A new Range Rover-rivaling Jeep Grand Wagoneer has been teased and rumored for some five years now. But today we finally have a glimpse of what Fiat Chrysler’s ultra-lux SUV will actually look like: chunky, mean, and much larger than the Grand Cherokee.
(UPDATE: A reader pointed out that this might actually be the next-generation Grand Cherokee. I still don’t think that makes sense, since it’d be inconsistent with the rest of the image, but it’s a possibility worth acknowledging!)
These images are from same banner some sneak grabbed pictures of at an FCA dealer’s meeting which also included the new-Wrangler teaser shot you’re seeing floating around today.
I see a very wide and aggressive front clip, extremely squat interpretation of the signature seven-slat Jeep grille, LED lights and a stern that seems to call heavily to Grand Cherokee for inspiration.
No wood paneling in sight, sadly.
We know the Grand Wagoneer is supposed to slot above the Grand Cherokee in terms of size and price, and last I heard it was headed for a 2018 release. As for how far “above” we’re talking, Jeep CEO Michael Manley now famously told Auto Express last month:
“...pushing the car up to $130,000 to $140,000 may be possible, but we need to establish Grand Wagoneer in its own right first. That’s why I wouldn’t say there’s price ceiling.”
I think he landed on that number because that’s about the most you can pay for an off-the-shelf Range Rover in the U.S. right now, and that vehicle is the Grand Wagoneer’s presumed target.
“When I see a Range Rover on the street, my blood boils, because we should be able to do a thing like that,” Fiat Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne reportedly told Bloomberg last year. Looks like his company is following through.
As for the new SUV’s relative size, the “teaser image” conveniently had the Grand Cherokee and Cherokee right next to the big guy:
As you can see, the Grand Wagoneer’s headlights and hood are significantly higher than the former-flagship Grand Cherokee’s.
Automotive News says that the Grand Wagoneer will be built on a “stretched version of the next-generation Grand Cherokee platform,” but no mechanical details have been really confirmed.
Jeep has been seriously heating up in terms of sales (though the numbers are questionable) and international brand cache lately. The company could be in a position to create a bona fide Range Rover rival in the near future. At least let’s hope it goes that way. The last time Jeep tried to make a massive SUV, well, nobody cared.
I’m sure that’s one of the reasons the company is looking to revive an old nameplate instead of trying another new one.