The stretched wheelbase will make it roomier than the outgoing model.
It’s safe to say the Jeep Grand Cherokee is getting a bit long in the tooth considering the WK2 generation has been around for literally a decade. The midsize SUV will finally switch to its fifth iteration soon with the all-new development said to be vastly different than today’s aging model, according to a report published by Car and Driver. Get ready for a slew of changes as the new arrival will be overhauled inside and out.
As the late Sergio Marchionne first hinted a little over three years ago, the next Grand Cherokee is expected to ride on the same Giorgio platform as the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. It would make sense considering the automotive conglomerate certainly wants to spread out the development costs for the platform, having spent €1 billion ($1.1B) to engineer it. Only the aforementioned Stelvio and Giulia sedan are sitting on the architecture for the time being, but ex-FCA U.S. sales chief Reid Bigland said back in November 2016 the platform could be adapted to underpin additional models.
Gallery: Jeep Grand Cherokee Three-Row Spy Photos
The switch to new hardware is expected to bring a stretch of the wheelbase beyond the 114.7 inches (2.91 meters) offered by today’s SUV. That will obviously translate into a roomier cabin for the five-seat model and will allow the company to introduce a three-row version later in the life cycle. Being a Jeep first and foremost, it will have true off-road capabilities with a four-wheel-drive system and a rugged Trailhawk derivative. Speaking of additional versions, another spicy Trackhawk flavor is likely planned.
Car and Driver appear to be in the know as far as the engines are concerned, claiming an electrified 2.0-liter inline-four will power the entry-level model. Step up to a more expensive model and Jeep will reportedly sell you its new Grand Cherokee with the familiar Pentastar V6 with eTorque, while a plug-in hybrid powertrain is said to arrive later on. Interestingly, there’s also the possibility of seeing a diesel engine borrowed from the Ram 1500 where the 3.0-liter V6 makes a healthy 260 hp and 480 pound-feet (651 Newton-meters).
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Some U.S. customers would certainly enjoy the return of the diesel engine, especially since Jeep has been selling the current-generation Grand Cherokee oil burner in Europe without any interruptions since 2011. In the U.S., availability was impacted by the emissions scandal several years ago that also involved the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel, with EPA saying some vehicles were equipped with cheat devices. For the 2020MY, the Grand Cherokee lost its diesel engine.
When can we expect to see the revamped GC? FCA Head of Design Ralph Gilles said not long ago that it would debut later in 2020, but time will tell when that’ll actually happen taking into account the coronavirus might push back the world premiere. Beyond the new Grand Cherokee and its three-row sibling, Jeep’s SUV push will continue with the return of the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer as larger body-on-frame trucks.