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Have you driven a 2006 Jeep Commander?
Average User Score
4.5 ⁄ 5 stars
Based on 34 reviews
2006 Jeep Commander Overview
Overall User Score
Based on 34 reviews
2006 was the debut year for the aptly-named Commander, a somewhat imposing SUV whose appearance is undeniably military. This is the largest vehicle ever built by Jeep, and its inclusion of a third-row seat put it in contention with other manufacturers that produce seven-passenger SUVs.
The look is based on the original Willys-Overland, the old Wagoneer, and the unforgotten Cherokee, but the actual vehicle is based on the Grand Cherokee. They share a wheelbase (but the Commander is two inches longer in body) and most mechanical specs. The Commander is noticeably taller than the Grand Cherokee, especially since it features stadium seating and the accompanying stepped roof.
This original lineup of Commanders consisted of a pair of trims, the base model known simply as Commander (it would be renamed Sport for '07) and the better-appointed Limited. Buyers could choose from three engines, three 4WD systems, and two transfer cases.
Safety was a big consideration in the design of this SUV, and its standard equipment included ABS, traction and stability control, electronic roll mitigation, and side-curtain air bags for all three rows.
Cargo space is at a premium, though, if all three rows of seats are in use. With a full passenger load on an overnight trip, the rooftop and/or tow-behind cargo-carrying equipment is a necessity. Otherwise, with a smaller crowd aboard, the second and third rows can split and fold flat.
Exposed bolt heads added to the no-nonsense, military appearance of the Commander; look at the fenders for an example. There is even some of this on the interior, although a few are false ones put in just for show. (Why bother?)
As expected with a big and boxy behemoth (curb weight approaches 5000 lbs.), fuel economy is nothing to brag about (only the V6 can claim as high as 20 mph - highway, of course). As for mechanical reliability, according to anecdotal accounts, later-built units seemed to fare better, which is not a surprise with any first-year car.