It’s no secret that Jeep is working on a three row (7-seat) SUV for launch in China. The SUV was spied testing in the country on a number of occasions and looks very much like the alleged concept it is based on – The Yuntu.
If you are wondering about the name, the Jeep Commander has a modest 5-year production run between 2005-2010. It failed to make a huge impact especially because of dwindling demand for large SUVs and surging gasoline prices. However, it was bigger than the Cherokee and no other models has broken this barrier since.
The Jeep Grand Commander looks like any other Jeep at the front. There’s a large 7-slot grille, prominent bumper and sleek headlights. Its sides are long and the subtle sweep that the Yuntu concept had, has been retained. Overall the car looks good but there are reasons to believe that this is a China-only model, or atleast not coming to the States.
Firstly, The Jeep Grand Commander is based on FCA’s Compact U.S. Wide (CUSW) platform, which has a unibody construction. Almost all the reports of a 7-seater Jeep SUV in the USA has mentioned a body-on-frame chassis. This would also effectively separate the Commander from the Cherokee, and brings it more in line with the proper ‘Jeep’ spirit. Also, the low approach and departure angles makes it an unlikely candidate for USA.
Interior of the SUV isn’t spied yet but it could look similar to other top-end SUVs in their line-up
The SUV should come powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that produces 270 hp and 400 Nm of torque. This is the same mill that is in the new Wrangler. That’s not all, the transmission is likely to be sourced from the Wrangler as well.
The Yuntu concept came as plug-in hybrid but the production model is unlikely to have the same. However, the possibility of a future variant cannot ruled out.
Jeep Grand Commander price, release date & availability
As we said, the Jeep Grand Commander is unlikely to come to USA. Instead, body-on-frame SUVs like Wagoneer and super-sized Grand Wagoneer are what is being pegged now.
Apart from China, Jeep’s newer markets such as India could receive this model. The Jeep Compass which was launched in sub-continent recently has managed to make good headway in the segment.