Jeep Asks Customers If It Should Build A Regular Cab Gladiator Like This ‘JTe’

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Jeep is too chicken to sell a truck like this “JTe,” which was built by custom-Jeep fab company Unofficial Use Only and revealed by my go-to Jeep parts company Quadratec at the SEMA show in Las Vegas this week. I’m saying this because, as has been scientifically proven via years of fifth-grade gym-class conflict resolution studies, if you call someone too chicken to do something, they have to do it. There’s no other option. I’m hoping my strategy works, because Jeep just asked the public if it should build a two-door Gladiator, and now everyone’s hopes are up. Don’t ruin our dreams, Jeep. It’s not worth it.

I just got back from SEMA, where I briefly hung out with the folks at Quatratec, where I often buy Jeep parts when I can’t find them at the junkyard, on Facebook marketplace, or buried in my backyard somewhere. The company has on display a “JTe,” which was built by custom-Jeep shop Unofficial Use Only. I don’t know much about it or its founder Greg Henderson, but I am familiar with some of his SEMA builds, including the YJL:

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Image: Quadratec

And the XJ-nosed Jeep JK called “Project Pathkiller“:

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Image via Quadratec

And actually, I saw Henderson at an off-road event at Rocks & Valleys in Michigan around eight years ago. There, he was auctioning off his TJ Unlimited-Wrangler-based “Frankenbrute” Jeep build for charity:

Anyway, this year, Henderson brought a two-door Gladiator to SEMA, and Jeep has been posting about it on Instagram.

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“Half the doors, all the fun,” writes the company in a caption. That’s right, Jeep. You get it!

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The Instagram Stories post above is the primary subject of this article. “Are we missing something?” the caption reads. “Should we add a 2-door Gladiator to our lineup” reads a poll below.

First off, the answer to both questions is: Obviously! We all know that the four-door Gladiator looks a bit weird around that C-pillar, plus it’s too damn big to be great off-roading. Seriously, watch the Jeep truck try dragging its oversized arse over the Rubicon Trail; it ain’t pretty:

 

This two-door just looks right, and it’d be the most capable off-road pickup on the market, by far.

I hope Jeep realizes that just asking that question about building a regular-cab Gladiator is dangerous, and I’m praying it wasn’t just posted by a 21 year-old social media intern. These are hopes and dreams we’re dealing with, here, Jeep. If you’re going to ask that question, you better be serious!

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Eighty-eight percent of people are onboard with a Henry VIII Gladiator (get it, Tudor?), though I can’t help but wonder what the heck is going on in the head of the folks in the 12 “no” bracket. Surely they’re just old-timers who don’t know how to work an “app,” right? I hope so; otherwise, they should seek counseling.

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Image via Quadratec

Anyway, a bit more about the SEMA truck. The “JTe” actually started out as a plug-in hybrid Wrangler 4Xe Rubicon; it got chopped up, and a stretched version of the factory Gladiator bed was mounted behind the cab. Here, let Quadratec break it down:

Built by renowned Jeep fabricator Greg Henderson at Unofficial Use Only, the JTe began life as a 2022 Jeep Wrangler 4Xe Rubicon, and was cut behind the front doors before a factory Gladiator truck bed and factory Mopar body replacement panels were added. The JTe is clad in custom “Quadratec” green paint by Red’s Bodyworks and has been equipped with top-of-the-line performance parts and recovery gear to transform it into a true, trail clean-up support vehicle.

[…]

…its bed is 10.5-inches longer than a standard Gladiator, which will provide plenty of space for Tread Lightly! trail project cleanups over the next two years.”

The Quadratec “JTe” is outfitted with a Lynx 2.5-inch Suspension Lift with adjustable control arms and Steersmarts steering components. It features bronze 17-inch Lynx TrailGunner wheels wrapped in 37-inch Nitto Recon Grappler tires for improved performance over rough terrain and upgraded Carnivore front and rear bumpers.

It looks great both inside and out. Here’s a closer look, via the Jeep parts supplier:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Quadratec (@quadratec)

The best part of the Jeep is on the inside — specifically on the doorcards. My friend Liam, a young engineer who may or may not have been involved in the development of the JL Wrangler’s interior door trim, saw a pain point in the JL ownership experience. Specifically, he and many others noticed that the netting on the doors very often got caught on an occupant’s boot as they disembarked from the vehicle. Even when that didn’t happen, storing even fairly-lightweight items in that netting stretched it out, and made it look janky.

So Liam’s manufactured some plastic netting replacements — little storage cubbies that don’t hold a ton, but look great and offer some flexibility. No, not the literal kind like the netting does, the figurative kind since the product has provisions that allow one to snap on accessories. Here, have a look at me shamelessly shilling for my friend:

 

Anyway, the point here is: JL owners, support Liam by commenting on the Instagram post above if you’re tired of getting your boot caught in your door netting. And Jeep, just build the damn two-door. Offer it in green with a tan top and tan half-door uppers, and the world will be right. Don’t tease us like this.

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65 Responses

  1. I think the earlier J6 concept looked even better. But yeah, it will sell for 2 model years and likely get the axe for too little sales. I don’t love the gigantic tall and long 4 door truck craze, but it is the entire market now.

  2. This isn’t the first time Jeep fans have been teased to the point of agony with a potential 2-door pickup. I seem to recall someone marketing a 2-door pickup based on the J8 CKD (which was intended for foreign military or municipal use). And at the time, Jeep solicited feedback on whether anyone would be interested in such a thing, even though a desire for that very thing had been the subject of about 50% all posts on Jeep forums for 15 years. Eventually the Gladiator came out of it, so it was not all bad news, but it also wasn’t *quite* what people had been talking about.

    My take: It would do well. Don’t think of it as having to compete with other Jeeps for showroom attention. This vehicle would be the ONLY choice for anyone who wanted a 2-door midsize truck for any reason. They wouldn’t all need to have Rubicon gear; I could see tons of base versions selling to farmers, maintenance fleets, haulers — basically whatever industries used to buy 2-door pickups, but no longer can.

  3. I own a 2012 Jeep / Mopar JK-8 conversion. One of the few kits that made it on to a vehicle. I have owned it now 8 years and it is a bit different than this recent concept. The bed is short, no way you would get a motorcycle in it, and there is some space behind the seats but it is difficult to access and almost useless. But I didn’t buy it for utility….I bought it for fun and it has been a blast. Been to the Alpine Loop, Moah and Route 66 and it is an almost perfect road trip vehicle especially with a Bestop Sunrider. If I could figure out how to post a picture I would. The conversion on mine, for the original owner, was a total cost of about $57K. I figure this concept truck is going to be a bunch more in terms of total cost.

  4. It would be great if they did, but they wouldnt sell much, production would be restricted to focus capacity on the 4-doors, and dealers would slap $25,000 ADMs on the ones that made it out, further chasing away buyers. Also, Ive heard there’s some sort of weird stigma developing in contemporary Jeeper culture where buyers of the normal 2-door Wranglers are looked down on for buying the “cheap one” instead of the Unlimited, which is the bigger seller by a wide margin. Just seems like Jeep buyers today aren’t really a 2-door crowd like they were in past decades

  5. As a current Comanche owner, this is the the vehicle I’ve been asking for. Actually I liked the J6 concept of a couple years ago more but the point is, I want a 2 door pickup based on the 4 door Wrangler chassis. 6.5ft bed sounds perfect.
    As it stands now, I love my 1990 Jeep Comanche Eliminator with it’s perfect sized 2 door cab, 6 ft bed and narrow track. It’s a 4.0L 5 speed stick 4×4 with an LSD Dana 44 rear axle. More or less the perfect truck for running around town and hauling small to medium sized loads. I have no need for a 4 seat vehicle, but do need a truck to work on my property. I genuinely dislike large vehicles, they are just difficult to handle.

  6. I like it, but I’d rather see a gladiator cab used as a short wheebase jeep, like a modern cj5 with 4 doors? I guess. You could have just half a wheel arch in the rear with other half of the wheel just being out there. It would effectively eliminate the departure angle as a consideration.

  7. I mean the proliferation of EVs is great, and making existing popular models (Like the F150) electric is also great, but a Jeep? A pavement princess sure, but off road with an EV seems dicey. Nearly every off road vehicle (even the posers) I have seen have jerry cans for fuel, do they make jerry cans for electrons?
    What happen when you run out of volts in the middle of nowhere, pop open your solar array and drink your own pee until you can charge enough to get back?

  8. A few years ago Jeep showed the J6 concept. It was a two-door with a 6 ft. bed. If the link isn’t thrown away, it’s here on the Wrangler forum:

    https://wranglertjforum.com/threads/the-jeep-j6-a-two-2-door-jeep-truck-concept-for-ejs-2019.20739/

    This is a tamer version of the JT, and a lot of people would love to have one. Myself included. But as truck manufacturers have influenced buyers that an ‘all-in-one’ vehicle is the norm, they’ve pushed these four-door trucks onto the public, to maximize their profits, and ensure easier production. Ever see a two-door truck recently? It’s stretched because it’s on a four-door truck platform.

    I’d encourage people to not comment on an Instagram post. It’ll not be as effective as writing an email to the company with your intentions. Tell them if they make it you’ll buy it. Don’t believe me? I told Dodge I’d buy a Challenger if they made it, I’m pretty sure there must have been a lot more emails than mine as they did build it, and I have one in my garage.

    Regardless, I’m keeping my two-door Dakota until it rusts away completely. They just don’t make trucks like that any more.

  9. This is one of those it’s cool but no one will buy it situations. Regular cab trucks used to be cheap enough that people could buy those and a regular car for family stuff. Those days are long gone and a regular cab just doesn’t make sense as it severely handicaps this beyond truck stuff. If they make it, cool!, but I suspect they’ll ultimately cancel it due to lack of sales.

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