Jeep Gladiator Wins 2020 Mint 400
Mel Wade’s seven-slotted, solid-axle truck races to a First place finish.
Mel Wade and Aleksander Tonkovich piloted a Jeep Gladiator to win the Stock Production Truck class in the 2020 Mint 400 desert race in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Because winning the Mint 400 is more about endurance than pure speed, Wade and Tonkovich found the Jeep Gladiator was well-equipped for the 400-mile desert track. The truck ran on 35-inch Nitto Trail Grappler tires and KMC wheels at each end of the Gladiator's stock Dana 44 axles. Wade credited the solid front axle, which allowed him to "push it a little harder" throughout the race.
The frontend was trussed and movement was damped with King bypass shocks, while a PSC hydraulic assist ram helped aim the tires. A Warn bumper, LED lights from KC Lights, JE Reel drivelines, and EVO Manufacturing's 2.5-inch Enforcer system worked together to get Wade and Tonkovich across the line.
With the powertrain left unmodified, completing the Mint 400 was a demonstration of the Gladiator's ruggedness and the dedication of the vehicle's engineers. Wade and Tonkovich finished the race in six hours, 46 minutes.
Check out video coverage of the race HERE