Jeep introduces the Willys moniker on the Gladiator now, and as expected, it is off-road-oriented

While special editions are a nice thing to have, an overdose of them isn’t taken too well. Not long ago, Jeep introduced anniversary editions on many of its vehicles, and now, it has come up with another one for the Gladiator. This one is called the Gladiator Willys. Willys models in Jeeps have a different fan-base altogether, so we’ll let Jeep off the hook for this one. The pickup truck comes with a lot of off-road equipment in this edition, and it will be an exciting one for the folks who found the standard Gladiator a little too plain-Jane as per Jeep’s standards. Will this qualify to become a standard trim in the future?

What’s Special About The Jeep Gladiator Willys?

2021 Jeep Gladiator Willys Exterior
- image 945045

The Gladiator Willys doesn’t feature any drivetrain changes.

It is powered by the same Pentastar mill that is found under the hood of the other Gladiator models. It is a 3.6-liter, V-6 engine that makes 285 horses and 360 pound-feet of torque.

It is mated to a six-speed manual as standard, but can be had with an eight-speed automatic gearbox as well. As part of the off-road equipment, Jeep has equipped the Gladiator Willys with Command-Trac four-wheel-drive system with a two-speed transfer case and a 2.72:1 low-range ratio.

2021 Jeep Gladiator Willys Exterior
- image 945050

On the outside, the truck comes with Willys hood decal, a gloss-black sport grille, and a 4WD tailgate decal. Since all Gladiators are trail-rated, the same badge can be seen here as well. It rides on 17-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in 32-inch BFGoodrich KM2 mud-terrain tires. The truck is based on the Sport S trim, so it doesn’t come with a whole of features inside the cabin. However, Jeep has equipped it with the Technology Group, which means it comes with a host of connected services, along with a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system. Apart from this, the Gladiator Willys will come with all-weather slush mats as well.

This special edition will be available in eight different colors to choose from:

  • Black
  • Granite Crystal
  • Sting Gray
  • Billet
  • Firecracker Red
  • White
  • Hydro Blue
  • Snazzberry
2021 Jeep Gladiator Willys Exterior
- image 945049
Jeep has priced this model at $35,265 plus $1,495 destination, which brings the total to $36,760.

Surprisingly, this is cheaper than the Sport S – the trim it is based on. The 2021 Gladiator Sport S, starts at $38,080. The Gladiator Willys is available for sale already. There’s no word on it being a limited-volume truck, though.

Sidd Dhimaan
Associate Editor and Truck Expert - sidd@topspeed.com
Sidd joined the Topspeed.com team in 2017 as an intern and in less than a year he earned a full-time position as an associate editor and junior automotive expert. He is currently our pickup truck expert and focuses his attention on heavy-duty and off-road vehicles.  Read More
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The Jeep® brand is introducing a new edition of the 2021 Jeep Gladiator in the form of the Willys models, delivering a new level of personalized content for a distinct appearance that is combined with legendary Jeep 4x4 capability.

“Building on the widely popular Wrangler Willys, we’re thrilled to announce the Willys model is joining the Gladiator lineup as another way for Jeep to connect with our customers,” said Jim Morrison, Head of Jeep Brand - North America. “Gladiator Willys models harken back to the original Jeep lineup while offering an aggressive look and additional increased capability.”

Jeep Gladiator Willys models are available for ordering and in Jeep showrooms now.

Jeep Gladiator Willys
The 2021 Jeep Gladiator lineup is bolstered by the addition of the Willys edition and marks the first time it is available on Gladiator. The Gladiator Willys edition features a limited-slip rear differential, Rubicon cab rock rails and shocks, and 32-inch BFGoodrich KM2 mud terrain tires. These features, combined with Jeep’s Command-Trac 4x4 part-time, two-speed transfer case with a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio, bolster the Gladiator Willys’ off-road capability.

This added capability is highlighted by a rugged appearance. Special exterior design cues feature a Willys hood decal, heritage 4WD tailgate decal, unique black 17-inch aluminum wheels with gray pad print and a gloss black sport grille. All-weather slush mats are also standard. The Sport S based Gladiator Willys also includes standard Technology Group with 7-inch radio with connective services and Convenience Group.

The 2021 Jeep Gladiator, engineered from the ground up to be the most off-road capable Jeep truck ever, builds on a rich heritage of tough, dependable Jeep trucks with an unmatched combination of rugged utility, authentic Jeep design, open-air freedom, clever functionality and versatility.

Equipped with the proven 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and a versatile cargo box, Gladiator is built to handle the demands of an active lifestyle while delivering an open-air driving experience in a design that is unmistakably Jeep. Combining traditional Jeep attributes with strong truck credentials, the Jeep Gladiator is a unique vehicle capable of taking passengers and cargo anywhere.

All Gladiator models are Trail Rated with a badge indicating that the vehicle is designed to perform in a variety of challenging off-road conditions identified by five key consumer-oriented performance categories: traction, ground clearance, maneuverability, articulation and water fording.

The Gladiator Willys edition is available in eight colors: Black, Granite Crystal, Sting Gray, Billet, Firecracker Red, White, Hydro Blue and Snazzberry.

The 2021 Jeep Gladiator Willys has a starting MSRP of $35,265 (plus $1,495 destination) and is available now.

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