The head of design at Jeep admits the Gladiator is “not pretty” thanks to its “odd” proportions but adds the double-cab bakkie is nonetheless “pretty cool”.

Mark Allen, head of Jeep Design, told it was challenging to design the Wrangler-based bakkie.

“From the middle of the truck forward was carryover [from the Wranlger Unlimited]. It took us a long time to stomach the proportions. The Gladiator is odd when you stare at it in profile,” he said.

“I incorrectly predicted that having a convertible top on a pick-up would be dumb. But now, it’s my favourite feature. I say this a lot: it’s not pretty but it’s pretty cool."

Revealed as long ago as November 2018 at the Los Angeles Auto Show, the Gladiator is offered with the brand’s familiar 3,6-litre Pentastar V6 engine, mated to a six-speed manual transmission as standard, with an eight-speed automatic transmission available as an option.

In January 2020, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles South Africa told the Gladiator bakkie was “not yet” on the cards for the local market.