FCA Dealers Worried Jeep Grand Wagoneer Will Miss The SUV Party

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles dealers fear that the company may be too late in launching the long-awaited Jeep Grand Wagoneer.

FCA chief executive Sergio Marchionne first made reference to the three-row luxury SUV more than seven years ago, but the vehicle has yet to materialize. Despite recently being confirmed to launch early next decade, that could indeed prove to be a little too late.

Speaking to Automotive News, an FCA dealer said that higher interest rates and gas prices will make the Grand Wagoneer harder to sell than a few years ago.

“I think our window of opportunity is closing. We could have killed with [the Grand Wagoneer] if it had been available when they first told us about it, but it’s a much tougher sell with interest rates and gas prices going up.”

Just a couple of years ago, Marchionne said the Grand Wagoneer would compete with range-topping Range Rover models and be priced upwards of $140,000.

The automaker has since changed tune and wants the vehicle to instead compete with three-row SUVs from Ford and General Motors, including the Lincoln Navigator and GMC Yukon Denali.

According to Bank of America Merrill Lynch research analyst John Murphy, U.S. vehicles sales may slow significantly over the next five years. He says that factors including higher fuel prices, lower used-car values, higher interest rates and jacked-up raw material costs will make it harder for dealers to sell expensive vehicles.

Despite this, not everyone is too concerned about the delay: “The Grand Wagoneer will still sell because it’s a Jeep”, another FCA dealer told Automotive News. He conceded, though, that “it would have been nice to have them already”.

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  • Alfa Giulia QV

    So some are worried by the time this thing arrives the SUV craze will be dying off? That’s understandable [Please let it happen] as higher gas prices and other factors may contribute to people buying less of them. I do agree, though, this thing should have came out already. All this time and nothing. Sergio should hurry up and go. People are tired of all his broken promises and empty claims.

  • Well, the solution is obvious! Launch the Wagoneer as a wagon.

    • :/ Yurr

      ? Lol…

    • Bo Hanan

      WHY NOT JUST “LAUNCH” SERGIO NOW.

  • CJKnox

    It’s never too late, those that can afford to buy this at 140K don’t care about the price of gas! Also, if they make a decent hybrid or electric power train they could work around high gas prices regardless.

    • That’s before they reposition it again, no longer as Range Rover competitor but Navigator and Escalade competitor.

      • CJKnox

        Well the Navigator is a Range Rover competitor so yeah………….

        • But are they in the same league? In the short answer, not quite. Even by the price point top of the line Navigator can only bought you the cheapest RR, if you look at luxury SUV in US, only G-Class and Range Rover that are more expensive than Navigator to Escalade. We haven’t even compare features of each cars.

          • CJKnox

            The difference in base price between the Navigator and RR is about 10K. Obviously the RR is superior in terms of off road capability but most just stay on the road any way. In terms of luxury and materials the two are evenly matched. The SV Autobiography trims are a different league though.

          • This is definitely personal opinion, but I compare Escalade (I haven’t try Navigator yet) to Range Rover is like comparing Accord and Mercedes, it’s just a step above it, beside Range Rover road quality has improved so much that media like Autocar put the Range Rover in the same class as S-Class. But again American market is different than European.

  • Craig

    FCA dealers are right to worry. That said… I won’t be shedding too many tears [if any at all] when Marchionne finally retires.

  • TheBelltower

    WTF are they waiting for?

  • Fiat is incompetent…

  • GT

    Maybe they should make it bigger with a bigger engine?

    • Bash

      Bigger than the 707hp engine?

      • Liam Paul

        about a 909 hp version of the hellcat and Call it the Fallen Angel

        • Bash

          I think i just got wet on that idea… but there is one problem… serg!

  • MarketAndChurch

    I can’t believe FCA is this broke… so broke that they can’t even launch cash cows such as the wagoneer to climb them out of the hole they’re in.

  • Yeah make it into Navigator/Escalade rival, and make the car hard to sell for most of the world. I really suspect that they don’t dare to challenge the Range Rover because they are afraid they can compete with it.

  • Classic Bob

    Sergio’s missed the boat on so many product launches, while allowing current models to wither or die on the vine. Chrysler, Dodge and Lancia have suffered the most from the neglect. And when FCA does get new product to market, it’s almost never without issues or delays, from the Dart and Cherokee to the newest Alfa Romeo models. It’s almost always too little, too late, never meeting timeline or volume projections…

    But starving brands of investment has at least got shareholders cheering, the only ones left giving him any vote of confidence.

  • Bash

    Im worried about the future of my SRT and the whole Dodge/Chrysler brand.

    • Liam Paul

      My 8 ball just told me their Future is ” Not Looking Good Today “

      • Bash

        you don’t need an 8 ball to figure out that…. sad truth..

    • Auf Wiedersehen

      I don’t have a Magic 8 Ball but my intuition tells me FCA is about to open “A big ol’ can of Not Good” just as Serg kicks open the tail door and jumps out at 40k feet wearing his golden parachute, DB Cooper style.

  • Stephen G

    Remember the XK Commander? Why would Jeep continue to entertain this idea?

    • Infinite1

      Because FCA has the “better late than never” attitude and then wonder why certain cars tend to fail

  • Liam Paul

    Maybe Sergio Marchionne is trying to sale a bridge.. I mean 7 years ago, maybe I am wrong but I don’t recall any test mules or anything being reported past words from FCA.. Talk is cheap

  • TheToadPrince..~~ToadSquad

    just retire serg…u cant even give us a proper delievery date on ur alfa cars nor even keep any of ur promises…just go for god sakes.

  • Paul

    This should have been on the market already. Sergio needs to retire.

  • FunctionForm

    As long as it’s good looking it will be a hit. I for one will want one. But the styling has to be a home run. Knocked out of the park.

  • Auf Wiedersehen

    Do they NOT read the news? FORD has announced it!!! Good NEWS!! The SUV Party has JUST begun! GM hasn’t announced it but then again, GM has no freakin’ idea what people want and generally 5-10 years too late anyway. They’re too busy covering up mistakes of faulty parts.

  • Gerald Michael

    If (and that’s a big if) there is a Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, don’t be surprised if it’s not the body-on-frame SUV Sergio and Michael Manley have alluded to time and again, but a version of the Fiat FWD car-based Grand Commander currently on sale in China.

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