The Jeep Wagoneer is back for the first time since 1991. Classic Jeep enthusiasts will remember its slanted rectangular exterior and famous wood paneling.
Jeep is bringing this classic model back with an all-new modern look. The company is vying to enter the luxury SUV market with their new Wagoneers and compete against high-end brands like Lincoln, Cadillac, and Mercedes.
So what is the 2021 Jeep Wagoneer going to be like? How will it compare to its 1980s namesake? More importantly, how will it compare to other SUVs on the market today?
What all can you expect from this new model? We outline the key specs, changes, and features in this complete 2021 Jeep Wagoneer review.
At its core, the 2021 Jeep Wagoneer is an SUV version of the Dodge Ram 1500 full-sized pickup. The Wagoneer is built with a body-on-frame construction and an independent rear suspension setup. Jeep hasn’t yet provided dimensions, but the Wagoneer is speculated to be similar in size to the Chevy Tahoes and Suburbans.
The Jeep Wagoneer’s exterior design is about what you’d expect from a full-sized SUV. There’s only so much you can do with a rolling box after all. But Jeep, to their credit, is doing what they can to make the Wagoneer look impressive and unique.
The front fascia features Jeep’s traditional seven-slot grille with the Wagoneer name on top. The whole thing is backlit with LEDs to make a very cool light signature that stands out in the dark.
Underneath the seven-slot opening is a secondary split grille. This is where the LED fog lights and tow hooks sit. The front of the vehicle is finished off with a black aluminum skid plate.
Many people agree that the front is this car’s best view. The side and rear, however, leave a bit to be desired. The heavy pillars and wrap-around taillights make it look like a minivan from the back.
Overall, the car is big and boxy, with proportions that some are calling awkwardly tall. The exterior features lots of chrome accents and massive 24-inch wheels to try and add a bit of cool factor back into the frame.
No Exterior Reference to Classic Wagoneers
To the disappointment of some classic Jeep fans, the company decided to go with a fully modern design that does little to reference the iconic Wagoneers of the 80s. Sorry, but there are no wood panels on this one.
But for people who like the sleeker design of modern cars, this is a huge plus. The intricate detailing found in the lighting elements and grille does a lot of work to make the exterior look fashionable and modern. Not to mention the huge chrome-plated wheels.
Jeep has confirmed that they will be offering hybrid Wagoneer models as well. All of the models will likely have a standard four-wheel drive for off-roading enthusiasts who rely on Jeeps to get them through rocky or muddy terrain.
The interior of the Jeep Wagoneer 2021 is what really has people buzzing. The cabin is a rich combination of wood and leather that makes the whole thing feel modern and elegant.
The amount of screens inside is almost absurd. In the front seat, there is a digital gauge cluster behind the steering wheel, upper and lower displays on the center console, and even a dashboard screen specifically for the front passenger.
In the back, there are entertainment screens mounted on the backs of the front seats, as well as a screen between the second-row seats for climate control. As impressive as all this is, it’s also important to note that some of these features may only be available in the pricier models.
Jeep says that the infotainment software in the 2021 Wagoneer will be Fiat-Chrysler’s new Uconnect 5 system. They are also set to offer McIntosh audio systems with 23 speakers throughout the vehicle.
The front seats are designed to be extremely comfortable. They come with separate center armrests for the driver and front passenger, as well as a massage function.
Three rows of seats will be standard and offer a seven-passenger configuration with captain’s chairs in the second row. Jeep is expected to offer a second-row bench seat as well to achieve an eight-passenger capacity.
What’s Under the Hood?
Because of Jeep’s comparisons to the Ram 1500, the Wagoneer is likely to share its powertrain offerings. The Ram has both 3.6-liter V-6 and 5.8-liter V-8 options. Both of these engines are likely going to be available in the 2021 Jeep Wagoneer models.
There is also the possibility of a turbo-diesel 3.0-liter V-6 engine offering. Jeep will probably have off-road packages available for outdoor enthusiasts as well.
Now let’s talk about the cost. The Wagoneers are designed to be higher-end SUVs and are going to be priced as such.
Debuting alongside the Wagoneer is the upscale Grand Wagoneer. This model is spearheading Jeep’s ambitions to compete with luxury brands like Lincoln, Mercedes, and Cadillac. And it’s got the price tag to match.
Fully loaded Grand Wagoneers will top around $100,000. Fortunately for people who aren’t looking to shell out top dollar for all the bells and whistles, pricing for the standard Wagoneer will start around $60,000.
These different models are Jeep’s attempt to cater to the wide range of customers who are looking to buy full-sized SUVs. Some people might want to pay $100,000 for all those extra screens. But that kind of price tag is way out of budget for many families, so Jeep is working to accommodate these customers as well.
When Is It Hitting the Market?
Jeep confirmed in 2017 that both the 2021 Wagoneer and the 2021 Grand Wagoneer are going to be built at FCA’s Warren Truck assembly plant in Michigan. Recently, they announced their intentions to invest further in this facility and confirmed that production of the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer will begin in early 2021.
You’ll likely see a Wagoneer on the lot of your local Jeep dealer in mid-2021. However, Jeep has not confirmed a release date yet, and may decide to delay the Wagoneer’s release by a few months because of COVID precautions.
A New Classic, or an Awkward Box?
Will the 2021 Jeep Wagoneer make big waves when it hits the SUV market? Or will it join the ranks of other cars that are trying and failing to compete with luxury brands? That will be up to the consumers to decide.
Want to stay up to date on the latest models set to hit the market in 2021? Check out our latest auto reviews.