You can motor anywhere with Jeep’s Gladiator Mojave. Go ahead, try to change my mind.
The Gladiator Mojave is a rare model. This desert/off-road go-getter is the ultimate expression of usability.
It’s simple to understand: a Jeep Wrangler, doors off and all, with a 5-foot truck bed, that can still go off-road and do everything a typical Wrangler can do. In the Mojave edition, it is not only designed for the trails, but also the desert. The first Fiat Chrysler Automobiles vehicle in the fleet with a desert-rated badge, sure to dominate all terrains in its path.
Enormous 33-inch Knobby Falken tires allow the 218-inch long off-road ute/truck combo to tackle the road to the back woods and everything in between. I am sure you know someone who either has or has had a Jeep Wrangler and constantly complained about the ride quality as they were just not comfortable. That’s no longer an issue; this Jeep is exceptionally comfortable.
The slate-colored leather optional seats are nice and squishy. You know my love for the UConnect infotainment system, simply the best in the business.
“4×4 capability has always been the foremost pillar of the Jeep brand and the new Gladiator Mojave is a natural extension of our legendary Trail Rated 4×4 capability leadership,” said Jim Morrison, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA North America. “Jeep Gladiator is already the most capable Jeep pickup on the planet and, with the addition of the new Mojave model, we are delivering our most passionate customers a new level of capability with the ability to master high-speed desert and sand terrains.”
We threw the doors and roof off our black tester and took the hills in an 80-mile off-road trek near the Quabbin Reservoir in central Massachusetts for an all-day experience in the back country. The Mojave did one heck of a job in ride quality down the highway, as well as off-road in the deepest sand/mountainous dunes that we could find.
Resale value always comes to mind when thinking of Jeep, not in its lower models like Cherokee and Compass, but with Wrangler. A whopping 30% loss of value is noted after three years for four-door models, compared to 31.5% on the typical Wrangler. You might think this is high — it’s not. In fact, it is the lowest average for all vehicles at 49.6%, according to a recent study from iseecars.com.
“Jeep Wranglers have stellar value retention for reasons including their durability and iconic timeless design. The Wrangler is also a niche vehicle that appeals to many audiences thanks to its wide range of trims, and it has amassed an incredibly loyal following that helps keep demand high,” says Julie Blackley, communications manager for iseecars.com.
Obviously, we were expecting the historically great Rubicon model to test out at the top of those meant for crawling and the deep outdoors, but the Mojave was actually better as it was super flexible in ride, road noise and usage while still having the ability of the Rubicon. The Ford Raptor really only comes to mind as a competitor for the Mojave as its Fox Shocks package and other similar additions make this a real sand-lovers dream, and don’t forget, it still is a pickup.
“The Gladiator gives our customers the capability they expect from Jeep. With the new Gladiator Mojave we take the brand and our customers in a new direction as the first vehicle with a ‘Desert Rated’ badge,” said Pete Milosavlevski, chief engineer for Jeep Gladiator. “We are constantly listening to our passionate customer base and the Mojave model is the latest result of that.”
FCA and other manufacturers in this off-road category are clearly worried about the recent announcement of the revived Ford Bronco, as they should. But Jeep lovers will maintain their loyalty and stick to what they know.
Join the cult, get a Jeep, make it a Gladiator Mojave, you heard it here first.
Jeep Gladiator Mojave
As Tested: $61,150
MPG: 17 city, 22 highway, 18.8 as tested
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