- Jeep Gladiator: Functionality of a pickup with the looks of a Wrangler.
- Honda Ridgeline: Increased capability; new looks.
2021 Jeep Gladiator
2021 Jeep Gladiator Base Price: $35,040 / Read our 2021 Jeep Gladiator Review
What we like: A true off-road vehicle; convertible roof; a pickup truck with near class-leading towing capacity.
What we would change: solid axles make a rough ride; boxy interior; plenty of road noise.
Overview: The 2021 Jeep Gladiator offers the functionality of a pickup truck with the look and toughness of a Jeep Wrangler. It is a typical mid-size truck player with four-door body, a five-foot bed and seating for five.
What’s new for 2021: Now available with a diesel engine; full-time 4WD with low range gearing; 80th Anniversary and Willys versions join the lineup.
Features and technology: Every Gladiator comes with four-wheel drive, a five-foot bed, a removable top, and a fold-down windshield. Power comes from a 3.6-liter v6 making 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. A 6-speed manual transmission is standard while an 8-speed automatic is also available. A 260 hp 3.0-liter diesel V6 is optional in Sport, Overland, and Rubicon models. Generating 260 hp and 442 lb-ft of torque, it is available solely with an 8-speed automatic transmission. Step up in the lineup from the base Sport model and receive power windows, 18-inch wheels in the Overland. Move to the Rubicon to receive an electronic locking differential, Fox off-road shocks, part-time 4×4, and much more.
What does the future hold: Expect mild refreshes for the next couple of years because the Gladiator is a relatively new vehicle. See Jeep Gladiators for sale near you
2021 Honda Ridgeline
2021 Honda Ridgeline Standard Crew Cab starting price: $36,000 EST / Read our 2021 Honda Ridgeline Review
What we like: Quick acceleration from smooth V6 power; refined ride; roomy standard crew cab; multifunction tailgate; in-bed trunk.
What we would change: Not for deep woods off-roading; FWD tows 3,500 pounds; AWD is 5,000-pound tow-capable.
Overview: The 2021 Honda Ridgeline features one of the smoothest rides in the segment. Some capabilities are less than other mid-sized rigs, but the Ridgeline is a fuel-efficiency leader. Seriously, though, we would feel guilty getting it dirty.
What’s new for 2021: The 2021 Ridgeline is new from the windshield pillars forward. A new Honda Performance Development (HPD) package tarts up the appearance a bit, with flared fenders, a blacked-out grille, and new 18-inch wheels. Small changes inside include a revised infotainment system.
Features and technology: The Honda Ridgeline is fresh with a restyling for 2021. Power is delivered by an award-winning 3.5-liter 280-hp V6 engine producing 262 lb-ft of torque. This Honda’s standard nine-speed automatic transmission delivers power to the front-wheel-drive system, while AWD is an available option. Ridgeline jumps off the line quickly and scores similar mileage that other mid-sized trucks get from a diesel powerplant.
This truck is well-behaved thanks to its unibody construction with coil spring independent rear suspension. This helps it drive like a car or SUV rather than a body-on-frame truck. That’s also one of the reasons this Honda is less robust off-road than some of its heartier competitors.
Inside an 8-inch touchscreen display along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto bring the party. Specific models can be ordered with an in-bed audio system which will liven up any tailgate party.
What the future holds: Unconfirmed rumors suggest a Ridgeline Hybrid might appear later in 2021 as a 2022 model. Find a 2021 Jeep Gladiator for sale near you
Gladiator vs. Ridgeline: Strengths Comparison
Jeep Gladiator benefits: True off-road capability with a pickup bed behind you
Honda Ridgeline benefits: Car-like ride; very comfortable interior; decent fuel efficiency
2021 Jeep Gladiator vs 2021 Honda Ridgeline: Which is better?
They are almost catering to two different buyers. A Gladiator owner is going to play hard and get it dirty before the day is done, while a Ridgeline owner is thinking of urban or suburban pursuits instead. For all its capability, our choice is the 2021 Jeep Gladiator!
|2021 Jeep Gladiator||2021 Honda Ridgeline|
|Engine||3.6-liter V6||3.5-liter V6|
|Horsepower||285 hp @ 6,400 rpm||280 hp @ 6,000 rpm|
|Torque||260 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm||262 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm|
|Transmission||6-speed manual 4WD||9-speed automatic|
|Fuel Economy||19 mpg (17 city/22 highway)||22 mpg (19 city/26 highway)|
|Also Available||3.0-liter Diesel V6; 8-speed automatic 4WD.||AWD|
|Warranty||3years/36,000 miles||3 years/36,000 miles|
|Powertrain Warranty||5 years/60,000 miles||5 years/60,000 miles|
|NHTSA Safety Rating||4 star||5 star|
|Max Seating Capacity||5||5|
|Wheelbase||137.3 inches||125.2 inches|
|Overall Length||218 inches||210.0 inches|
|Height||75 inches||70.2 inches|
|Turning Diameter||44.5 feet||44.4 feet|
|Headroom, Front||42.8 inches||40.1 inches|
|Headroom, Rear||42.8 inches||38.8 inches|
|Legroom, Front||41.2 inches||40.9 inches|
|Legroom, Rear||38.3 inches||36.7 inches|
|Shoulder Room, Front||55.7 inches||62 inches|
|Shoulder Room, Rear||55.7 inches||61.5 inches|
|EPA Passenger Volume||103 cubic feet||109.7 cubic feet|
|Payload Capacity||1,109 pounds||1,465 pounds|