2020 Jeep Gladiator Sprints at Top Speed on Salt Marsh Run

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No doubt, the 2020 Gladiator is a beast of a truck and while speed certainly isn’t everything, is the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 really enough?

The 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon 4×4 is not a vehicle to be understated. Brutally-functional and off-road capable, the Gladiator hits a perfect sweet spot, we would call it best of both worlds. The styling is somewhat hit or miss, some love it, some never want to see another one again. Personally, we think its unique and really has some character. There isn’t another truck on the the road quite like it.

The Rubicon’s Rock-Trac 4WD system that simply just a step ahead of the base models Command-Trac system and for serious off-roading it is a must for those extra low-speed crawls. With the ability to tow up to 7,000 pounds on the Rubicon, you won’t break a sweat moving just about anything around. Thanks to supercar enthusiast and 2020 Gladiator Rubicon owner TheStradman, we’ll see if this V6 can hold its own on the salt marshes.

However, a point of contention has been the 3.6-liter V6 Pentastar engine offered inside of many new Jeep products. The power figures for the V6 are 280 horsepower and 260 ft-lbs of torque. Being naturally aspirated, these figures are not bad, but they definitely leave a lot to be desired, especially when placed in a vehicle weighing well over two tons. The engine begs the question: should it have had more power? The obvious solutions would have been a twin-turbo V6 or an efficient V8.

Gladiator Rubicon Salt Marsh Top Speed

But with downsizing of modern engines and cylinder counts going down every year, would that be even possible in the modern automotive landscape? One thing we often see advertised and and rarely ever get to experience is the top speed of a vehicle. Most of us aren’t going 150-plus MPH down the highway for obvious reasons.

According to the Stradman, the reason he is bringing his Gladiator out to the salt marshes to test its top speed is because he plans to engine swap the car and is curious of what sort of baseline he’s working with. His previous JK Wrangler managed 105 mph, but after his run on the 2.5-mile salt marsh, Stradman manages to only hit 97 MPH before it seems that the Gladiator is being electronically limited by the ECU to go any faster.

Gladiator Rubicon Salt Marsh

His solution to this problem is to continue forth with the engine swap, most likely making the world’s first V8-powered Gladiator. We wish we could solve all of our problems that easily. We are curious how different of a beast the Gladiator will be after the swap, we will have to stay tuned to find out.

Photos: Screenshots

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Daud Gonzalez is a lifelong car enthusiast, and automotive writer with a specialty in modified and race-ready rides. Gonzalez is a regular contributor to the Internet Brands Auto Group websites, including Corvette Forum, 6SpeedOnline, and Honda-tech, among others.

He spends most of his time modifying his cars, and ruining them in the process. He is the owner of a track build BMW 335i, a semi-off road spec 1981 Toyota Hilux, a drift-ready 1990 Nissan 240sx and a 1990 BMW K75 motorcycle.

Most of his free-time is dedicated to making sure his vehicles survive to see the next day. You are likely to catch him at one of Southern California's race tracks on the weekends.

Daud can be reached at [email protected]

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