2022 Jeep Wagoneer vs. 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer: Compare SUVs

December 13, 2021

With its new full-size 2022 Wagoneer and 2022 Grand Wagoneer SUVs, Jeep has effectively drawn a line between the premium and luxury classes. 

The closest thing Jeep had to a premium vehicle was the Jeep Grand Cherokee, which just expanded with a third row in the 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L. That makes three three-row SUVs launched within a year from a brand that had none for decades, despite defining the SUV segment. 

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

The differences between the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer follow a similar logic as the Ford Expedition to Lincoln Navigator, and Chevrolet Tahoe to Cadillac Escalade. Ford’s top Platinum and Chevy’s top High Country trims encroach on the territory of their luxury siblings. Sold in Series I, Series II, and Series III trims, Jeep’s full-size SUVs are less distinguishable. The rear-wheel-drive Series I won’t be offered until next year. I tested a 2022 Wagoneer Series II, starting at $71,845 but bedazzled with $11,000 in options. That narrowed the gap with the $91,735 2022 Grand Wagoneer Series I tested the following week. 

Excluding the options, what follows here is the $20,000 question. The Grand difference between the two Wagoneers comes down to how much you want versus how much you need. 

The siblings share some bones with the Ram 1500 pickup truck, like other full sizers. From the outside, the big, blocky Wagoneer slots in between the Chevy Tahoe and Suburban. The only small thing about it is the seven-slot grille stamping it as a Jeep product, with the Grand Wagoneer fronting a chrome-studded pattern. The Grand Wagoneer adds chrome trim along the expansive greenhouse, a black painted roof that has no slimming effect, bigger fender flares, slightly thinner LED headlights, and power retractable running boards. Both the Wagoneer Series II and Grand Wagoneer Series I roll on 20-inch alloy wheels standard. 

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Series I 4x4

Inside and outside

The massive, squared off rear with large, square windows opens up the inside to 179.2 cubic feet of passenger space, which feels like the roomiest in the segment.

Both vehicles comfortably fit two large adults in the third row, with the Wagoneer seating eight and the Grand Wagoneer swapping out the second-row bench for captain’s chairs to seat seven. Either way, second-row riders get 42.7 inches of leg room, and the 36.6 inches of leg room in the third-row is roomier than the rear seats in many crossover SUVs. Ample head and hip room complement outboard armrests, cupholders, vents, USB ports, and in the Grand Wagoneer, power recline controls. More than 27 cubic feet of cargo can fit behind the third row as well. Both models get power-fold headrests in the third row. The Wagoneer requires manual folding of the third-row seat. That 60/40-split third row is the roomiest and best executed in the full-size segment, and justifies the awkward rear end. An extended wheelbase model is coming, promising even more space. Power second-row seats make getting in and out of the Grand Wagoneer easier than navigating most holiday dinner tables. 

Up front, the driver and passenger are swaddled in luxury. Both models get nappa leather seats that are heated and cooled, but the Wagoneer’s 12-way power front seats with lumbar adjustment get upgraded to 24-way power with standard massagers in the Grand Wagoneer.

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

Capability 

That may tip the scales toward the Grand Wagoneer Series I more than its other selling point: a blistering 6.4-liter V-8 shared with the Dodge Charger and Challenger SRT models. The Wagoneer has a 5.7-liter V-8 that makes 391 hp and 404 lb-ft of torque, aided by a 48-volt mild hybrid system that helps on takeoff and also handles much of the electrical load. It’s plenty powerful, but the 471-hp and 455 lb-ft coming from the Grand Wagoneer’s V-8 is next level. It launches the 6,340-lb SUV to 60 mph in 6.0 seconds; in a vehicle this large, it’s nothing short of a modern marvel. The only thing more breathtaking is the plummeting fuel economy gauge; it gets an EPA-rated 15 mpg combined, compared to the Wagoneer’s 17 mpg. Good thing they both have a 26.5-gallon fuel tank. 

The Grand Wagoneer gets an air suspension and adaptive dampers to better control that prodigious weight, but there’s no dodging physics here: it leans into turns and corners like a bakery. At least the cabin absorbs little from the road, keeping it an oasis of calm. Five drive modes automatically raise or lower the suspension from its standard 8.0 inches of ground clearance. It lowers 1.6 inches for easier entry and exit, which is also helped by standard power running boards, or it raises 2.0 inches to 10 inches for bona fide off-roading in the Jeep tradition. Also standard on the Grand Wagoneer (and available on the Wagoneer) is a 2-speed transfer case to aid sticky situations off-road or for more grunt when hauling a heavy load. 

Four-wheel drive comes standard on either model, for now, and towing capacity maxes out at 9,850 lb in the Grand Wagoneer and 10,000 lb in the Wagoneer. The latter rides on steel springs but has load-leveling rear dampers to even the ends. 

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

Features

The standard features are the other big difference, though many of the Grand Wagoneer’s standard gear is available on the Wagoneer Series II. The Wagoneer gets a 10.1-inch touchscreen, while the Grand Wagoneer has a 12.0-inch touchscreen. Similarly, the GW’s digital instrument cluster is that much larger. In both pre-production vehicles, wireless Apple CarPlay dropped without pattern, and the phone didn't stay paired with Bluetooth. Jeep reps told me a pending software update should correct the glitches. 

A climate control panel hides the standard wireless smartphone charger, making it very easy to forget your phone behind. The GW’s standard second-row captain’s chairs (available on the Wagoneer Series II) have another 10.1-inch climate screen that juts up from the console and can’t be retracted or stowed, thereby limiting some of the usable space in row two. 

Other notable standard features of the Grand Wagoneer include an outside-world canceling 19-speaker McIntosh audio system; automatic power folding side mirrors; four-zone climate control; real wood trim; and a crystal-clear head-up display. 

Both of Jeep’s full-size SUVs come well equipped. If hauling passengers and gear around in the roomiest cabin around is the primary concern, the Wagoneer Series II fits the bill. But so many of the extra standard features on the Grand Wagoneer tempt the next level of comfort, convenience, and capability. If the road ahead calls for adventure as much as utility, the Grand Wagoneer earns the extra $20,000. 

Either way, the siblings conspire for a TCC Rating of 7.2 out of 10; once crash-test results are finalized, it’ll likely match the Lincoln Navigator as our highest rated full-size SUV. If tested separately, the Grand Wagoneer would get a higher rating.

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