Lancer Insurance
Friday, May 24, 2024

2024 Wagoneer L FIRST IMPRESSION: Big, bold, and brawny, there’s no reason why this polished and comfortable large SUV won’t become an instant industry favorite.

The Wagoneer is among the newest full-size SUVs to find a home in our industry, and while the attractive vehicle looks great on paper, we were eager to find out if it lives up to the hype. After all, it’s been available at the CD/NLA Show for several years now with plenty of interest from attendees. Luckily, our team was finally able to score a test drive and put her through the paces. Here are our thoughts. Note: Although we tested the standard-length Wagoneer, the Wagoneer L is actually recommended as a livery offering with nearly identical features and options. The Wagoneer L is about a foot longer and provides more space for cargo.

2024 Wagoneer L True story: We didn’t have the Wagoneer even 24 hours before someone stopped us in the parking lot of our corporate headquarters and asked about the vehicle. After a quick walkaround inspection and a peek inside to see the second and third rows, the curious onlooker left us with this sentiment: “That’s one classy ride.” We’ve definitely received compliments and questions on other vehicles we’ve tested before, but it ended up being a good omen for our test drive.

The Wagoneer—and its longer wheelbase sibling, the L—may resemble some of the other vehicles in the lineup, but the Wagoneer is undeniably in a class all by itself. It’s not a Jeep Wagoneer, it’s a Wagoneer by Jeep. Sure, the website will mention its impressive towing capacity (with optional package), unbelievable off-road capabilities, and dazzle you with the nameplate’s long-standing history that began six decades ago, but this Wagoneer is a different animal that was developed with luxury and comfort in mind.

2024 Wagoneer L The model we received had optional captain’s chairs for the second row (absolutely our preference) and a folding third row bench seat that didn’t disappoint. Both rows had individual climate control or vents and USB ports to plug in phones—yes, even the last row. Third rows can be tricky, even for a full-size SUV, but sitting here for a while during a highway test drive felt neither cramped nor uncomfortable. Head- and legroom in that row was a solid 39 inches and 36.6 inches, respectively, and the reclining seats made it all the more customizable for the journey ahead.

Whether you choose the standard or long wheelbase, you’ll have no problems with hauling passengers’ bags. You’ll get 27.4 cu. ft. (standard) or 42.1 cu. ft. (L) behind the third row alone, but power-folding seats offer even greater capacity if needed. Expect a foot-tap trunk close as well. If we have any complaints about the rear gate, it’s the height—beware if you have an especially tall chauffeur or passenger.

2024 Wagoneer L Specs:
Wagoneer and Wagoneer L are available in 4x2 and 4x4

MPG: 17/24/20 (city/highway/combined 4x2), 16/23/19 (city/highway/combined 4x4)
HEADROOM (2nd/3rd Row): 40"/39"
LEGROOM (2nd/3rd Row): 42.7"/36.6"
CARGO (Behind 3rd Row): 13.5 cu. ft.
PRICE (fleet): Starting at around $70,000.
WARRANTY (Coming Soon): 5-year/150K-mile package covering 850+ items

For the chauffeur, you’ll get a power adjustable seat with a heads-up display, a 10.1-inch touchscreen, a dial shifter, extra ports for charging, and a cavernous console to stow all their gear. As for technology, its Uconnect 5 has navigation and is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Finally, the mix of stitched leather and wood trim looks sharp and rich.

As for exterior styling, Wagoneer kept it simple but refined: It’s not overly ostentatious but subtly classy. The chrome of the grille pops against the black (which we’re sure most of you will choose, although it’s quite pretty in the velvet red, too) and elevates its status from SUV to luxury SUV in our book. When you approach with the key, you’ll be welcomed by the illuminated “Wagoneer” by the driver’s side door—if you didn’t already catch the badging on the hood, side, and rear.

Gas mileage was ... well, it’s a full-size SUV, so we averaged about 17-20 MPGs (its EPA rating for the 4x2 is 17/24/20 for city/highway/combined). Wagoneer has made some refinements to keep the fuel efficiency as high as possible, including ditching its former V-8 and going with a standard inline 6 twin turbo that delivers 420 horsepower—the best power among its class. Even with a full load of passengers, we had zero problems with pickup or responsive acceleration. For a big girl, nearly 18 feet long (or nearly 19 for the L), she sure can punch it. Plus, regular unleaded is suggested, so you won’t have to break the bank to gas up with premium.

Bottom line: Wagoneer has found its place in full-size luxury without commanding a premium luxury price. It’s well-appointed, handsome interior and exterior looks, comfortable ride, outstanding cargo space, and seating for up to six passengers will fill that sweet spot between sedan and van.   [CD0324]