After more than ten years, the current one is finally going to die.
The Jeep brand has built up an iron-clad reputation for off-road prowess and being a true adventure-mobile, with even the Compass and Renegade offering genuine off-road ability in certain trims. But the American SUV company is also capable of creating some pretty luxurious models, such as the midsize Jeep Grand Cherokee, which has been a staple of the brand for some time. The current generation has performed well, selling more than 200,000 units a year since 2016, with the recent addition of the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk broadening its appeal even further. But the fourth-generation WK2 has been in production since 2010, and a decade on it's in need of a major overhaul. Thankfully, an all-new model is in the cards for 2021, and this is everything we know so far.
The platform underpinning the current model dates back to the days of Daimler Chrysler, as do most of FCA's current platforms, with the exception of the Giorgio platform that underpins the Alfa Romeo Giulia and Stelvio. It's believed that the new Grand Cherokee will ride on an extended version of this platform, extended to keep the GC firmly within the midsize segment. The wheelbase is expected to be stretched beyond that of the current 114.9-inch measurement of the current GC.
In terms of engines, expect a mix of FCA equipment ranging from 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder options - likely also from Alfa Romeo - to the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 and 5.7-liter HEMI V8 with eTorque as seen in the Ram 1500. There's even a hybrid version expected with plug-in capabilities, while the option of a supercharged V8 can never be ruled out - especially since the Trackhawk has been such an important halo for the current model lineup. Expect the same choices between 2WD and 4WD, with air suspension, dual-range transfer cases, and enough hardware to ensure the new SUV earns its 'Trail Rated' badge, at least in Trailhawk guise.
With an increase in size, we expect the Grand Cherokee to grow in a number of ways compared to the current one. The lengthened wheelbase will give buyers more passenger room, and while the model will initially be released as a five-seater, we expect a three-row option to join the lineup later on to rival the Audi Q7 and Volvo XC90. This will still be smaller than the upcoming truck-based Jeep Grand Wagoneer expected in 2022.
It's also likely to take a step up in terms of tech and luxury, integrating the latest-generation Uconnect infotainment systems with a larger 10.1-inch display screen. This digital focus is likely to infiltrate the instrumentation as well with a new 10.5-inch digital gauge cluster, and the previously problematic shift lever is expected to be replaced by a rotary dial instead. Comfort features will be bolstered by the addition of massaging seats and a whole bunch of upgraded switchgear with a more premium feel.