The Jeep Commander is not quite as straightforward as the Jeep Compass. The It comes in three models, each of which has a different engine, and kicks things off with a 3.7-liter V-6, a 4.7-liter V-8, and a 5.7-liter V-8 option. The Sport model is a compact sport utility vehicle that seats five people. The other two models are more traditional sport utility vehicles that seat seven. The Sport model has a five-speed automatic transmission, 210 horsepower, and 235 lb.-feet of torque. The Limited model has five-speed automatic transmission, 305 horsepower, and 334 lb-ft of torque. The Overland model has five-speed automatic transmission, 330 horsepower, and 375 lb-ft of torque. It is obvious that the main difference in these models is the size and power of the engine. The engine in the mid-model has been completely revised and offers a compromise in power that will suit the needs of most consumers. Depending on equipment and setup, the 2008 Jeep Commander can tow up to 7400 pounds. Be forewarned that it is a gas guzzler. All three models offer the choice of rear or four-wheel drive, and the drive train system gets nicer as the models progress.
Body styles: four-door compact SUV, four-door full-size SUV
Engines: 3.7-liter V-6, 4.7-liter V-8, 5.7-liter V-8
Transmissions: five-speed automatic
Models: Jeep Commander Sport, Jeep Commander Limited, Jeep Commander Overland
The most significant change is the addition of a new and more compact five-seater to the 2008 Jeep Commander lineup. This five seat model is reminiscent of the Jeep Compass. Another big change is the revision of the Limited's engine. The engine remains the same size, but horsepower has been increased by 70. The last improvement for 2008 is the addition of a lot of new entertainment technology.
The Jeep Commander looks a lot like the Jeep Cherokee. It rides on the same wheelbase but is a little taller and noticeably longer. The Limited and Overland are more traditional in design, and some may complain about the boxy exterior that resembles the 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Most exterior features remain constant throughout the models. But of course, the exterior offers a smaller look in the five-passenger Sport. One can also order a Sport model that seats seven. Tire size is another difference. The first two models sport 17-inch wheels, the Outlander 18-inch wheels.
In the third year of production, Jeep Commander offers a smaller five-seat model to this line of full-sized sport utility vehicles that were designed for mass transport of people, not cargo. Measly cargo capacity remains a problem. The seven-seat Limited and Outlander can hold quite a few passengers, but the third row of seats was designed with children in mind and can be cramped for adults. Another interior update adds a bunch of new entertainment technology. Interior design is pretty straightforward and does not vary a whole lot depending on the model.
Performance & Handling
The tall height and rugged suspension make it pretty un-car like. The off-road ability is a definite plus for some. Those who do not want or need off-road capability might opt for a smaller, more fuel efficient SUV.
All three model of the 2008 Jeep Commander come equipped with pretty much the same safety features. All of them have anti-lock disc brakes, stability control, traction control, rollover mitigation, and full length side curtain airbags. The only difference is the navigation system. The Sport and Limited models have the option of a navigation system as an option, which comes standard in the Overland model. The 2008 Jeep Commander scored perfectly on frontal impact crash testing.
EPA Fuel Economy
Jeep Commander Sport V-6: 14/19 mpg city/highway
Jeep Commander Limited V-8: 13/18 mpg city/highway
Jeep Commander Overland V-8: 13/17 mpg city/highway
- More powerful engine in middle model
- Smaller five-seat model available
- New entertainment technology
You Won't Like
- Blocky exterior
- Meager cargo room
- Cramped third-row seats
- Disappointing fuel economy
A massive sport utility vehicle with plenty of seating but suffers from bulky drivability and limited cargo space.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Jeep Compass
- Jeep Grand Cherokee