The 2007 Jeep Commander is a carryover design from 2006, shown here. It is based on the Grand Cherokee platform and shares almost all major mechanicals. Since the Commander is quite a bit taller than the Grand Cherokee, rear seats can be arranged stadium style, which improves forward visibility for all backseat passengers.
The midnight blue pearl Commander we tested was outfitted in the Limited trim level, which is up-market from the base level. Both model lines bring a wealth of standard and optional features such as power windows and door locks, air conditioning, a power driver's seat, a CD player and 17-inch alloy wheels. The Limited package is loaded with extras, from automatic dual-zone climate control to a moon-roof, a telescoping and vertically adjustable steering wheel, and a Boston acoustics audio system with in-dash CD changer and satellite radio. And those are just for starters.
The trail-rated Commander we tried out came with adjustable roof racks and a double-opening tailgate with hinged rear glass and conventional tailgate accessibility.
There's a full slate of powertrain choices for the Commander starting with the standard 3.7-liter V6 that makes 210 horsepower and 235 pound feet of torque to the base engine in the Limited series, a 4.7-liter V8 with 235 horsepower and 305 pound feet of torque to the optional engine for the Limited, a 5.7-liter V8 producing 330 horsepower and 375 pound feet of torque.
Depending on which of four trim levels you choose: Sport, Rocky Mountain, Limited or Overland, the Commander's engine can be hitched to Quadra-Trac I (one) a full-time all-wheel drive system, the advanced Quadra-Trac II 4-wheel drive system with a two-speed transfer case, or the Quadra-Drive II system which combines a full-time two-speed transfer case with electronic limited-slip differentials front, center and rear, ideal for venturing into the wild.
2007 Jeep Commanders are also available in rear-wheel drive only. The 4.7-liter V8 Commander like the one we drove is rated to pull 7200 pounds.
Carrying capacity ranges from 7.5 cubic feet with the rear seat in place to an ample 68.9 cubic feet with both rear seats folded down.
The base MSRP for the 2007 Jeep Commander with 4-wheel drive is $30,955. Dig deeply into the available options and you'll be somewhere in mid 40-thousand dollar territory.
But if you're one of those died-in-the-wool Jeep disciples who have been waiting for a rugged, roomy, and resilient SUV with 7-passenger seating, the new Commander will be worth every cent.