Ford Authority

The Jeep Gladiator Mojave Could Push Ford To Bring The Ranger Raptor Stateside

Most of the time since Ford first introduced its F-150 Raptor pickup aimed at high-speed desert running, it has stood alone with little competition. That is changing with Jeep announcing the 2020 Jeep Gladiator Mojave that it is positioning as the ultimate high-performance off-road, mid-size pickup. Note that Jeep is clear that this is a mid-size pickup. Ford has yet to bring the Ranger Raptor to the United States, but we can hope that if the Gladiator Mojave does well, the Ranger Raptor may follow because it would be the ideal competition for the Jeep.

One interesting tidbit about the Gladiator Mojave is that it is the first Jeep vehicle to earn the brand’s new Desert Rated badge. Launching a new badge wouldn’t make much sense for a single model, so the assumption is multiple Jeep models will launch with the Desert Rated badge, just as there are multiple models with the Trail Rated badge today. Jeep says that the Desert Rated vehicles represent the “ultimate in high-speed off-road capability.”

Gladiator Mojave models have significant suspension upgrades and have conducted extensive testing over harsh sand and desert terrain for durability and protection. Just like the F-150 Raptor, the Gladiator Mojave uses specially tuned Fox 2.5-inch internal bypass shocks with external reservoirs. Jeep also brags on industry-exclusive Fox front hydraulic jounce dampers, a reinforced frame, a one-inch front suspension lift with silver front skid plate, stronger axles with cast-iron steering knuckles, aggressive front seats with integrated upper bolsters, and standard 33-inch Falken Wildpeak all-train tires.

Jeep says that the special Fox shocks and jounce bumpers provide confidence and capability, including improved bottom-out control on harsh desert terrain at high-speeds. The suspension also promises a comfortable ride over gravel washboard and broken pavement on back roads. Jeep also notes that mud-train tires are an option. The Gladiator Mojave will launch in the second quarter of 2020 at an undisclosed price.

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Shane is a car guy with a fondness for Mustangs and off-roading.

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  1. vbondjr1

    There are so many things Ford should have brought stateside from Australia. Dodge has succeeded in a market that Ford should have been capitalizing on for so many years. When Dodge went down to the Challenger, Charger, Durango and Ram pickup trucks, it saved it’s own butt by giving people what they wanted, a coupe, a sedan, an SUV and a truck lineup. Dodge Brought back the Charger as an amazing coupe-like sedan and gave it styling and then gave it’s whole lineup (minus the Challenger) the styling of the Dodge Charger. Dodge already had the off road stuff on lock with Jeep, why it’s high end brand Chrysler suffered because of dated styling and just being plain boring. It especially suffered when the SRT 300 stopped being sold and now they’ve cut the fat and focused on just having the 300 and the Pacifica and although the V8 engine is globally an endangered species, with Fiat owning not only FCA, but other brands like Alfa Romeo, which currently has a 505hp 2.9L twin turbo V6 in their Guilia and Stelvio Quadrifoglio cars and Maserati, which has not only a 345hp 3.0L twin turbo but also a 424hp version of the 3.0L Twin turbo v6 in the Ghibli S and and S Q4 AWD and the Quattroporte along with the Chassis that are under all of those cars, FCA could easily bring some serious high performance V6 power to America under the Dodge Brand along with some changes to the lineup. Plus, with vehicles like the Grand Cherokee, the upcoming wagoneer and grand wagoneer bringing luxury to the lineup, FCA could get rid of Chrysler and just have Dodge and Jeep. Along the lines of what i said above. With the parent company owning Maserati and Alfa Romeo, a 505hp 2.9L SRT6 Durango/Jeep Grand Cherokee could be on the horizon along with luxurious variants of the Durango Citadel, Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit, Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer with 425hp 3.0L twin turbo V6 engines and Maserati levels of luxury along with Ram trucks becoming even more luxurious and more powerful with smaller displacement engines. Ram already has a high horsepower I-6 Cummins in their heavy duty pickup trucks, what would stop them from dropping a smaller displacement version of that in a 1500-series pickup truck along with the aforementioned twin turbo V6 engines. What’s more is that FCA already offers alot of stuff for the customizing Jeep Wranglers and Gladiators. If FCA went the route i mentioned above and then offered Mopar authorized upgrades for these new performance vehicles, Dodge could still be a very reputable performance automaker with it’s SRT brand growing even larger and still producing menacing performance vehicles and upgrades like it used to do with the SRT4 Neon, a vehicle that needs to make it’s way back into the fold based off of a blend of Alfa Romeo 4C and Fiat Abarth tech and in a FWD based AWD 4-door, 5-seater package. and If FCA does this along with the rest of the things it’s doing with Jeep, it could seriously outdo Ford, seeing that Ford is flapping in the wind, trying to figure out what to do with itself. FCA also has it’s E-Torque mild hybrid systems which add electrification to the lineup and I’m sure there will be a few electric vehicles coming down the pipeline, especially since Fiat already has the 500E. I’m sure some of the smaller Jeep models will eventually have electric motors like the Cherokee and the Renegade as options or even as the only option, especially on the Renegade.
    Now, don’t get me wrong, I think electric vehicles have their place and I’m back and forth about the future of the Mustang and thought’s of how Ford could play this out. Ford could completely change the mustang’s entire direction and use it to pioneer the electric future, getting rid of the pony car we’ve known for so long and using it as a high performance pioneer to chase the electric future along with vehicles like the EVOS, a reinvented, fully electric C-Max, switching the Transit and Transit Connect to fully electric with certain autonomous capabilities, switching vehicles such as the Ecosport and Escape to electric and hyphenating the names to E-cosport and E-scape, signaling that they are completely electric vehicles and possibly an ATLAS electric version of the F150 pickup truck to truly compete with the upcoming GMC Hummer and that stupid Tesla thing which would give ford a huge footprint in the electric market. If Ford were to do that, It would allow room for them to do something different and bring certain other vehicles, not only from Australia, but from Europe as well, to the US. Ford should absolutely bring not only the Ranger Raptor to the states, but a few other versions of the Ranger, such as the Wildtrak, to the states as well. As much as the thought of the new Bronco is cool, Ford should have brought the Everest to the US as well and just updated it as well as actually updating the the Ranger before bringing it back. The reason I say this is because the Bronco has a lot of weight on it’s shoulders of carrying the burden of living up to the expectations of people who have been Bronco fans of the past and who want to relive the glory days of yesteryears of long ago, when in reality, those days are long gone. As I’ve stated earlier, the dinosaur V8 is at the end of it’s days and the vehicles that we’ve glorified that have those engines are about to be extinct. However, if Ford were to update and upgrade the Ranger, bring on a vehicle like the Everest and a few other things, Ford could easily continue bringing out performance vehicles that will usher in a new era and be able to coincide with electric vehicles and bring about a balance.
    Something that we all know about Ford is it’s love for Europe. For a long time Ford owned Jaguar, Aston Martin and Range Rover and will be joining forces with Volkswagen, the parent company of Audi. Not to mention the history of the Ford RS brand in Europe, which gave birth to some of the hottest 4-cylinder and 5-cylinder cars out there. Not to mention, in very recent years, Ford had a set of seriously hot inline 6-cylinder engines in Australia with the Barra engine family which included the 416hp/417tq 4.0L Barra 310T and the 436/425tq 4.0L Barra 325T I-6 Turbo. In the last few years, Ford has come along way in America with the Ecoboost platform, creating the 350hp/350tq 2.3L, the 400hp 3.0L, and the 3.5L Ecoboost which ranges from the 450hp/510tq raptor variant to the 660hp/550tq engine in the Ford GT, and the hybrid 3.0L Ecoboost that generates 494hp/630tq in the Aviator GT. I say all of this to bring to a point of the possibilities of what Ford could do with all that it has at it’s disposal without having to use models that are burdened with living up to old American expectations. Bring out a global Ford Falcon, give it a fastback coupe like design similar to the Aston Martin Rapide, with an interior like the Jaguar XJ R-Sport, AWD handling like an Audi and a modern ecoboost version of the 325T Barra engine along with a few of the other Ecoboost engine options all on the new CD6 platform, Bring out a hotter Explorer RS on the CD6 platform with the 660hp 3.5L Ecoboost to rival the Range Rover Sport SVR, bring out a few 5-cylinder Ecoboost engines and make some good American versions of cars such as a new version of the MK3 Capri RS and the Sierra RS, strike up a relationship with Yamaha again and bring out a cross-plane crank version of the 2.3L Ecoboost with a crazy intake manifold and bring back the Escort with an RS package and good version of what the EXP should have been on a FWD based AWD platform, Drop a 3.0L V6 in the Ranger and an global platform Everest and bring those up as the Raptors. As for the F150, Drop the 5.0L completely from the lineup and replace it with an ecoboost version of the Barra inline-6 turbo engines. Both the Barra 310T and 325T out perform the 5.0L truck engine in horsepower and torque and with an inline-6, it make the truck much easier to work on for both Ford Techs and DIY customers who still work on their own cars if they can. As for performance I already mentioned the 3.5L Ecoboost with the 450hp/510tq raptor version and the 660hp GT Version so even if Ford wanted to bring back the Lighting, the 660hp GT version for the street with a lowered independent front and rear magnaride suspension, big Brembo brakes, quad side exit exhaust systems, 7-speed DCT from the GT500, AWD and a host of other things are already there at Ford’s disposal to make that fastest production pickup ever made. Bring out a global FPV (Ford Performance Vehicles) umbrella that would cover the ST, RS, XR, Typhoon, Raptor and Lightning version of vehicles along with the Ford Performance upgrade parts catalog. Upgrading the catalog to include factory approved aftermarket brands of exhaust, intercooler upgrades, styling upgrades, wheels, lights, stereo equipment and other things would allow Ford to bring in alot more revenue and be at a better place in the market as well. They would be covered under the factory warranty as long as the approved upgrades were installed by a licensed Ford Performance installer.
    The other place that Ford needs improvement in is their premium/luxury lineup. My thoughts are to get rid of Lincoln completely and bring out the Vingale lineup and offer that across the board globally. Granted only certain cars would get the Vingale treatment, The EVOS, Mach-E, Falcon, Explorer, Expedition, E-scape and Ford Edge. This move would be cost-cutting without cutting corners as it would offer a blend of Lincoln Black Label and Vingale refinements to these top tier Ford Packages without the need to offer a completely separate lineup with different sheet metal and everything else, similar to what GMC has with it’s Denali lineup. The nice thing about this would be that where the EVOS, Mach-E, and E-scape would all be electric, the Falcon, Explorer and Expedition would all have the 3.0L Hybrid V6 under their hoods boasting 494hp/630tq, just like the current Aviator GT does, where the Edge would simply be powered by the 400hp 3.0T. A lineup like this would make a lot more sense and not only allow Ford to keep ICE performance vehicle around but offer a full global lineup of electric, performance and luxury vehicles, reduce expenses make lives for Ford Techs and ford owners easier, improve profit and make the company overall better and more competitive.

    1. John Q Public

      You should be in product planning or marketing; so many ideas to be shot down by the bean counters. Draft up a good product plan including investment cost, development timing, production feasibility, and certification and see if it sells. Keep in mind that companies such as Ford are in the business to make money. Just because they could build something doesn’t make it a good idea financially.

      1. vbondjr1

        you have no idea how much i would love to be in product planning for Ford. To me, they have so many amazing products that should be put together that would sell but it’s like they either don’t see it or they’re too scared to move forward. I’ve watched Dodge for years eat everyone’s lunch with the Charger, Challenger and Durango and so many other companies do great things with their lineup and watched Ford miss the mark time after time and I sit back frustrated because they have SOOOOOO much potential in so many markets. The problem is to me, what I said above would make money. I don’t have all of the knowledge with the calculations or any of that stuff to know exactly what it would profit or whatever but cars like what I mentioned above work and it’s not just everyone else that has proven it, Ford has proven it! Ford needs to bring back things like FPV and SVT, even if they bring it back under the Ford Performance umbrella. If Ford is trying to go global the go global, but they need to stop with the boring cars that kill their profit and stop rushing things to market! The bean counters aren’t the ones who are buying the cars, WE ARE!!! Sorry I’m ranting but it frustrates me as a fan of Ford that they won’t listen to the people out here who want to buy Ford products but Ford won’t do what it is that they need to do. Stop chasing Honda, stop Chasing Elon Musk, stop chasing all of the things that they aren’t and go back to being what they are. I truly agree with striving to better yourself and your business and your profit, but at the end of the day be yourself. Honda/Acura don’t chase anyone else, they may compete with others in the market but their goal is to do better by beating themselves. Amplify your strengths and strengthen your weaknesses. Ford is a company founded on performance cars, trucks and long lasting vehicles (they were at one point) and vehicles that could easily be repaired or modified by the DIY guy. Ford had a slogan “win on sunday, sell on monday.” why? because they were eyeballs deep in racing. You could buy performance parts right over the counter at your local Ford Dealership and they were backed by Ford. Back in the day, you didn’t need to buy a Lincoln to have a top of the line car with Ford, you bought the top of the line Ford and it was more than good enough. Ford sold more cars when Ford was more customer focused. I agree that people want electric cars and people want SUVs, but there are so many people out there that want good, solid, affordable performance vehicles that are more than just one dimensional. The Charger sells so well because it’s more than just a one dimensional car. Even with 707hp, the Charger sells because its usable. The Challenger sells because it’s usable. It has a trunk, it’s comfortable and so what it isn’t the sharpest handling of the three, it still works. Same concept applied for the Falcon in Australia or even the Holden muscle cars. They worked because they were multi-dimensional. Chevrolet failed because they failed to present the SS properly and it cost too much. The auto industry has everyone in an uproar right now because of the fact that they aren’t presenting electrification and automation properly. Trolleys and trains are electric and people ride them every day. If a train was automated, most people who got on it wouldn’t know the difference because most of them never see the conductor anyway. You tell people that cars are going to be electric and automated and everyone looses their minds! ( i wish i could put a joker face right there but i can’t). But to say, hey look, We’re about to switch some things up and make alot of our comercial vehicles like the Transit and Transit Connect electric vehicles along with certain non-performance models such as the Escape and Ecosport and they will be available with automated features such as a switch activated park assist feature, an automated cruise control feature that will allow vehicles to switch over to automated highway cruise control where the vehicles, systems will drive the car until the person decides to take back over by placing their foot on the accelerator or what have you. an Automated emergency system so that if the car is in an accident, the car will automatically send a signal to EMS, Police and Fire and be able to check the vitals of the car’s occupants via contact sensors in the seats and steering wheel. Things like that would ease people’s minds about the “Future” of automobiles. Not trying to shove the fact that Electric and autonomous cars are coming, regular cars are going away and there’s nothing you can do about it! down people’s throats. I see nothing wrong with electric cars as long as there is a balance. I see nothing wrong with electric performance and honestly, as mad as I’ve been about the Mustang Mach E, my thoughts now are that honestly it might not be a bad idea, IF IF IF IF IF, Ford brings out something else to fill the void of an ICE performance car. Since the Mustang name would live on in a performance vehicle, the replacement cars don’t have to be a Mustang, nor does it have to live up to the Mustang name, which was why I mentioned the Capri, the Sierra, the MK2 Focus RS/ST and the Falcon. Those cars are all performance vehicles and are amazing performance vehicles in Europe and in Australia. Two of them are known for 4 & 6 cylinder engines, the Focus is known for it’s snarly 5-cylinder, while the Falcon in Australia is known for ultra high performance with both inline-6 turbo engines and 8-cylinder engines and while the V8 is going away, an Inline-6 Turbo (along with the rest of the ecoboost performance family) would be more than enough to fit the bill. Ford has everything it needs already. They don’t need to be volume sellers, especially not the top tier ones, but if you sell them in the markets that they will sell in like America, Europe and Australia, you make your money back and then some. I could almost guarantee that if Ford were to make the Capri, the Falcon and the Explorer on the CD6 platform, give them several different trim levels and sell them world wide and make them proper cars, they’d take sales away from not only dodge, but BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Range Rover, Audi, Lexus and Infiniti. Same thing with the Focus. Let Ford go back to making a proper MK4 Focus RS/ST with an upgraded 5-Cylinder Ecoboost engine making about 400hp in the RS platform and watch it take sales from AMG, Subaru and Honda. Same thing with the Puma, if done right. Same thing with the Ranger and the Everest. Even without a V8 Ranger Raptor. Redesign the Ranger and drop a 400hp I-5 Ecoboost or even a 425hp 3.0L Ecoboost V6 under the hood and watch the world swoon! They’d Forget TRD, NISMO and that hideous ZR2 Colorado. Want to take some of the heat from Tesla? Bring out a high performance trio with the EVOS, the Mach E and an Atlas electric pickup that can run with the new GMC Hummer. Elon Musk was baiting Ford to make them waste money and loose focus! Give the EVOS some performance trims, such as the EVOS Maverick and the EVOS Thunderbolt, making the Thunderbolt faster than anything Tesla has on the market, make it stop better, make it handle better, give it sound, give it everything and make it affordable and then walk all over Elon Musk! You want to compete with Cadillac for American luxury and performance, bring out the Vignale trim on a few Ford vehicles and rock out with the 3.0L Hybrid 494hp/630tq powertrain and make it perform. Give it a few touches of Jaguar and Aston martin in tech and styling without copying. Since you’re moving in with VW give it some of Audi’s AWD and handling prowess while still keeping an overall Ford Characteristic. You want customers, make cars that spark emotion, that have feeling, that are attainable and allow the customer to have a connection. Innovation means nothing without customers. Your bean counters will run out of beans to count if your customers aren’t happy and they spend their money elsewhere. Everything I’ve mentioned is stuff that Ford already has in their inventory so it isn’t like they’d be trying to pull rabbits out of hats. Just do what they’ve already done but this time do it better.

  2. trailhiker

    I’d wait to see what the Bronco brings. I don’t think desert stormers need a 4-door truck with a long wheelbase.


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