By now, you’re probably familiar with Jeep’s Trail Rated badge. That’s where they take some of their off-road models, and they put them through a battery of tests to determine how proficient they are in off-roading and slow-speed conditions. Over boulders, through trails, over mountains, but not necessarily high-speed desert running. Well, now there’s something new for 2020. It’s the Desert Rated badge. It’s got a new set of tests and a new set of equipment.
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And the first vehicle to wear that Desert Rated badge is this one. This is the 2020 Jeep Gladiator Mojave. It’s a new trim level on the Gladiator, and it’s got a bunch of off-road equipment meant for going quickly across the desert. Now, they’ve changed a bunch of stuff underneath. Let’s have a look at what the new Mojave package brings to the Gladiator.
Jeep created five areas of evaluation for ride control and stability, traction, ground clearance, maneuverability and desert prowess. By comparison, a Trail Rated Jeep must qualify in the areas of water fording, traction, ground clearance, maneuverability and articulation. The Mojave includes a lot of uniquely tuned parts meant specifically to help the truck survive high-speed desert running. Which means jumps and dunes, hard landings and traversing really soft ground. This lifted Gladiator has a 1-inch front lift above a typical Gladiator Sport, putting it half an inch higher in front than the Rubicon and giving it a quarter-inch more overall ground clearance.
There are new, 2.5-inch aluminum internal bypass Fox off-road shock absorbers with remote reservoirs all around, and underneath are skid plates and sand-slider side rails. Also upgraded axles and 10-millimeter steel track bars front and rear have been fitted. Those are the beefiest of any in the Gladiator or Wrangler lineup. The frame has been strategically reinforced, as have the motor mounts. And industry exclusive Fox hydraulic jounce bumpers have been fitted up front to help dampen suspension impacts.
Check out the full video below for the rest of my thoughts.
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