Do you remember the scene in the 1988 classic film The Great Outdoors where John Candy tries to bond with his son at the bear dump? Candy is driving one of the most iconic vehicles of the decade – a Jeep Grand Wagoneer. A few years later, Jeep discontinued the popular vehicle, much to the surprise of Jeep lovers. Fortunately, that wasn’t the end of the line for the iconic wood-paneled icon as Jeep recently announced the return of the Wagoneer name as its own extension of the Jeep brand. This means that you’ll soon see the all-new 2022 Grand Wagoneer and its more affordable sibling, the 2022 Wagoneer, in a new and improved format.
With the 2022 Grand Wagoneer boasting a six-figure price tag for its top trim, Wagoneer is making the 2022 Wagoneer more affordable with a starting price of $57,995. The base model is a far cry from basic and is packed with features that make it comparable to the top trims of the Ford Expedition, Chevy Tahoe, and GMC Yukon. Unlike its competitors, however, the Wagoneer will have the backing of the Jeep brand, and that reputation carries a lot of weight in the industry, especially when you’re looking for a vehicle capable of both pavement and dirt-road driving. So, what type of capability can you expect from the 2022 Wagoneer? Here’s a sneak peek!
Engine: A Solid Performer with Next-Generation Technology
The 2022 Wagoneer can hold its own on any road with Jeep’s tried and true 5.7-liter V8 engine under the hood. The engine produces 392 horsepower and 404 lb-ft of torque that makes the Wagoneer incredibly fun to drive whether you’re speeding down a flat stretch of interstate or navigating a back road full of s-curves and hairpin turns. What truly sets the engine apart and adds to its efficiency and performance is its next-generation eTorque hybrid system. How does the system work?
The eTorque system replaces the standard engine-mounted alternator with a belt-driven motor generator unit that’s powered by a 48-volt battery pack. This new setup makes the start-stop feature on the Wagoneer truly seamless and adds around 130 lb-ft of immediate torque. This is huge in situations where you need to accelerate quickly without the added worry of having enough immediate power to move the SUV. For example, when you’re stopped and the engine shuts off, but you need to quickly accelerate to move the Wagoneer into traffic. The immediate torque and improved responsiveness make this an easy maneuver that you can confidently perform.
Four-Wheel-Drive Systems: Three Options to Optimize Performance
If you’re familiar with the Jeep brand, then you know that Jeep leads the industry in its four-wheel drive technology. That technology will join the Wagoneer lineup to make the Wagoneer and its grander sibling off-road and adventure-ready. This technology includes three four-wheel drive systems that are designed to deliver optimal performance to meet your driving style and needs.
The Quadra-Trac I is a full-time four-wheel drive system with a single-speed transfer case. This system takes the guesswork out of engaging four-wheel drive because it constantly delivers four-wheel drive technology to improve traction and optimize fuel economy in a variety of conditions. The Quadra-Trac II system is a two-speed transfer case that gives you more control over when to engage the four-wheel drive. The system constantly monitors the tires’ traction and immediately takes action to route torque to the wheel that needs it most. This can help you get out of dicey situations like muddy or slippery terrain where you need better traction or grip.
The Quadra-Drive II system is the ultimate for off-road capability and includes an electronic limited-slip differential to deliver the best traction in the industry. Like the Quadra-Trac II system, the Quadra-Drive system is constantly monitoring the tires and their grip on the road. However, the system is even more responsive because it also anticipates low traction and proactively routes torque as needed to minimize wheel slippage and optimize the Wagoneer’s performance. So, by the time you feel your tires slipping, the Quadra-Drive II system is already at work.
Drive Modes and Air Suspension: Confidently Explore the Road Ahead
With the Wagoneer equipped with outstanding four-wheel drive technology, the premium SUV takes its capability a step further with its air suspension system known as Quadra-Lift. Thanks to this suspension system, the Wagoneer offers a 25-degree approach angle, a 24-degree departure angle, and a 22-degree breakover angle. It’s also capable of fording water up to 22 inches and offers a decent ground clearance of 10 inches, which means it can tackle various rocks and obstacles in the road with ease.
Both automatic and manual to give you more control, the Quadra-Lift suspension system adds up to 3.6 inches of lift to the Wagoneer by adjusting air springs in the corners of the SUV. The system is automatically set to Normal Ride Height, which offers a standard 8-inch ground clearance and delivers enhanced fuel economy and a smooth ride. When the Wagoneer is traveling down the highway at a certain speed or is operating in Eco or Sport Mode, it is automatically set to Aero Mode. This lowers the vehicle 0.6 inches from its Normal Ride Height to optimize fuel economy and performance.
If you’re carrying a lot of gear in the rear cargo space and want to make loading and unloading easier, you can switch the system to Park Mode. This lowers the vehicle 1.6 inches from its Normal Ride Height to make the rear more easily accessible. When you’re venturing off the pavement and down the trail, you can optimize the Wagoneer’s performance using Off-Road 1 or Off-Road 2 Mode. Off-Road 1 lifts the vehicle an inch to give the Wagoneer a 9-inch ground clearance. Off-Road 2 raises the Wagoneer two inches to yield the Wagoneer’s highest ground clearance of 10 inches.
Jeep’s beloved Selec-Terrain system also makes an appearance on the 2022 Wagoneer and adds to its performance. The Selec-Terrain system delivers five unique modes that allow you to customize the Wagoneer for a variety of terrains. For example, Auto Mode can take you from paved to dirt roads without missing a beat, while Sport Mode makes the Wagoneer more fun to drive with tighter handling and improved responsiveness. When you’re traveling down snowy roads, Snow Mode adjusts the Wagoneer’s traction to give the tires a better grip on the road.
Rock Mode engages the Quadra-Lift air suspension system to raise the Wagoneer to its maximum height to deliver 10 inches of ground clearance. In addition to raising the SUV, this mode also customizes the performance of the throttle, differentials, and transfer case to give you more control over the SUV at lower speeds, which is great when crawling over rocks. The Sand/Mud Mode also engages the Quadra-Lift system in addition to improving traction by making the vehicle more sensitive to tire slippage and wheel spin. By delivering the right amount of torque to the tire that needs it most, the Wagoneer is capable of easing through sandy and muddy conditions like an off-road beast.
On-Road or Off-Road, No Problem!
The 2022 Wagoneer is proof that you can have it all! We already know that the premium SUV offers exceptional luxury and connectivity features, which often come at the cost of performance and capability. Fortunately, Wagoneer doesn’t require this sacrifice and delivers an SUV that can handle its own on the trail while offering you the utmost comfort and luxury. Who says you have to “rough it” when you venture off the beaten path? With the 2022 Wagoneer, you certainly won’t have to!