Both the 2020 Jeep Gladiator and the 2019 Ford Ranger have made waves upon their hiatus-breaking introductions. In fact, the Gladiator is popularizing through media drivers can’t ignore. As such, those on the lookout for their next big purchase (or should I say midsize purchase) may find themselves stuck between these two crucial contenders. If you’re unsure of which side to lean, we’re here to shed some light.
For a Pickup, Power and Capacity are Paramount
Let’s be real, here: what’s a truck without power and capacity? The 2020 Jeep Gladiator sprints ahead with a standard 3.6-liter V6 engine that procures 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. Eventually, buyers will be able to elect a turbodiesel variant with seriously supplemented torque, but Jeep is giving this truck a gnarly start.
On the other hand, the 2019 Ford Ranger’s only engine option is a 2.3-liter I4 engine that maxes out at 270 horsepower. With 310 pound-feet of torque, it’s got an advantage, but its limited automatic transmission can’t compare to the manual option in the Jeep.
When it comes towing, you’d think a brand with the F-150 in its repertoire would kill the competition. However, the Ford Ranger can only tow a maximum 7,500 pounds, and that’s with the optional tow package. Jeep takes the lead on this round with 7,650 pounds of towing capacity.
If payload is more your thing, you may be impressed by the 1,860-pound capacity in the Ranger. Although, it’s a mere 160 pounds added to that of the Gladiator, which makes up for it from behind anyway.
Competitive Off-Road Agility
For most people, if they had to take a wild guess on which truck could tackle the off-road better, they’d probably bet on the Jeep.
And they’d be right. The base model of the 2020 Jeep Gladiator features Dana 44 front and rear axles. Head up the chain and things get even more impressive, with the Rubicon exuding confidence through an electronic disconnecting front sway bar, FOX shocks and even massive 33-inch tires.
The Ford Ranger is not an inherent backroad junkie. In fact, it only suits the needs of off-road enthusiasts when equipped with extras. However, we’ll give it to Ford: additions like steel skid plates, a transfer case, front differential and a terrain management system are both unique and impressive.
Bed Length and Beyond
Whether it be on the inside our out, the convenience and comfort of a truck is key. The Ranger accommodates multiple driver needs with the availability of a five- or six-foot truck bed. While the Gladiator only offers a five-foot bed this time around, we have a feeling Jeep will cater to different audiences in the future. Until then, this bed length is more than sufficient.
On the inside, the Ranger offers a more polished cabin, which may be suitable for families seeking a crossover aesthete. Meanwhile, the Gladiator brings moments of Wrangler essence to its interior, making this pickup truck one to remember. Perhaps the choice is based on personal preference, but we like the uniqueness of the Gladiator style.
The 2020 Jeep Gladiator Shines
The Ford Ranger may be a popular international rider, but the 2020 Jeep Gladiator pickup truck is here to show itself to American audiences and beyond. From comfort to capacity, we can’t think of a better midsize option.