Trends come and go, but Jeep has been the top word in adventure since the brand began production for civilians in 1945. Still, the brand manages to fascinate aficionados with new and improved features, engineering improvements that expand the possibility of off-road journeys, and tons of fun. For those wondering, “what’s new at a Jeep dealer near me,” the answer is always “Plenty!”
Though the 2020 model year hasn’t seen any brand new models, the updates and options on the existing lineup have given Jeep fans plenty to talk about. From the continuing success of the Jeep Gladiator, to new eco-friendly engineering, to Jeep’s highly coveted Limited Edition offerings, there’s always something to look forward to in a new Jeep.
The 2020 Jeep Gladiator
After years of rumors, the Jeep Gladiator hit the pavement in April 2019. This four-door midsize truck boasts the genetic structure of a Wrangler but adds a 5-foot cargo bed and 7,650 pound towing capacity. As a result, it’s not only highly capable of towing and hauling, but it is happiest when it’s taken off-road and into the wilderness.
Five trims are available: the Sport, Sport S, Overland, Rubicon, and Mojave. All versions of the Gladiator include a 3.6L V6 engine, which offers 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. This engine is paired to a six-speed manual transmission, which can be optioned out for an eight-speed automatic. The 2020 Gladiator offers one bed size, and all models have four-wheel drive.
The Sport starts things out right with 17-inch steel wheels with all-season tires. The door locks, mirrors, and windows are all manual operation, and the soft top folds, the doors can be removed, and the front windshield can be folded down. Cruise control is included, along with a rearview camera, Bluetooth, and a 5-inch infotainment display. The Sport is also equipped with a standard Class II bumper hitch, giving it the ability to tow 4,500 with no additional equipment.
The Sport S trim takes things up with power features, including door and tailgate locks, heated mirrors, and windows are added, along with an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The Sport S also offers optional upgrades, such as technology, cargo, and safety-related packages.
Opting to the Overland adds 18-inch wheels with body-color wheel arches, automatic headlights, LED-lit side steps, a larger 7-inch infotainment display, additional USB ports, and a 110V outlet. The top tier Rubicon trim was meant to do the most off-roading and is equipped appropriately. This model includes a specially-designed transfer case for a lower crawl ratio, accommodations for 33-inch all-terrain tires, front and rear locking differentials, rock rails, skid plates, Fox shock absorbers, and a front stabilizer bar that can be disconnected electronically.
If you ever find yourself wanting to do some off-roading in the desert, Jeep has finally stepped up with an option for you with the Mojave. The Mojave is very similar to the Rubicon but has a few extras that make it ready for the desert rather than the trail. One of these features is a selectable tire-fill alert, which allows the system to provide an audible alert when a tire’s desired pressure is reached.
When it comes to mixing “work” and “play,” the 2020 Jeep Gladiator is ready to be your guide!
The 2020 Wrangler Engine Options
In January 2020, Jeep teased the 4xe plug-in hybrid Wrangler at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV. The promise that hybrid vehicles will join the Jeep lineup is highly anticipated for late 2020 or early 2021. While the US waits for the release of the electric Jeeps, Wrangler engines have received attention to make them more economically and environmentally friendly.
Drivers of the 2020 Wrangler have a choice of five engines, two of which feature the new eTorque Mild Hybrid System. This technology replaces the alternator with a 48V generator that captures braking energy and uses it to boost power for low-end torque. This generator delivers the current to a 430 watt-hour lithium-ion battery, which is mounted on the rear interior wall of the Wrangler and converts power to charge the battery and provide effortless start/stop transitions. The overall result is more power, better fuel mileage, and an increase in responsiveness.
The first Wrangler engine sporting this technology is a 2.0L inline-4 Turbo engine, which offers 270 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. The result is a fuel economy of 22 MPG in the city and 24 MPG on the highway. The famous 3.6L Pentatstar V6 also gets an eTorque boost, improving its crawling ability and its fuel usage. With 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, this engine rates 19 MPG in the city and 22 MPG on the highway.
Additionally, an EcoDiesel engine has been added to the lineup. The 3.0L EcoDiesel V6 is a brand new option for Wrangler drivers. This engine offers 260 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque, with a fuel economy of 22 MPG in the city and 29 MPG on the highway. All three engines are rated to tow up to 3,500 pounds, as well, leaving nothing on the table when it comes to choosing an economical, reliable, and capable engine.
While the nation waits patiently for the promised electronic Wrangler- along with the promised 4xe Renegade and Compass––Jeep has delivered on their plan to be more “green” in their 2020 model lineup with a choice of two “mild hybrid” and one EcoDiesel engine.
The 2020 North Edition
Jeep is famous for its special Limited Editions. Not only are these vehicles stylish inside and out, but they’re uniquely fit for a special purpose. In 2020, Jeep presents the North Edition to its lineup, as a vehicle that is impervious to perilous weather. The North Edition is available for drivers of the 2020 Cherokee, Compass, Gladiator, Grand Cherokee, Renegade, and Wrangler, and includes plenty of features that can combat some of winter’s harshest conditions.
It’s not surprising that Jeep would include All-Season/All-Terrain tires on the North Edition, but they’ve also added all-weather floor mats, thinking about a driver’s needs both inside and outside of the vehicle. Anti-lock brakes, traction control, and brake lock differential help prevent spinouts and slides. The North Edition also includes the Jeep Trail Rated kit and standard four-wheel drive, regardless of the model chosen. Tow hooks and 22’ tow straps may seem like a strange inclusion, but for those who live in blustery and/or rural locations, these are welcome additions.
The interior features are a mixture of luxurious comfort and practicality. For instance, the Uconnect touchscreen is a massive 8.4”, increasing the size from the 7” offering on regular models. It’s also equipped with SiriusXM Travel Link Weather services, allowing drivers to be aware of conditions on the road ahead. The remote start system is another benefit when gearing up for a drive on a chilly morning––a prospect aided by heated seats and steering wheel. The heated power mirrors that won’t need careful chiseling to be ready to hit the road––drivers can defrost and go.
The Wrangler and Gladiator, which typically feature a soft top, will be outfitted with the FreedomTop hardtop. This three-piece modular roof can be separated and removed when the weather permits. This means more insulation during snow, hail, and sleet, without sacrificing the feeling of wind in your hair in the summer.
Many Jeep fans agree that anytime is a great time for one of the manufacturer’s rugged vehicles, but 2020 is a very promising year for the Jeep lineup. The Gladiator emerges from the rumor mill with plenty of power and capability for towing, stowing, and going nearly anywhere, with a five-foot bed and off-roading in its DNA. The hybrid 4xe Wrangler is still on the horizon, but EcoDiesel and eTorque engine options bring the American public closer to an economical, environmentally-friendly adventure vehicle. And while the weather remains impossible to predict, the Jeep North Edition lineup provides everyone with an option for staying safe, warm, and comfortable even when the roads turn to slush. Any of these might just be the best reason to head to a Jeep dealer near you!