When the last Jeep Wagoneer was built in 1991, many of the vehicles that would later take the luxury SUV mantle were not yet on the drawing board. No Lincoln Navigator, no Cadillac Escalade, no Porsche Cayenne. The suggestion of a Ferrari or Lamborghini SUV would have been greeted with laughter or confusion.
Today, few brands lack a luxury SUV entry. With the return of the Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer for the 2022 model year, Jeep brings a familiar badge and silhouette back to a segment it helped to invent. But the technology underneath will be devised to compete for a very different kind of customer in a transformed marketplace. Here are 5 things you need to know about the 2022 Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer.
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1. Two Engines For Two Models
In 2022, the Wagoneer and the Grand Wagoneer will share a platform derived from the Ram 1500 pickup, adding an independent rear suspension for a smoother ride. And they will both feature V8 engines. But the Wagoneer gets a 5.7L V8, good for 392 HP, and the first V8 application of Jeep’s eTorque mild hybrid system. The Grand Wagoneer bumps the displacement to 6.4L and 471 HP. The larger engine should push the eight-seat Jeep to 60 mph in about 6 seconds. Beyond the powerplant and subtle styling cues, the two models differ mainly in the cabin – while the Wagoneer’s interior can be optioned well into luxury territory, the Grand Wagoneer’s extends deep into the opulent range established by some of its European competition.
2. What’s Inside
Speaking of opulence, some fans of the old models were disappointed to find no option to bring back the beloved exterior faux wood trim of the old Wagoneer. They may take heart, though, because the faux wood has become real, and migrated to the interior on the 2022 Grand Wagoneer. Burnished walnut adds a natural look and feel to the doors. Up to seven interior screens span the entire width of the dashboard, along with the rear seats.
3. Where It Can Go
The 2022 Wagoneer will arrive with three available 4×4 systems, capable of fording 24 inches of water, with Jeep’s Quadra-Lift air suspension adding two inches to the Grand Wagoneer’s 8-inch ride height when needed. Approach angle is 25 degrees, departure 24, and breakover 22.
So why isn’t Jeep giving it a Trail Rated badge? Because it’s too big. At 214.7” long by 83.6” wide, the Wagoneer’s footprint overshadows a Yukon or Navigator, and is simply not designed to fit down any trail worthy of the name. With a fully optioned sticker price running deep into six figures, it’s questionable how many owners will want to bash bushes in Grand Wagoneers anyway. On the other hand, with a 10,000-pound towing capacity, there may be few more comfortable off-road capable tow vehicles to get your ATVs to the trailhead with.
4. It Carries A Theatre
Both Wagoneers will debut Amazon’s Fire TV for Auto, allowing passengers to stream content to the Jeeps’ multitude of interior screens. Top end sound system is a McIntosh unit featuring 23 speakers and a 1375-watt amplifier, controlled via the fifth generation of Jeep’s Uconnect system. With their Amazon accounts linked to the vehicle, passengers (or drivers, with the transmission in park) could pause a movie when the Wagoneer arrives home, walk inside, and pick up where they left off – although the audio might be better if they just stay in the Jeep.
5. Why It Doesn’t Say Jeep Anywhere
Zoom in and look for a Jeep logo anywhere, and you will find only the Wagoneer name. Steering column, doors, tailgate, grille – both SUVs rely on the Wagoneer name and familiar picket-fence grille to convince you that they are Jeeps. We’ll have to explore deep into the touchscreen menus to figure out whether there’s a way to display a Jeep logo at all, but take it as a sign of Jeep’s ambition for the models. Mustangs don’t need to tell you they’re Fords, Corvettes don’t need to say Chevrolet, the Bronco sports a single Ford oval on the lower tailgate. Like the Bronco’s debut and now the Mustang Mach E, Jeep will start the Wagoneer with two models, and aim to expand it into a sub-brand.
As to what other Wagoneers might take form, Jeep has made no announcement, though an even larger model is anticipated, and a plug-in hybrid nearly inevitable. So if you’re holding out for that fake wood trim, or perhaps a Hellcat engine, Jeep is not making promises… but nobody has ruled them out either. The folks at WagoneerFans.com will most certainly have all the latest rumors covered.