Jeep Gladiator Rubicon EcoDiesel off road

Jeep Gladiator Rubicon EcoDiesel: Oil-burning off-road excellence

Jeep has given the Gladiator a diesel mill, and I’m here to tell you it is good. The 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 cranks out an okay-ish 260 horsepower, but it also clatters forth with 442 lb-ft of torque. Jeep had to give this a beefier 8-speed gearbox to handle the grunt. But is it all worth the extra $6,000 you need to shell out to use a different pump at the gas station?

I believe it is. But I don’t think you need to do it on the Rubicon model. If you have the dough and don’t care, go have fun, sure. But you can spec the EcoDiesel on Sport and Overland trims as well. It makes sense there because now you can keep the price relatively reasonable. Otherwise, you’re looking at a Jeep truck with an asking price well north of $60k. In fact, this tester here? It stickers for $65k and that’s crazy.

Still, the diesel addition to the lineup is a welcome one. I feel the 3.6 gas V6 is getting long in the tooth. Yes, it’s way better than the minivan V6 it replaced, but the competition all have better gas engines on offer. And I also think Jeep needs to make the turbo four-cylinder available on the Gladiator as well. It’s punchy off the line and makes great power through its rev range.

For now though, I’m happy to see an alternative to the gas offering on the Gladiator.

[Disclaimer: Jeep tossed us the keys to the diesel-drinking Gladiator and included a tank of fuel.]

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3 responses to “Jeep Gladiator Rubicon EcoDiesel: Oil-burning off-road excellence”

  1. Zentropy Avatar

    Should have been a four-cylinder. With a stick.

    1. Jeff Glucker Avatar
      Jeff Glucker

      The stick in the new Jeep isn’t great though… though that’s mainly a clutch issue. The 8-speed, however, is great.

  2. Salguod Avatar

    $65K truck and you’re hoping for “moderately reliable”. That says something about the Jeep reputation.