2020 Jeep Gladiator Turned Into Rad CJ-8 Scrambler Tribute by Michigan Dealer
It costs quite a bit more than the original, though.
Much like Jeep itself, dealers are taking liberties to turn the 2020 Gladiator pickup into all sorts of special editions and recreations to honor the automaker's heritage. While factory-commissioned "Five-Quarter" and "J6" throwbacks were introduced by Jeep at this year's Easter Safari, we've also seen a dealer-built "J-10 Honcho" with retro styling and various modifications that tip a hit to old-school Americana. Another obvious choice to model the new Gladiator after is the classic CJ-8 Scrambler, which is what Preferred CDJR of Grand Haven used as inspiration for its latest tribute.
Similar to Jeep's own interpretation of the modern-day Scrambler, this pickup features all the nostalgiac aesthetics of the original. It's built upon a Gladiator Sport S base in white with orange and red graphics, and it features the period-correct roll hoop that's adorned with KC Daylighters. White trailer-style wheels wrapped in all-terrain Dick Cepek tires bring the whole look together, along with the cloth tent top.
This 4x4 makes quite a bit more power than the CJ-8 did, the latter producing only 115 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque in top-trim straight-six spec. As for the Gladiator, its 3.6-liter V6—the model's only engine option at present—has an output of 285 hp and 260 pound-feet. In this case, it's paired to an automatic transmission, although to truly honor the Scrambler's analog nature, we'd prefer a manual transmission.
Inside, you'll find cloth seats instead of vinyl and even a heap of cushy amenities such as dual-zone climate control. The O.G. Jeep might not have come with a touchscreen infotainment system, digital instrument cluster, or a heated steering wheel, but hey—that's the beauty of technology.
As you'd expect, all these upgrades don't come cheap. The dealership has this truck listed for $51,220 after discounts, which is about $15k over the entry-level Gladiator but still $10k less than the most expensive Rubicon.