SACRAMENTO, Calif. — For the 2020 Gladiator, Jeep is following the same pricing mantra as it does for the Wrangler: Versatility comes with a cost.
The Gladiator pickup's base Sport model with the optional automatic transmission will start at $37,040, including shipping, putting it well above competing nameplates such as the Chevrolet Colorado and segment-leading Toyota Tacoma, which begin in the low to mid-$20,000s. With the manual transmission, the Sport is $2,000 less.
The top-of-the-line Rubicon trim starts at $47,040 with the eight-speed automatic transmission. Jeep says the priciest Gladiators, fully loaded, will top $60,000.
Consumers who can't wait for a feature-laden Rubicon can preorder the limited-run Launch Edition online on April 4 — the so-called 4x4 Day. Orders for the general lineup will begin afterward, Jeep said.
The Gladiator, which comes with a fortified rear suspension system and longer wheelbase that set it apart from the Wrangler, also distinguishes itself from competing brands with its removable roof and doors.
Jeep is betting that shoppers seeking the off-road capability that has defined the brand won't be put off by the starting prices, which match up a little more closely with the off-road models of the Gladiator's competitors, such as the Colorado Z71 and ZR2 and the Tacoma's TRD Sport and Pro models.
The brand is also hoping the Gladiator serves as a retention tool for Wrangler owners who have been known to leave the brand to buy pickups. Scott Tallon, director of Jeep, says the brand is looking to draw from both midsize and full-size pickup shoppers looking for added versatility.
"The modifications you'd have to make on midsize trucks today to achieve what we've achieved capability-wise, you'd have to spend thousands of dollars to come anywhere close," Tallon told Automotive News during a media event here.
"You can easily price yourself out of that market," Tallon acknowledged. "It's something we will monitor closely, but I think we are well-positioned."