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Grand Commander: preview of a Chrysler crossover

by David Zatz on

The Jeep Grand Commander was just revealed in China.

Back in April, Allpar’s Mike Volkmann showed images of the new “China Jeep,” a seven-passenger crossover that started out as an extended-length Cherokee but seems to have moved on from there.

Aussie publication CarAdvice wrote that the car previously known as the K8 and Yuntu would be sold as the “Grand Commander,” a prediction that has now come true.

Allpar insiders still expect a version of the Grand Commander to be made in the United States — but not as a Jeep, since it would not reach Jeep’s tough off-road requirements, and would sit awkwardly alongside the Grand Cherokee.

Jeep Grand Commander profile

The American version would be a Chrysler, most likely to be built alongside the Cherokee in Belvidere, Illinois. There has been some talk about it being made in Toluca, replacing the current Journey; depending on projected Cherokee sales, that could happen. The company certainly has options, including moving large cars to Toluca in calendar-year 2020 and building something else at Brampton. That would allow the Brampton plant to get a needed renovation, though FCA could just stop building cars there for three to six months.

The primary USA powertrain is likely to be either the turbo-2.0 just shown in the Cherokee, or the eTorque 2.0 from the Jeep Wrangler JL, if FCA can ramp up engine production quickly enough. Given the antecedents of the vehicles, a V6 might be possible, but there are no guarantees. Engineering without space for a V6 would reduce cost and weight a little; but that hood looks as though it’s ready for a bigger engine.


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