It’ll slot between the regular Grand Cherokee and the Wagoneer.

Jeep rode the rising popularity of SUVs to great success, roughly doubling its sales over the last decade. It did so without a three-row SUV in its lineup, but that’s about to change. Jeep is planning to introduce three new three-row SUVs in the coming months, and our spy photographers have captured one of them – a three-row version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee. It’ll slot between the regular Grand Cherokee and the upcoming Wagoneer. It’s expected to arrive sometime next year.

The new three-row Grand Cherokee, which may go by a unique name when it arrives, will ride on Alfa Romeo’s Giorgio platform. Powertrains will likely include an updated version of the automaker’s Pentastar V6, a new 3.0-liter inline-six, and a mild-hybrid system that’ll replace the 5.7-liter Hemi V8. A plug-in hybrid and turbodiesel engine are also expected at some point.

The addition of a third row will likely extend the SUV’s rear overhang, which could hinder some of the SUV’s off-road capabilities. However, our spy photographers say that at least one trim would receive the coveted “Trail Rated” badge and that the model would be similar in size to the current Dodge Durango.

Gallery: Jeep Grand Cherokee Three-Row Spy Photos

Three three-row SUVs sounds like a lot, but each would have a different class of competitors. While the Wagoneer would go head-to-head with the Ford Expedition and GMC Yukon, the three-row version of the Grand Cherokee would compete against SUVs like the Toyota Highlander and Ford Explorer. The larger, more luxurious Grand Wagoneer would find the Land Rover Range Rover and Lincoln Navigator as its competitors.

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We don’t know what to expect inside. Jeep is giving the regular Grand Cherokee a makeover, which means we’ll likely see a new interior packed with the latest Uconnect infotainment system and safety technologies. Our spy photographers have captured the next-gen Grand Cherokee out and about. Jeep is expected to reveal it sometime this year, which should give us a good idea of what to expect from the three-row variant unless Jeep introduces both at the same time.

Source: Automedia