Jeep Grand Wagoneer Making Itself Known… and Seen
A late — but hopefully (for Fiat Chrysler) not too-late — entry in the full-size SUV segment is drawing closer to fruition, now appearing on Michigan roads wrapped in camo. That vehicle is the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, a boxy ute destined for the top of the Jeep food chain.
While past spy photos have shown a Ram 1500 test mule with an abbreviated back end, the latest shots are the first to show the vehicle in its final prototype form.
We don’t have the shots, but outlets like Motor1 do. Give them a look. Despite the heavy cladding, it seems Jeep’s going for a Grand Cherokee-on-steroids look to ensure the looming luxo-wagon places its pedigree front and center. Just how slanted that rear glass will be remains a mystery.
This being a range topper, interior volume will need to be generous to compete with the likes of the Lincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade.
Beneath the vehicle, see see evidence of an independent rear suspension — the same setup seen on the 1500 test mule. While the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer are expected to utilize a modified 1500 platform, the segment necessitates ride quality above and beyond that of a pickup. This isn’t the ’80s.
Beyond that, little is known about the makeup of these vehicles, besides the obvious assumption that they’ll make use of the 1500’s line of powerplants. It’s expected that FCA will offer a plug-in hybrid option to lower the lumbering beasts’ environmental footprint. The jury’s out on whether the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer will be seperate only in content, or in actual vehicle length. Given that Jeep has a long-wheelbase, three-row version of the Grand Cherokee on the way, as well as the fact that the Wagoneer test mule required a shortened bed, we can wager a guess that the latter is true.
Both SUVs will roll out of FCA’s Warren Truck plant in early 2021, their production greased with $1.5 billion in funding announced in February.
[Image: Fiat Chrysler]
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Really? We wait all this time for a revival of the storied Grand Wagoneer, only to be served up something that looks like a bloated Grand Cherokee? Blecch, no thanks, I'd rather pay for the real thing, restored by Wagonmasters.
Back in 1988, my roommate who had just worked at "Chrysler", with Dick Dauch's son/s over the summer, asked me what I thought of what was essentially the Grand Cherokee. I told him it needed to be an updated successor to the Grand Wagoneer. Especially size-wise. I still think the GC is too small even for two rows, btw. As an aside, I had worked at a Jeep dealership prior to this discussion. He went on to work for Chrysler/FCA; and Ford (US, China, UK).