Tested on and off-road: 2022 Grand Wagoneer
The Wagoneer might instill images of a Jeep family SUV from years gone by, but it has been revived as its own luxury brand of SUV. Last year, we saw the release of its ultra-luxury SUV dubbed the Grand Wagoneer with no Jeep moniker on it. While many of us remember the glory days of the far more rugged Wagoneer from the 70s and 80s, this 2022 model is nothing like it was and is nothing like any Jeep out there. It’s clearly aiming for the likes of the Cadillac Escalade and other top-shelf large SUVs.
The front end of the Wagoneer looks classy with the Wagoneer moniker looking well-stated and the LED headlamps look great and it has a very masculine, bold look. Jeep outfitted it with 22-inch alloy wheels with 285/45/22 tires. Across the side, you’ll see the Grand Wagoneer moniker again, along with the USA flag. There are automatically deployed running boards that drop down when you open a door, to help make getting in and out, easy. The biggest Achilles heel is the back of the Wagoneer. It’s dreadful and very huge. Again, a Grand Wagoneer moniker is in the back but in very large lettering. Its flat back-end is sort of like a Ford Flex – rather polarizing.
Under the hood, you’ll find a 6.4-liter V8 engine that’s good for 471 horsepower and 455 lb-ft of torque. It does have cylinder deactivation technology that shuts down certain cylinders at freeway speeds to help give a boost to the fuel economy. As an option, you can opt for a 5.7-liter V8 that drops power a bit to 392 horsepower with 404 lb-ft of torque. Either engine delivers power to an all-wheel-drive system via an 8-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission. The 5.7-liter engine is mated with a hybrid setup for better fuel economy. Bear in mind, that the 6.4-liter loves gasoline – the EPA gives it a rating of 13mpg around town and 18 on the highway.
Jeep builds the Grand Wagoneer with Jeep pedigree. It’s a body-on-frame design that uses the legendary Quadra-Trac all-wheel-drive system, has height adjustment, and does rather well off-road for a luxury, heavy, huge SUV. In fact, it feels quite nimble off-road given its large footprint.
On the road, the 6.4-liter engine in our test vehicle provided a ton of get-up-and-go. It has the power we love that sets you back in the seat if you floor it off the line. The torque kicks in quickly and the suspension will change its dampening characteristics based on which drive mode is selected.
There’s a slew of safety features, including animal protection, parking sense, rearview cameras, lane keep assist, lane departure warning, front collision braking, airbags all around the cabin, rear cross-traffic alert, pedestrian alert, night vision warning, and blind-spot monitoring.
An interior that pampers you:
Jeep pulled out all of the stops and then some for loading the Wagoneer with technology. In fact, it’s the first vehicle we’ve seen that has an optional passenger-side screen above the glovebox. There’s the U-Connect version 5, 75 total inches of screen display across the entire dashboard – with the optional passenger screen. The center touchscreen is 12 inches and the instrument cluster also doubles as a screen with various data you can select to have shown there. There’s also a camera system that allows the driver to see the passenger areas – something very handy for parents traveling with small children.
Audio is handled by a high-powered McIntosh surround system. McIntosh has a pedigree in home audio that stretches back decades. It’s regularly considered to be one of the premier audio equipment makers. You’ll find the sound quality is stunning and simply engulfs you with audio elegance. There’s a deep, powerful bass response that integrates superbly with the midrange and high frequencies. While we do wish it would go up a bit louder than it does, it’s still more than enough for most people.
Tons of personal space:
There is seating available for up to eight people, however, the best setup is for a seven-passenger configuration as that provides the most comfort. Both front seats are heated/cooled and feature built-in, multi-zone massage. There’s tons of legroom for passengers in the second row and they also have their own screen for climate controls and entertainment. USB and USB-C ports abound and there’s a massive center console between the captain chairs of the second row. Third-row is not the penalty box as we find in so many three-row SUVs. It too has ample legroom for adult passengers as well as charging ports. The front-row center console even features a built-in cooler to help keep beverages cold.
It’s very hard to overstate just how thoughtful Jeep was when putting together the Wagoneer. It’s not only competitive, in so many areas, but it is also the best in class. With tons of available cargo space, features, and technology, you’ll find the Wagoneer is an incredible value in its class.
Check out Lauren’s video review of the Grand Wagoneer: