Katzkin’s got some fancy leather for Jeep’s returning pickup truck

After more than 30 years on the shelves, the almighty Jeep Gladiator returned to the auto scene at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. Less than a few months later, we now have one of the first custom jobs for the Gladiator courtesy of a company known for making some of the best leather products for car interiors in the market. This, ladies and gentlemen, is Katzkin Leather’s interpretation of the Jeep Gladiator, and it’s an absolute doozy. Comprised mostly of upgrades to the truck’s interior, Katzkin Leather’s work on the Gladiator’s cabin is a visual showcase of the company’s new products. The upholstery package is one of the many options that Katzkin is offering through Mopar, complementing the menu of accessories and options that are already available for Jeep’s returning conqueror. Katzkin’s show of force on the Gladiator was on full display at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show.

What Makes the Jeep Gladiator By Katzkin Special

2019 Jeep Gladiator By Katzkin Leather
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It’s a dawn of a new age in the land of pickups, folks. The long-slumbering Jeep Gladiator has finally woken up with its eyes sets on segment domination. It’s got an uphill climb, for sure, but with companies like Katzkin Leather on its side, the Gladiator is returning to the market with guns blazing. One of the many interesting aspects of the Jeep Gladiator is the level of customization that’s available to the market. Stamping your own personality on your own Gladiator is as pretty easy, too. Mopar rolled out its lineup of accessories for the truck as soon Jeep unveiled it in Los Angeles back in November 2018. Any and every functional tool you can install in the Gladiator is available through Mopar. Off-road LED lights? Check. Winch-capable steel bumpers? No problem. Bed-mounted cross rails? Don’t even worry about it.

As intriguing as it is to see the Gladiator carrying all this equipment, it’s not immune to a little vanity touch-up, too. That’s where Katzkin comes into the picture.

The company is an established partner of Mopar, as it has been for more than 15 years. “Katzkin is the only custom-focused leather interior manufacturer partnered with OEMs, and our Jeep-specific programs are only getting more creative,” said David Johnson, director of OEM development for Katzkin. “We’ve had the opportunity to work with the Mopar and the FCA Design Team to create complete customization packages for consumers that include stitching patterns, multiple color selections, nameplate logos, and unique textures that open the channels to a customer’s true personality and blending it directly with the vehicle – it’s a very exciting time.”

2019 Jeep Gladiator By Katzkin Leather
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That partnership was on full display at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show when Jeep rolled out a unique Sting Gray Jeep Gladiator that featured an interior that’s dressed to the nines in Katzkin leather. Mind you; this isn’t just your typical leather option, either. The Sting Gray Gladiator arrived in Chicago with an interior covered in Katzkin’s Tuscany Ink leather, a type of leather that looks about as clean and as smooth as a baby’s posterior.

The leather itself stands out, but it pops out even more with the offset materials included in the package. Katzkin’s famous “hex tech” inserts and the Lt. Tungsten contrast stitching completes the interior leather package.

The honeycomb-like insert is located in the center of the seat, just below the stitched version of Jeep’s distinctive grille logo. Just by looking at the inserts, you know that it looks really comfortable. And for what it’s worth, I don’t know who Lt. Tungsten is, but if he’s as clean as the white contrast stitching that bears his name, then he must be a very tidy man.

That’s the extent of Katzkin’s new offering for the Jeep Gladiator’s interior. Visually, it’s not something that screams for attention, especially in an auto show setting like the Chicago Auto Show. But Katzkin — and Jeep and Mopar, too — isn’t as interested in showing off in an auto show as it is in making a statement in the Gladiator’s menu of options and accessories. That’s where you’ll find the company’s leather interior option for the Gladiator alongside other useful items for the pickup like a bed storage system, a two-inch lift kit, tonneau covers, and vanity graphics on the hood and sides of the Gladiator.

2019 Jeep Gladiator By Katzkin Leather
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I understand that there’s a bit of irony in offering premium leather on a pickup that was built to get dirty, but life is full of ironies. That doesn’t make them less interesting. If anything, Katzkin’s new leather option for the Gladiator helps give the pickup a premium side that you normally don’t see in a pickup that isn’t afraid to splatter mud and grits all over its body.

Who said the Jeep Gladiator couldn’t have a premium-looking interior to complement its go-everywhere personality?

Not Jeep. Not Mopar. Definitely not Katzkin.

Imagine sitting in a cabin that’s dressed in fancy Katzkin leather as you go out and about in a pickup that’s powered by a 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine that produces 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque and has a pair of 4x4 systems and a maximum towing capacity of 7,600 pounds. That’s what’s in store for you if you get the Jeep Gladiator, and in a matter of months — spring 2019, specifically — you won’t have to imagine it anymore. You can go buy one and option the hell out of it through Mopar.

2020 Jeep Gladiator specifications

Engine 3.6-LITER PENTASTAR V-6
Type and Description 60-degree, V-type, liquid-cooled
Displacement (cu. in. / cc) 220 cu. in. (3,604 cu. cm)
Bore x Stroke 3.78 x 3.27 (96 x 83)
Valve System Chain-driven DOHC, 24 valves and hydraulic end-pivot roller rockers
Fuel Injection Sequential, multiport, electronic, returnless
Construction Aluminum deep-skirt block, aluminum alloy heads
Compression Ratio 11.3:1
Power 285 HP @ 6,400 RPM
Torque 260 LB-FT @ 4,400 RPM

Further reading

2020 Jeep Gladiator Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2020 Jeep Gladiator.

2005 Jeep Gladiator concept
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Jeep Gladiator concept

Read our full review on the 2005 Jeep Gladiator Concept.

When the nation’s largest auto show kicks off later this week in Chicago – February 9-18th at McCormick Place – Katzkin Leather, will have a bold statement within the show’s Mopar display – as the all-new Jeep Gladiator highlights a customized upfit interior package by Katzkin. The Sting Gray Gladiator shows off Katzkin’s rich Tuscany Ink leather interior which is offset with the brand’s ‘hex tech’ inserts and Lt.Tungsten contrast stitching, and is just one of the many customization choices by Katzkin one can receive throughout the Jeep/Mopar brand.

In addition, as a global leader in leather interior transformations, Katzkin will further boast its alignment with the Mopar brand by offering the chance to win an all-new interior for current Jeep owners through an Instagram promotion lead by Chicago’s own resident car expert and beloved radio personality, Paul Brian and his automotive web-series partner, car expert, author, and television host, Lauren Fix, The Car Coach®, The competition highlights Katzkin’s partnership with Mopar which has been in place since 2003, and will be open to all Jeep owners looking to upgrade their 2010 or newer Jeep model with a Katzkin leather interior and showcasing why they ‘need Katzkin.’

According to Doug Johnson, director of OEM development for Katzkin, during the more than a decade-and-a-half partnership, the two brands together have supported nearly every product in the Mopar family ranging from the popular RAM Truck to the pavement-eating Dodge Charger – and for 2019 will specifically include the all-new Gladiator, as well as the popular Jeep Wrangler, RAM Truck, and Illinois-built Jeep Cherokee – a full range of involvement.

“Katzkin is the only custom-focused leather interior manufacturer partnered with OEMs and our Jeep-specific programs are only getting more creative,” said Johnson. “We’ve had the opportunity to work with the Mopar and the FCA Design Team to create complete customization packages for consumers that include stitching patterns, multiple color selections, nameplate logos and unique textures that open the channels to a customer’s true personality and blending it directly with the vehicle – it’s a very exciting time.”

Brian and Fix will be announcing the Instagram competition on their popular YouTube-based web-series ‘His Turn – Her Turn’ and will run the promotion throughout the duration of the Chicago show. All entrants will need to provide a photo of their current Jeep interior and express why they ‘need a new Katzkin interior’ in their vehicle. One winner will be chosen to receive the new transformation, which will be done through a local restyler within their geographic location. All entries must include #katzkinjeep as a hashtag.

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