Jeep has finally handed its Gladiator bakkie a diesel engine, with the V6 oil-burner churning out some 600 N.m.

Revealed late in 2018, the Wrangler-based Gladiator has until now been offered in North America exclusively with the brand’s familiar 3,6-litre Pentastar V6 petrol unit.

Now, however, Jeep has rolled out the third-generation version of its 3,0-litre EcoDiesel V6, which here generates 195 kW and a whopping 600 N.m. The turbodiesel unit is mated with an eight-speed automatic transmission “calibrated” for low-rev shifts.

Diesel versions of the Gladiator are offered with third-generation Dana 44 front and rear heavy-duty axles.

Jeep says the latest iteration of its diesel-flavoured V6, which is produced in Ferrara in Italy, gains a new water-cooled turbocharger, redesigned cylinder head intake ports, an updated exhaust gas recirculation system, slightly lower compression ratio (now 16,0:1) and redesigned high-pressure direct-injection fuel injector nozzles.

At the start of 2020, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles South Africa told CARmag.co.za the Gladiator bakkie was “not yet” on the cards for the local market. Will the availability of a diesel engine see the firm change its mind?