1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck Looks Marvelous After 5-Year Restoration

Codenamed SJ, the two-door Gladiator was produced from 1962 to 1988 by no fewer than four automakers. The full-size pickup based on the Wagoneer sport utility vehicle proved itself as a military vehicle as well, but that's a story for another time. On this occasion, we'll be talking about an SJ that looks better than it did when it left the assembly line.
1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck 8 photos
Photo: Barrett-Jackson
1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck1970 Jeep Gladiator V8 Pickup Truck
Chassis number 2406W19302168 underwent a five-year complete frame-off restoration, making it one of the nicest Gladiator trucks in existence today. Finished in green paintwork over two-tone brown leather for the interior, no expense was spared in order to bring this J-2000 back to its former glory.

Offered at no reserve by Barrett-Jackson at the Scottsdale 2021 auction, the old-school workhorse rocks a GM Turbo 400 three-speed automatic transmission and disc brakes instead of drums for the front axle. Currently rolling on Fierce Attitude M/T rubber shoes wrapped around Pro Comp 16-inch alloy wheels, the truck retains the original push-button AM radio.

As for the 5.7-liter lump hiding under the hood, the two-barrel Buick Dauntless is a little different from the small-block V8 produced by Chevrolet. The deep-skirt block with increased nickel content comes to mind, along with the longest piston stroke of all 350s from that era. Rated at 230 horsepower when it was new, this engine was discontinued in favor of 5.9- and 6.6-liter AMC options right after Kaiser-Jeep was acquired by American Motors.

“The undercarriage is in good condition,” according to the auction house, which is exactly what you would expect after five years of nut-and-bolt overhauling. All of the glass is clean, the bumpers and badges have been chromed to perfection, and the two-tipped exhaust system is brand-spanking new.

It’s hard to understand why the owner decided to bid farewell to his truck at no reserve, given the money and labor that went into it. On second thought, this truck isn’t exactly a collectible, according to Hagerty. The insurance company says that a concours-condition example is worth $18,700 today, which is about half the price of a base Gladiator for the 2021 model year.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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