2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer — They say that history tends to repeat itself. In fashion, music and even automobiles. Of course that isn’t always a positive. In terms of cars, let’s think back to the 1980’s and how many cars sported the wood exterior … because having your car made of wood was definitely en vogue back then. No one has ever come up with a good explanation as to why that was, but then, the 1980’s were full of questionable ideas. Cars like the original Dodge Caravan and Buick Roadmaster station wagon sported the wood exterior. But the king of the wood trim was by far and away the Jeep Wagoneer, and though it was discontinued in 1991, it did make a reappearance in the mid-90’s, but has been laying dormant for the last 17 years.
But for 2022, Jeep is bringing back the big family hauler, sans the tree-trim. The world is turning into an SUV driven (no pun intended) market and Jeep is throwing its weight around to stay on the forefront of the sales race. With the Wagoneer, Jeep makes a strong case for being back in the three-row SUV game. Some savvy SUV shoppers might notice that the Grand Cherokee L is also a three row SUV made by Jeep, but buy comparison, the Wagoneer is significantly larger — 6.3-inches wider and nearly 10-inches longer, which translates into more space for passengers as well as their cargo. Being a true 8-passenger hauler, the Wagoneer checks in at about 6,000 pounds give or take about 200 pounds depending on drivetrain choice.
Speaking of drivetrain, another bonus of taking the Wagoneer over the Grand Cherokee L is in the engine. The GC-L comes standard with the mundane 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, and has the option to upgrade to a 5.7-liter V8. But the Wagoneer comes standard with that same 5.7-liter Hemi V8 that gets nicely complimented by Chrysler’s eTorque mild hybrid system to help boost power to a total of 392-horsepower and 404 lb-ft of torque which is a significant upgrade over the GC-L’s power. That power gets routed through a smooth shifting 8-speed automatic and then to your choice of either rear- or all-wheel drive.
While it may not have Rubicon-level off-road capability, it still manages to keep the Jeep name proud. The 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer offers up a very off-road ready 25-degree approach and 24-degree departure angle as well as a 22-degree breakover angle. The Quadra-Lift air suspension can raise up group clearance an additional two inches for a total of 10, which is pretty impressive by any standard this side of a Hummer H1. While no one is buying a Wagoneer to race (presumably), it is good to know that 0-60 will take only about 6.5 seconds if you should ever need to get up and go on a random on-ramp to catch up to traffic.
Inside, the 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer is light-years ahead of the old wood-grain. The driver and passenger each have their own infotainment setups, and there are two more rear-seat entertainment screens that can be synced up with Amazon Fire TV and Alexa. The Uconnect system is also compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while wireless charging and a plethora of USB ports all help passengers stay pleasantly distracted.
Jeep also has said that new buyers will be able to have 24/7 customer support and select maintenance at no charge for up to five years. That’s not bad especially when you consider the already reduced price by comparison to the far more expensive Grand Wagoneer that can cost well over six-figures when optioned out to the gills. The Wagoneer chimes in at a very reasonable $59,995 which puts it right in the mix with other competitors like the Ford Expedition and Chevrolet Tahoe.
And though its been nearly two decades since we’ve seen a Jeep Wagoneer drive off a production line, it’s nice to see that sometimes history does repeat itself. But thankfully, this time around, Jeep elected to skip the wood trim.