The Jeep Grand Cherokee is by far the oldest model in the Jeep lineup. The current generation dates back to 2011, which means it’s now entering its tenth year on the market.
And yet, Grand Cherokee sales remain strong in Canada. So far in 2019, Jeep’s midsize SUV leads most competitors including the Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento and Nissan Murano. Only the freshly redesigned Ford Edge sells more units.
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As you know, people are crazy about SUVs these days, but they still want to enjoy the latest tech and gadgets. That’s why FCA is finally preparing to introduce a new generation of Jeep Grand Cherokee—the fifth since the model’s inception in the early 1990s.
Spy shots of camouflaged prototypes being tested on the road have begun to surface and, according to Car and Driver, the production model will likely go on sale in mid-2020 as a 2021 model.
The Grand Cherokee will grow in size, naturally. With a longer wheelbase and rear overhang, it will offer more room for passengers and cargo. That being said, it should retain a two-row configuration as Jeep plans to release three-row SUVs in the near future (using the Wagoneer name instead of the old Commander).
As revealed by former FCA boss Sergio Marchione in June 2018, the two models will be built alongside each other and share an extended version of the Giorgio platform that currently underpins the Alfa Romeo Giulia and Stelvio.
In terms of styling, the exterior of the Grand Cherokee will be more of an evolution than a revolution, with slimmer headlights and a fresh take on the company’s seven-slot grille. Some have predicted that the biggest changes will be found inside, like maybe a 12-inch touchscreen derived from the Ram 1500 pickup.
One thing’s for sure: the venerable Jeep should continue to stand out from its direct rivals with a higher level of luxury, towing and off-road capability. Under the hood, the 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 and 5.7-litre HEMI V8 are most certainly coming back, the former possibly backed by the new eTorque mild hybrid system.
There’s also a good chance we’ll see the Wrangler’s turbocharged four-cylinder engine with eTorque, while rumours point towards FCA working on a new turbocharged inline-six engine that could make its way to the Grand Cherokee lineup at some point. Don’t get your hopes up for the 3.0-litre EcoDiesel V6, though.
So, when will the 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee make its global debut? While FCA is known for pushing back new-model launches, don’t be surprised if it comes to the Los Angeles Auto Show in late November. Over the past three years, we’ve witnessed the premiere of the Compass (2016), Wrangler (2017) and Gladiator (2018) at the California event.
As for pricing, there should be a slight increase from the current base MSRP of $45,645.