Jeep has finally taken the covers off its new Grand Wagoneer concept, which previews a production model scheduled to start rolling off the assembly line in Michigan in 2021.
Billed as a “rebirth of a classic and premium American icon”, the concept seems very close to what will go into production.
As a reminder, the original Jeep Wagoneer hit the United States market in 1963 as the first four-wheel-drive vehicle with an automatic transmission. The Grand Wagoneer followed in 1984, adding all sort of luxury.
So, what sort of direction will the new model take? Well, the new Grand Wagoneer concept boasts what Jeep describes as a “wide array of leading-edge premium technology”, including an electrified powertrain (plug-in hybrid, in fact), a choice of three "sophisticated" 4x4 off-road systems and a dash-mounted display for front passenger.
Interestingly, the Grand Wagoneer gains a third row of seats, which means it will seat up to seven. Jeep says the production model will feature air suspension, “unmatched” towing capability and “best-in-class” overall passenger volume. While the original Grand Wagoneer featured plenty of wood on its exterior, the new concept employs genuine heat-treated lacewood inside. So, there’s lots of wood ... and plenty of screens. Seven, in fact.
Yes, the concept features a 12,3-inch instrument cluster, a centrally mounted 12,1-inch touchscreen, a 10,25-inch horizontal touchscreen below that and a 10,25-inch passenger-side display. Need more screens? Well, the second-row boasts a 10,1-inch display on the centre console between the two captain’s chairs, with each passenger also enjoying a 10,1-inch entertainment touchscreen.
“Our new Grand Wagoneer concept marks the first step in the rebirth of Wagoneer – a true and rare premium American icon,” said Christian Meunier, global president of the Jeep brand at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
Ralph Gilles, head of design at FCA, described the original Grand Wagoneer as the “first premium SUV, and its timeless design combined with the soul of Americana helped it achieve an iconic place in many hearts”.
“The Grand Wagoneer concept is inspired by the original, but with a modern interpretation of luxury and freedom. We strived to create an elegant design with a timeless silhouette, featuring countless beautifully crafted details that come together to give it an undeniable presence.
“The Grand Wagoneer Concept’s interior is spacious and features premium materials that accentuate our team’s obsession to detail and celebrates American craftsmanship. A full digital cockpit takes advantage of leading technologies that are beautifully presented with expansive and easy-to-use screens and limited buttons, allowing the focus to be placed on a pleasant and intuitive experience for the driver and passengers,” Gilles said.