Forget Gladiator, this is the Jeep truck we want.
2018 was a big year for the Jeep brand, as the highly-anticipated Gladiator pickup truck finally made its debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show. As we expected, the Gladiator is powered by the same 3.6-liter V6 Pentastar engine found in the Wrangler, producing 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. There will also be a 3.0-liter diesel V6 producing 260 hp and 442 lb-ft of torque.
The Gladiator certainly has us excited but renderings have already imagined what an even more badass six-wheeled version could look like. As it turns out, we don't need the renderings because a company called Hauk Designs in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania has already built one.
This isn't just any "normal" six-wheeled Jeep if there even is such a thing. This Wrangler-based beast is called the Loco Hauk - it was named after being converted to run on steam power, like a locomotive. The Loco Hauk is powered by a 100 cubic inch (just over 1.6-liter) V4 single-acting, trunk-piston, poppet-valve uniflow steam motor mated to a six-speed NSG370 manual transmission. This V4 produces just 130-140 hp but a whopping 2,500 lb-ft of torque.
Just imagine the reactions you would get driving down the street in the Loco Hauk. Unfortunately, that street would have to be rather short because the range with the steam engine is only 1.5 miles at speeds of 30 to 35 mph due to only being able to carry 55 gallons of water. Clearly, the Loco Hauk was built more for display purposes than actual usability.
The Loco Hauk is now for sale, though minus the steam engine that's been returned to the steam museum. However, the six-wheeled colossus does include a six-speed manual transmission, t-case, wheels, tires, and axles. Hauk Designs even sells a Hellcat-powered Wrangler, so perhaps the company would be willing to drop 707 horsepower into the Loco Hauk for an interested buyer.