setup for the conditions at hand. Drivers who are unfamiliar with Jeeps might have a problem at first finding the window switches located on the center dash as you can remove the doors in this truck.

Cost: $50,000; as tested $63,355

MPG: 17 MPG City; 22 MPG Highway (sticker). I managed 17.2 mpg in 208 miles of mixed driving.

Options: $195 Hydro Blue Pearl-coat paint; $350 trailer tow package; $1,695 8.4-inch radio & premium audio group with NAV; $2,295 dual top group; $995 cold weather group; $1,045 premium LED lighting group; $295 auxiliary switch group; $555 hardtop headliner; $2,000 8-speed automatic transmission; $595 roll-up tonneau cover; $1,050 heavy-duty rock slider with step assist; $295 wireless Bluetooth speaker; $495 spray-in bed liner.

Safety:  Electronic roll mitigation; ParkSense rear park assist system; adaptive cruise control with stop; blind spot and cross path detection; advanced brake assist; full speed forward collision warn plus.

Things to know: Jeep’s Gladiator Mojave is the truck that’s ready to tackle dirt trails, tow and haul your gear with ease. But unlike other pickups, you can take the top and doors off to be, well, a Jeep.


  • Most capable version of the Jeep Gladiator for now.
  • Big on style with rugged looks that will draw attention.
  • Many trim levels and options to please most buyers.


  • Cost of Gladiator Mojave is high for a midsize truck.
  • Fuel economy isn’t very good even for a truck.
  • Some might find it rough and rugged with the soft top in place.

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