Home / Car News / The Straight Six Engine Is Back With 510 HP In The Huge New Jeep Grand Wagoneer L

The Straight Six Engine Is Back With 510 HP In The Huge New Jeep Grand Wagoneer L

Morning Dump Grand Wagoneer L

The Jeep Wagoneer gets a longer body and a longer engine, BMW facelifts the X7, and Subaru’s cladding addition continues. All this on a special New York Auto Show edition of The Morning Dump.

Welcome to The Morning Dump, bite-sized stories corralled into a single article for your morning perusal. If you’re morning coffee’s working a little too well, pull up a throne and have a gander at the best of the rest of yesterday.

The Longest Jeep Gets The Longest Motor

Photo credit: Stellantis

The Jeep Wagoneer may already look like someone threw dubs on the Empire State Building, but customers are craving something even bigger. Who can blame them? An extended-length full-size body-on-frame SUV might be the best way to group road-trip across America, swallowing cargo and munching miles in serene comfort. Even seeing highway fuel economy in the low 20s, filling up all three rows still uses less fuel per person than taking two gas-only mid-sized sedans. To give the people what they want, Stellantis has stretched out its monolith to create the Wagoneer L and Grand Wagoneer L.

At 12 inches (305 millimeters) longer than a standard Wagoneer and riding on a wheelbase seven inches (178 millimeters) longer, the Wagoneer L is actually a touch shorter in length and wheelbase than a Cadillac Escalade ESV. Still, that should mean healthy gains in passenger room, right? Sike! Instead of focusing on passenger comfort, Jeep has put those length gains to work in the cargo area by offering a massive 44.2 cubic feet (1,251 liters) of room with all three rows of seats up. That’s 2.7 cubic feet (76 liters) more than an Escalade ESV offers and 8.2 cubic feet (232 liters) more room than a Lincoln Navigator L can offer.

Does this thing have a Hemi? Absolutely not. Say hello to the Hurricane inline-six. While news of this three-liter twin-turbo inline-six broke a few weeks ago, we didn’t have firm power and economy figures until now. The standard-output version of the Hurricane inline-six will be found making 420 horsepower and 468 lb.-ft. of torque in the Wagoneer L, while the Grand Wagoneer L gets a high-output version that cranks out 510 horsepower and 500 lb.-ft. of torque. Stout numbers, especially when compared to Stellantis’ line of pushrod V8s. For comparison, the 5.7-liter V8 in the standard Wagoneer churns out 392 horsepower and 404 lb.-ft. of torque, while the 6.4-liter V8 in the Grand Wagoneer makes 471 horsepower and 455 lb.-ft. of torque. The Hurricane inline-six’s impressive gains can be put to good use thanks to class-leading towing capacity of up to 9,850 pounds (4,468 kg).

Both the Wagoneer L and Grand Wagoneer L are rated 1 MPG higher combined than their V8-powered standard-length counterparts, although that doesn’t tell the whole story. To start, bigger means heavier, so the Wagoneer L and Grand Wagoneer L clock in at between 100 and 300 pounds heavier than the standard-length models. Not great, but not the end of the world either in a vehicle that already weighs in excess of 5,900 pounds in standard-length trim. Next, there’s the matter of turbocharging. Assuming typical sea level barometric pressure of 14.7 pounds per square inch, a standard-output Hurricane inline-six at peak boost of 22 PSI is pumping air into the cylinders that’s 149.65 percent denser than the air in a naturally-aspirated engine. Oxygen intake should be roughly equivalent to that of a 4.5-liter naturally-aspirated engine when on-boost. Add in the necessary fuel enrichment under boost and it’s no surprise that fuel economy figures don’t see huge improvement. Still, more power with no real fuel economy penalty isn’t a bad thing. Pricing hasn’t been announced for the Wagoneer L and Grand Wagoneer L, but expect news on that front closer to when Jeep’s longest SUVs go on sale later this year.

Sim Simma

Image: BMW

BMW seems to love a bit of controversy. Its big-boy X7 luxury SUV was the first model to turn the kidney grilles into lungs, and now the Bavarian brick has received a facelift to be the first production model to get BMW’s new split-headlamp treatment. This treatment starts with slim daytime running lights high atop the front fascia, with dark-finish headlamps in separate housings lower on the fascia. The enormous front grille remains a hallmark of the X7 and can now be illuminated if you want to look like a complete knob. While standard models now feature silver lower fascia elements that look a bit like energy swords from the Halo series of video games, M Sport and M Performance models get a blacked-out trim treatment with additional black trim bits for the front bumper’s air curtains. As is tradition for BMW facelifts, the taillights have been redesigned, the rear bumper’s lower trim has been slightly re-worked and new alloy wheel designs feature across the range.

The outgoing X7 had a choice of inline-six or V8 power, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that the 2023 model gets similar engine choices. X7 xDrive 40i models feature an updated B58 inline-six with Miller cycle capability. This smooth six cranks out 375 horsepower and 383 lb.-ft. of torque, notable jumps from the outgoing model’s 335 horsepower and 332 lb.-ft. of torque. V8-powered M60i models feature a new 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 called the S63, making 523 horsepower and 553 lb.-ft. of torque. Curiously enough, those are exactly the same power figures as the old N63 V8-powered M50i model. Should you want more power, an updated Alpina XB7 model is right around the corner with 621 horsepower, 590 lb.-ft. of torque and a stonking 180 mph top speed. All engines feature 48-volt mild hybrid systems and put their power to all four wheels through a ZF 8HP eight-speed automatic gearbox.

Of course the big news on the inside is the implementation of iDrive 8, a brighter, crisper, slicker, simplified user interface. While infotainment can still be used through BMW’s trademark iDrive knob, it’s quite easy to navigate through the 14.9-inch infotainment system using the touchscreen. The 12.3-inch digital cluster is also an improvement over the outgoing model’s sheer data overload, although there’s something conspicuously absent from the new X7’s cockpit. Dude, where’s my climate control panel? It might just be my Canadian cold-weather sensibilities speaking, but heated seats that can only be controlled through the touchscreen aren’t a great idea. There’s also no gear knob on offer, but that’s perfectly fine. The new gear selector switch looks plenty intuitive and saves a bit of space. Leather upholstery is available, but don’t be quick to brush off the standard Sensafin leatherette upholstery. Judging by how BMW’s old Sensatec leatherette holds up, Sensafin might be the smart move for long-term durability.

Described by BMW as a “central pillar in the ongoing product offensive at the most exclusive reaches of the premium car-maker’s model line-up,” some people might find the updated X7 offensive. Honestly, I like it more than I should. The updated X7 isn’t nearly as crass as the current M4 and the wedgy front end feels surprisingly cohesive. Pricing starts at $78,845 for the xDrive 40i model and $104,095 for the M60i model, with an expected on-sale date this fall. As for the Alpina XB7, it’s coming early in 2023. While pricing for this top-dog model hasn’t been announced, we can be sure that it’ll be expensive.

Lights, Cladding, Action

2023 Subaru Outback front three-quarter view
Photo credit: Subaru

Speaking of giving the people what they want, Subaru has refreshed the Outback wagon for 2023 to feature a tougher appearance, updated safety systems, and a trick bit of outdoorsy tech. Let’s start with the visuals. The current-generation Subaru Outback had a bit of a problem it debuted – people couldn’t tell it apart from the old model. The current car’s greenhouse was a bit swoopier and the plastic cladding was a touch more intense, but to the casual observer, a 2022 Outback looks exactly like a 2015 Outback from across a parking lot. That shouldn’t be a problem now. Angrier headlights align the 2023 Outback with the rest of the Subaru family, while unpainted corner cladding on the front bumper should guard against bollards and boulders alike. Long-time Outback fans will be stoked on the new round fog lights, a bit of a throwback to the golden years of limited-slip differentials and available manual gearboxes. The wheel arch cladding also gets more angular, taking inspiration from Marcello Gandini’s radical Lamborghinis. Unfortunately, not every Outback gets the new cosmetic treatment. The Outback Wilderness is heading into 2023 visually-unchanged.

Like boxer engines, all-wheel-drive, an outdoorsy image and slightly ugly styling, safety is a Subaru hallmark. As such, Subaru claim they’ve made improvements to their EyeSight driver assist suite. It’s still a camera-based system, but all models get a wider field of view and updated software. The top-spec Touring trim also gets an extra wide-angle camera to better detect pedestrians and cyclists. Locking what might be the greatest safety advancement to the top trim seems a little scummy to me, but what do I know? Also locked to higher trims is a new automatic emergency steering function that’s supposed to help avoid crashes below 50 mph (80 km/h). Hey, at least all 2023 Outback models get an electric brake booster that touts improved EyeSight performance and is sure to affect pedal feel. We’ll reserve judgment for when we drive it, some of the latest brake-by-wire systems on the market are actually pretty good. For those who want to get out into nature, what3words geocode functionality has been added to the Outback’s up-level infotainment system so owners can share their favorite scenic vistas. While this definitely sounds like a boon, wouldn’t it be unfortunate if the words chosen for your favorite vista ended up creating a rude phrase?

On a more consumer-focused front, a revised 11.6-inch touchscreen infotainment system on all but the base model features wireless Apple CarPlay, full-screen Android Auto and revised on-screen controls. The Onyx trim is now available with either the 2.4-liter turbocharged flat-four or the base 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated flat-four. Pricing is expected to be announced closer to the 2023 Subaru Outback’s on-sale date this fall, right on time for pumpkin spice latte season. Honestly, Subaru fans will probably quite like the new Outback. When you’re leading the sales race in your segment, you don’t mess too much with a successful thing.

The Flush

Whelp, time to drop the lid on this edition of The Morning Dump. The New York International Auto Show has officially kicked off, so expect more news to come throughout the day. In the meantime, all these big, expensive new SUVs beg a question: What’s going to happen to cars people can actually afford? Even subcompact crossovers are often cynical attempts to make people pay out the nose for a small hatchback with plastic cladding. While a fair selection of automakers still offer reasonably-priced cars, the subcompact segment is almost dead in America and the compact segment is moving upmarket faster than trust fund kids gentrified Williamsburg. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the entry-level side of the new car market.

Lead photo credit: Stellantis

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64 Responses

  1. Memo to BMW: making the paint look like silk is fantastic, but does not make the vehicle less ugly. Flame-surfacing’s ashes are cold and washed away, and sewer grates are only cool for the Ninja Turtles. What the hell is wrong with you?

    Signed,
    A simple car enthusiast.

        1. The Grand Cherokee is the biggest of the non-body on frame jeeps, the L model gives it a third row. The wagoneer twins are both body on frame and bigger, they come with three rows standard. The wagoneer is cheaper than the grand wagoneer. Think expedition to navigator. The L models for both give them longer wheelbases.

    1. And that’s only going to get worse as long as supply chain issues persist. If you only have the materials to manufacture 10 vehicles and you know no matter what you build will sell, are you going to make 10 SUVs that you make $10k each on or 10 midsize cars that you make $3k on?

    2. I really dont get the whole “lets make a model its own marque” ideology. Ram made sense. Wagoneer as a brand? Ehhhh…… so is it a Jeep Grand Wagoneer L or Wagoneer Grand Wagoneer L, or is it just Grand Wagoneer L?

    1. I would love having a funky local Mitsubishi/Dacia/Skoda/Lada dealer. They’d probably run zany promotions like “buy a Duster, get a free Niva strapped to the roof rack for free!”

  2. A Jeep “Suburban”, just what America needs. As for the BMW, the grille looks larger than the engine in my BMW motorcycle!
    The Grand Wagoneer only has a 1 mpg improvement over the hemi? That doesn’t appear to be as efficient as it should be.

  3. Subaru: why would an electric brake booster ‘affect the pedal feel’? I don’t think it matters how the boost is created, the pedal feel is a result of how this boost is being employed. If everything else is unchanged, the pedal feel should be exactly the same, right?

      1. > Correct, the problem is that because the boost is being controlled by software and provided by a pump, it doesn’t always feel natural.

        But the boost is created by a pump in both cases, the difference is only how the pump is driven (by the engine or by an electric motor). At the pedal level, you won’t feel a difference, there is just boost. At least logically that’s how it should be.

        1. One difference is that most of these systems use a very small master cylinder piston diameter, which reduces the actual mechanical feedback in the system (which you can observe by disconnecting the battery and watching the pedal feel go absolutely soft). Another is that in a vacuum system, the engine is pulling vacuum with a comparatively infinite volume versus the displacement of the booster, so the assist is quite analog and instantaneous. The electric booster has to very closely tailor the displacement to match your input in order to keep up with your inputs without over/undershoot and you can’t really package a huge accumulator to make the reaction more analog.

    1. It’s the same thing as hydraulic/electric power steering. I’ve been tinkering with brake pads for track days and there is such a thing as brake feel with a pneumatic booster, so an electrified version can fuck up a good thing.

      1. But electric power steering is very different from hydraulic power steering: instead of hydraulic boost, you’ve got a little electric motor, mounted on the steering rack, that helps with the steering. But with an electric brake booster, it’s still the same principle: you have a hydraulic pump that creates boost, the only difference is that this pump is driven by an electric motor instead of using the engine, via a pulley and a belt. Ask yourself: if you had hydraulic power steering, but with an electric pump instead of a pump driven by the engine, would there be a difference in steering feel? I think not.
        *There was a Japanese car, I think back in the 1990s (maybe a Honda, but I’m not sure) that had the setup I just described (hydraulic power steering with an electric pump).

        1. There is a lot more power available via mechanical power steering pumps than 12v electric power steering pumps, and the few iterations of such pumps that have been implemented on mass produced automobiles have as such been tied to racks with more mechanical advantage (less feedback) and my understanding is that they don’t really keep up with sprited driving when tied to a conventional rack.

  4. I cut my teeth on I6 engines. First learned wrenching with an old guy that worked on English and Italian exotics, so saw plenty of Jaguars. First car was a ’67 Mustang with the 200ci I6, then my first truck was a ’93 F150 with the 4.9L I6. Still have them both and both of them are still running strong.

    As a lifelong fan of the I6, albeit with Fords instead of Jeeps, I am irrationally excited to see them return to domestic production (again, after GM stopped making the wonderful Atlas 4200)

    Viva I6!

  5. For cheap entry level cars we may be forced to consume products from the CCP. Oh joy. But as long as Americans from all walks of life want ginormous trucks and SUV, and ridiculous prices, companies will build them.

  6. That 2023 Outback didn’t miss one single branch on it’s fall from the ugly tree. They now call it the Outback because that’s where owners will keep it, Out Back so they don’t have to see it in front of the house. I’d run it into a few bollards just to pretty it up with some dents. This thing makes the TRD Corolla seem staid.

    Signed,
    That guy who bought a manual, limited slip, turbo wagon back in 05 and still hasn’t given it up.

  7. I like the comment on the Hurricane 6 being equivalent to a 4.5L NA motor considering how much air it is sucking in. I always liked this description of boosted engines. Most people don’t get it, and this is a good way to explain it.Drive it conservatively, and you will see power and consumption on par with the displacement advertised. Get into it, and see the power and consumption consistent with the increase in air being displaced (at a higher pressure).

    1. Well, They would probably sue anyone who tries to slap wood paneling on the sides of anything else non-Jeep, because Jeep loves to sue. Why they don’t include any wood grain is beyond me. I’d be happy with a tasteful strip of the real stuff on the rear hatch or something. The Wagoneer could get away with it unlike other marques/models…

  8. “Locking what might be the greatest safety advancement to the top trim seems a little scummy to me”

    It is scummy, and it is also exactly how these companies generally do things. Backup cameras were options until they were mandated. Blind spot monitoring and AEB were on higher trims until they trickled down. As long as the safety testing isn’t dinging them for not including good pedestrian detection, they won’t be motivated to include it across the board.

  9. A 3 year old CPO used car is the new entry level car. Americans generally buy cars “in bulk”, ie biggest for the cheapest. In that mentality spending $25k on a new compact isn’t worth it when a 3 year old Camry is the same price.

    American market small cars historically have been garbage compared to overseas offerings, the exceptions being the Asian makes and the entry luxury cars. That soured generations on the idea that a small car is worth owning. And led America to the idea that since a small car is garbage it should be dirt cheap. That leads us to today. People would rather spend money on a larger used car than a smaller new one. Add in the current supply crunch, and making a larger/more profitable/easier to sell vehicle makes more sense than making a vehicle that doesn’t have as much appeal.

  10. I find it curious that in a write up about the X7 facelift there was no image of said face, and that the only link leading to an image of said face is in the last paragraph (well after you were finished describing said face) and vague “BWM”. I know I am picking nits here, but if for some reason you couldn’t use an image of the front of the X7 for the write up then at least that link should have been connected to the word “facelift” in the second sentence thereby giving the reader an image to go with the description.

    1. Was just about to write this. Not a huge deal but still something that could be adjusted to make it make more sense. I didn’t keep reading beyond the first few sentences and just scrolled down to the Outback because an X7 facelift writeup without the image is kind of worthless so I had no idea there was a link to the actual front end.

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