Bronco pickup? Gladiator shows what will happen...

Rick Astley

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I've been thinking about the Gladiator more and more these days, especially after seeing three different Gladiator RUBICON's at Yellowstone National Park last summer (all optioned to the max, beautiful clean paint, really cute matching luggage in each, no hint of their owners wanting to drive their $65K toys off the blacktop) and what that class of vehicle really brings to the JEEP brand.
  • Is it a truck? If it is, it's a really poor choice as a truck
  • Is it a off road beast? It has the kit, but again, it's form factor makes it a really poor choice
  • Does it still drive like a JEEP (and all the negative that implies on-road)? Yea!
  • Is the Gladiator simply another Ridgeline with a very select audience and unable to turn a profit even with $20K of options tarting it up? Probably
TTAC followed up my vehicular wanderings with this article today and it's pointed yet mostly unopinionated (until you get to the comments).

https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2020/11/2020-jeep-gladiator-sport-s-review-poised-for-urban-life/

Does Bronco "need" to follow suit with an even smaller-market vehicle that isn't great off road, isn't great as a truck, and looks as cumbersome as the Gladiator? I would argue there is no business reason to do so. Covid has cost every manufacturer billions, dumping resources into these low-yield makes doesn't make sense. Ranger is a perfectly capable midsize truck, Maverick is rumored to be close to production for small truck, and Bronco looks to be more than capable of giving the fight to Jeep off-road (not in outright capability, but in that entry/mid-market basis) and with the pencil pushers.
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texasgreazer

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I wouldn't say they "need" to, but Jeep only hurt themselves with the Gladiator's off road ability by making chassis changes. As far as I know (but I'm not a jeep expert) the old Scrambler was much more Wrangler than the Gladiator is.

Neither were ever ideal as "trucks", but I'm guessing the Scrambler's abilities were much more inline also.

Ford has a chance to do it right by keeping the mechanicals the same. IMHO, the body shouldn't even change, only the roof. Don't try to hide a 35" tire underneath.

Literally--sell me a Bronco WITH a bed, not a completely redesigned Bronco truck.
 

Gamecock

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The Gladiator is hideous...and it sucks off road because of the awful wheelbase / break-over. I think it will dry up and stop selling, and I agree that Ford shouldn't go down that trail. Gladiator has no redeeming qualities compared to a regular Rubi, or to a pickup.
 

BroncoJay

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Please Ford stay away from the bronco pick up
Be different, be bold and stick to just making kick ass, off roading rig... perfect it, add options, make the warthog but run away from a Frankenstein-truck that Jeep makes
 

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This is all Jeep had to do. Nothing fancy, and nothing 4-door.

If Jeep said they'd build this, I'd drop the Bronco. Yes, it's that serious, and that much of a total screwup on Jeeps part.

jeep-j6-24.jpg


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BroncoJay

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This is all Jeep had to do. Nothing fancy, and nothing 4-door.

If Jeep said they'd build this, I'd drop the Bronco. Yes, it's that serious, and that much of a total screwup on Jeeps part.

View attachment 59241
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To me that is just an argument on 2 door vs 4 door...
This is basically the same concept The gladiator already is, you just basically removed the 4 door option...
If this is whatcha dig - cool..
 

MGoMike

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The Gladiator is hideous...and it sucks off road because of the awful wheelbase / break-over. I think it will dry up and stop selling, and I agree that Ford shouldn't go down that trail. Gladiator has no redeeming qualities compared to a regular Rubi, or to a pickup.
I was going to say the same thing about its looks. I think some of the colors/trims look, at best, fine, but good grief that is one fugly vehicle
 

xXChartmanXx

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I've been thinking about the Gladiator more and more these days, especially after seeing three different Gladiator RUBICON's at Yellowstone National Park last summer (all optioned to the max, beautiful clean paint, really cute matching luggage in each, no hint of their owners wanting to drive their $65K toys off the blacktop) and what that class of vehicle really brings to the JEEP brand.
  • Is it a truck? If it is, it's a really poor choice as a truck
  • Is it a off road beast? It has the kit, but again, it's form factor makes it a really poor choice
  • Does it still drive like a JEEP (and all the negative that implies on-road)? Yea!
  • Is the Gladiator simply another Ridgeline with a very select audience and unable to turn a profit even with $20K of options tarting it up? Probably
TTAC followed up my vehicular wanderings with this article today and it's pointed yet mostly unopinionated (until you get to the comments).

https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2020/11/2020-jeep-gladiator-sport-s-review-poised-for-urban-life/

Does Bronco "need" to follow suit with an even smaller-market vehicle that isn't great off road, isn't great as a truck, and looks as cumbersome as the Gladiator? I would argue there is no business reason to do so. Covid has cost every manufacturer billions, dumping resources into these low-yield makes doesn't make sense. Ranger is a perfectly capable midsize truck, Maverick is rumored to be close to production for small truck, and Bronco looks to be more than capable of giving the fight to Jeep off-road (not in outright capability, but in that entry/mid-market basis) and with the pencil pushers.
I would say that Gladiators make fantastic overland rigs. They are not gonna keep up with rock crawling but they are solid rigs and can hold a ton more than a Wrangler or Bronco can when you are overlanding. Now of course they are ugly (Until you upgrade the hell out of them and then they can look amazing), and they will never take the place of a work truck with a real bed, but for a specific segment (Overlanders, Campers, Support trucks for other off-roaders, etc...) they are solid trucks. A bronco version will be the same but provide better on road performance. Seems like a smart move for Ford.
 

Lab00Rat

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To me that is just an argument on 2 door vs 4 door...
This is basically the same concept The gladiator already is, you just basically removed the 4 door option...
If this is whatcha dig - cool..
Actually, no. The 4-door is WAY too long to be a good off-road vehicle. The 2-door is just as long as the JLU, which is arguably already too long for a "great" off-road vehicle. The 4-Door truck jeep was a bad mistake of a design and not as capable as it need to be for the market. Therefore, the market has rejected it.
 

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I would love to have a Bronco truck, but it won't happen because it would cannibalize sales from the ranger.

I think the Gladiator was a great idea and exactly what a lot of people (like me) were looking for. However the execution was poor and the price far too high. It's a shame because I bet the Gladiator will get dropped instead of improved.
 

xXChartmanXx

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Actually, no. The 4-door is WAY too long to be a good off-road vehicle. The 2-door is just as long as the JLU, which is arguably already too long for a "great" off-road vehicle. The 4-Door truck jeep was a bad mistake of a design and not as capable as it need to be for the market. Therefore, the market has rejected it.
I think we use off road vehicles in different manners. 100% agree for rock crawling 2 doors are the way to go. Shorten that wheelbase, get awesome breakover angles, and wreck house. Desert and dune running can be far better on a longer wheelbase with more stability especially when your turning. So, if your saying a 4 door sucks over a 2 door for rock crawling, I totally get it. All off-roading though? Not gonna buy that.
 

xXChartmanXx

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I was going to say the same thing about its looks. I think some of the colors/trims look, at best, fine, but good grief that is one fugly vehicle
I agree. Even stock Rubicon's and Moab's look horrendously bad. But a decked out lifted Gladiator with upgraded bumpers, tires, wheels, bed racks, etc... can look amazing. You just have to spend $30k after buying your $50k vehicle.
 
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