Jeep is in a transformative period.
While the spotlight is on the adventure brand's upcoming off-road joust with the Ford Bronco, another larger development is taking place: Jeep is setting itself up to gain ground everywhere else.
By the end of 2021, Jeep will have a varied powertrain portfolio that plays in the electrified and diesel spaces, while its new three-row options and redesigned Grand Cherokee bring fresh competition to the crossover world.
On top of that, a V-8-powered Wrangler appears close, which could add an intriguing option to the off-road war with the Bronco.
A slowed economy could hamper Jeep's progress, just like the rest of industry, but a lack of offerings won't be on its list of problems.
The brand has been checking off boxes on its fan wish list with models such as the Gladiator pickup, a diesel Wrangler and a stronger V-8 Wrangler — which still bears the "concept" tag but has been spotted undergoing road tests.
The loyalists are getting their fill. But can Jeep attract new buyers to the brand with its slate of new options?
Taking the brand upstream with the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, which will start production in the second quarter of 2021 at the Warren Truck Assembly Plant in suburban Detroit, is one avenue to drawing Jeep newcomers.
"Having a new Grand Cherokee would be beneficial. But then with some of these other vehicles, Jeep is taking the fight to Land Rover, and perhaps all the way up to Range Rover," Tyson Jominy, J.D. Power's vice president of data and analytics, told Automotive News.
"The only way it's going to work is if it attracts new customers. It's a play for really capitalizing on the name Jeep and the image, so I think it will have to attract new customers, and it's ultimately just going to depend on the execution," he said.