Was this a last-minute change or planned all along?
Set to debut later this month at the LA Auto Show, anticipation is strong for the first Jeep pickup truck in decades and up until now we thought its name would be Scrambler. According to Jeep Scrambler Forum, that name has been replaced for Gladiator. Needless to say, that forum website will need a new name. Although Jeep has yet to officially confirm this (though we’ve reached out to the automaker for comment), the website claims it managed to snap a screenshot of a new section for the FCA website that briefly appeared before being taken down. Unfortunately for FCA it wasn’t removed fast enough.
As you can clearly see, the name and model year “2020 Jeep Gladiator” is right there at the top of the page. The website also adds its own long-time trusted source saw this page with his or her own eyes. “I actually went to the media site and saw the page. I saw it on my iPhone browser and on Google Chrome.” The last time Jeep used the Gladiator nameplate was back in 2005 for its previous-generation Wrangler-based pickup truck concept that never reached production.
The concept was an immediate hit and, unfortunately, Jeep’s parent company at the time, Daimler Chrysler, was not exactly experiencing the so-called “Marriage made in Heaven” or “Merger of Equals” status the two automakers claimed when they agreed to merge in 1998. The merger fell apart in 2007 and the Jeep Gladiator concept never came to be.
There’s also historical Jeep precedent with the Gladiator nameplate, as it was first used back in 1962 on a Wagoneer-based pickup truck. Production lasted until 1988. As for the Scrambler name, it too was utilized on a previous Jeep pickup, specifically the CJ-8 beginning in 1981 until 1986. Why has Jeep changed its new pickup truck’s name at the last minute? Or, alternatively, was Gladiator the planned nameplate all along? Whatever the case may be, we’ll be on hand at LA for its live debut in just a few short weeks.