There has been lots of buzz around the return of one of the most venerable nameplates in Jeep history. The resurrected Jeep Wagoneer promises to elevate the brand into the ranks of luxury SUV makers, while simultaneously delivering the renowned go anywhere capability upon which the brand’s reputation hinges. To help better acquaint you with the new model, here are some key things to know about the Jeep Wagoneer.
A Storied Ancestry
While the name “Wagoneer” goes all the way back to 1963, the concept upon which the model is based traces its roots to the 1946 Willys Jeep Station Wagon. Meanwhile, the name “Jeep” is derived from the military nomenclature “GP”, which was applied to the vehicle because it was designated as a “general purpose” automobile. But we digress. That 1946 Kaiser is credited with giving birth to the luxury SUV niche — although the term “SUV” wouldn’t be coined until the 1980s, some 30-odd years later. One of the longest-running nameplates in automotive history, the descendants of that original Wagoneer stayed in production until 1991.
Full Off-Road Capability
Jeep has an edict that every vehicle fronting the seven-slot grille should be able to hold its own on the extremely rugged Rubicon Trail, in the California mountain range known as the Sierra Nevada. To ensure this for the Wagoneer, its designers went with traditional body-on-frame construction to give the robustness it needs to meet this edict. Moreover, the Wagoneer will offer a choice of three four-wheel-drive systems so buyers can tailor the capabilities of the Wagoneer to their specific needs. Jeep’s Quadra lift air suspension system will allow for the provision of up to 10 inches of ground clearance.
Yes, we know that word conjures visions of hyper-mileage gas-savers. And, in fact, the Jeep Wagoneer eTorque hybrid assist package does help the SUV achieve better fuel economy. However, it also endows the powertrain with more get up and goes. The Wagoneer’s 5.7-liter V8 is supplemented by an electric motor to produce 392 horsepower and 404 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission funnels the powertrain’s output to all four wheels. Even better, there’s no need to buy expensive premium fuel to get this level of performance. 89 octane is recommended, but the Jeep also runs nicely on regular gas too.
Two Wheelbase Choices
There will both long- and short-wheelbase iterations of the vehicle. Short wheelbase models will be known as “Wagoneer”, while the long-wheelbase version will be dubbed “Grand Wagoneer”. Both will offer three rows of seats, however, the Grand Wagoneer will provide even more legroom, as well as greater cargo capacity.
Wood Still Figures In
One of the most notable hallmarks of the original Wagoneer models was their wood-trimmed exterior panels. The material was first applied as a narrow detail piece running the full length of the vehicle in 1966. For 1977, both sides of the vehicle got full wood laminates on the front fenders, all four doors, the rear fenders, and the tailgate. This carried over all the way to 1991. The 2022 model will once again feature lots of wood trim. However, it will be confined to the interior of the vehicle this time. Cut by hand, Satin American Walnut will be fitted to the interior of both versions of the Wagoneer.
Luxury Does Too
Chief among a number of other key things to know about the Jeep Wagoneer is the fact t it will be positioned as a premium product right alongside Lincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade. However, unlike those products, the Wagoneer will be capable of taming even the most rugged trails with ease.