The jeep Grand Wagoneer was the pioneer in the sports SUV market and were manufactured between 1963 and 1991 by several automakers. It is another iconic Chrysler brand and a luxury 4×4 which was an SUV roadmaster in its heydays. Chrysler will be reviving the Grand Wagoneer in 2015 which will be powered by a Pentastar V6 engine coupled to an 8-speed automatic transmission gear box.
The Grand Wagoneer has had a very eventful run. Its predecessor the Willys Jeep Station Wagon faced a lot of competition from the main car manufacturers forcing Willys-Overland motors to come up with the Grand Wagoneer which was designed by Brooks Stevens. The early Wagoneers used the Tornado, a 3.8 litre SOHC six cylinder engine which was also manufactured by the Wyllis-Overland company. The engine was however disbanded for a lower compression version in 1964 due to cooling issues.
In the maiden years, the Wagoneer did not undergo major changes except for the fact that optional seat belts were introduced. The tornado engine was in the following two years replaced by the American Motors 3.8 litre OHV inline six. In 1966 the Super Wagoneer was introduced. It came with the 201 horsepower AMC V8 engine. It could thus be termed a luxurious jeep of the time due to its unique internal features which included: a push radio button, air conditioning, power brakes and power tailgates. All these features make it a predecessor to modern day luxury SUVs.
The years between 1967 and 1971 saw the discontinuation of both two wheel drive Wagoneers and also two door Wagoneers which were selling at a poor rate. During this period the Wagoneers also use Buick’s 5.7 litre 230 Horsepower Dauntless V8 engine. However after 1971 all Wagoneers were powered by AMC engines.
The brand further was further refined by the AMC which took over the Kaiser Jeep Corporation, the erstwhile manufacturer of the Jeep cars. The car was developed into a popular luxury brand by Chrysler. The Grand Wagoneer was last manufactured in 1991 under Chrysler thus ending the 28 years legend which was the third longest in the US automotive history.