This weekend our spy photographers, caught a lone 2019 Jeep Commander PHEV (Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle) testing out late at night on the streets of Metro Detroit. As many of you know, the Jeep Commander (K8) is a 5-passenger midsize Jeep for the Chinese market and is based on the Jeep Cherokee (KL) with a slightly longer wheelbase. Jeep also has a Grand Commander version, which adds a third row seating to make the vehicle seat 7-passengers for the Chinese market as well.
Thanks to platform and parts sharing, the recently Commander PHEV, will use many of the components and lessons learned from the popular Pacifica Hybrid. Commander PHEV will use a similar continuously variable transmission with two motors, but instead of using the Pacifica Hybrid 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 connected to a one-way clutch to drive the vehicle when the batteries are low, it uses the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder from the Cherokee (KL).
In the earlier spy photos we posted, you are able to see that the Commander PHEV has filler doors on both sides of the vehicle, below the glass for the third row. While the passenger side has the filler door for the gas tank, the driver side features a filler door that opens to feature the 240-volt charging system for the battery pack.
The Commander PHEV was shown publicly in China, last April. According to Jeep China, the vehicle will cost about 279,800 yuan (which equals out to $41,720 USD or $55,430 CAD). While Jeep China hasn’t released any official numbers on the Commander PHEV, it is said that the fuel economy of the Commander PHEV is “less than 2 liters per 100 kilometers” or about 117.6 mpg while running on electric power. If that is true, the much heavier Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid with its larger 3.6-liter V6 engine is rated at 84 mpg-e officially on electric power… so the number could be very true.
The Grand Commander PHEV will have an all digital gauge cluster, unlike the standard production Jeep Grand Commander and Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. It also appears that Grand Commander will showcase an electronic all-wheel drive (AWD) system, where there is no driveshaft from the transmission to turn the rear wheels (since the Grand Commander is front-wheel drive or FWD based). However, the vehicle will have a separate electric motor(s) system to turn the rear wheels when the wheels detect slippage.
Jeep has made several announcements about their intentions to offer electric offers across their lineups. The Commander PHEV, is just the first step of to achieving the brand’s goal. Jeep is rumored to be showing off two new PHEV models at the Geneva Motor Show this week. Those models will be the long awaited Jeep Renegade PHEV and we might just see a Jeep Compass PHEV as well. Stay tuned…
2019 Jeep Commander/Grand Commander PHEV Image Gallery: