Pictures have surfaced of Jeep’s highly-anticipated mega-SUV, with blurry teaser images of the Jeep Grand Cherokee-dwarfing car being snapped at a recent Jeep dealer conference in the USA.
The full image shows what appears to be Jeep’s future lineup, with the upper-large SUV – which is expected to wear the Grand Wagoneer name – capping off a five-car lineup that includes the Jeep Renegade, the all-new JL Wrangler, the Cherokee mid-sizer and the Grand Cherokee.
The recently-revealed Compass is conspicuously absent.
Only the nose and tail of each car is shown, and shadows obscure some details. However, if the images are all to scale – and they appear to be – then the Grand Wagoneer is going to be absolutely gigantic.
Substantially wider and taller than the Grand Cherokee, the Grand Wagoneer will also be much longer as well, finally allowing Jeep to add a three-row SUV to its lineup and do battle with other supersized SUVs in the USA like the Chevrolet Tahoe, Cadillac Escalade and Ford Expedition.
In Australia its most obvious rivals would be the 200-series Toyota LandCruiser and Y62 Nissan Patrol. However musings from Fiat-Chrysler’s global executives indicate that Jeep may position the Grand Wagoneer as a more upmarket proposition.
Rather than Toyota and Nissan, the big Jeep could instead battle the Audi Q7, Mercedes-Benz GLS and Range Rover.
Jeep’s Grand Wagoneer project has been talked about openly by the head of Jeep Mike Manley for a number of years, with the executive keen to see a larger model sitting above the Grand Cherokee as a premium flagship model. Unlike uniquely American models like the Escalade and Expedition, Manley sees the Grand Wagoneer playing a more global role for Jeep, particularly in Europe.
But where does that leave us? Appetite for hulking seven-seat offroaders is strengthening in the premium segment, with sales in the luxury Large SUV and Upper-Large SUV segments growing by 18.9 and 55.1 percent respectively this year.
With Manley on the record as saying a six-figure-plus pricetag as being realistic for the Grand Wagoneer, Jeep could be in a good position to tap into some of that local demand.
However, Jeep Australia declined to comment on the Grand Wagoneer when queried by Wheels, and with a right-hook version still yet to be confirmed there’s still no clarity on whether it will come to our shores.
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