Before it was renamed Sport for 2007, the base-level Commander simply used the model name. Its trims were the 4x4 and also a 4x2.
Two four-wheel-drive systems were made available for the '06 buyer to choose from. The Quadra-Trac I, a traditional part-time system for use on loose or slippery surfaces only; the Quadra-Trac II, a full-time active system that could be left engaged on dry pavement. The latter system was an option only in conjunction with the optional V8.
The base Commander may not have been given all of the bonuses of the Limited, but it still came quite nicely appointed with luxuries as well as life-savers. Every Commander received a full set of air bags, including side-curtain units for all three rows of seating, and the Electronic Stability Program, which integrates ABS with traction and stability control as well as electronic roll mitigation. The vehicle earned a full 5 stars in the NHTSA's frontal crash tests (it didnÃ¯Â¿Â½?Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â¢Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â¯Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â¿Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â½?Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â¯Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â¿Ã¯Â¿Â½?Ã?Â½?t fare as well in the rollover test, where it only scored a 3).
But the attention-getter on this SUV is its third-row seat. Although the seat is by wide opinion considered quite cramped, it's there, and sometimes that is enough. It has its own climate-control system, and there's even an available set of fixed-panel skylights (with sunshades) for kicks. They come as part of the package with the power sunroof, an option on this trim.
Other comforts and conveniences on this trim include cruise control, keyless entry, power locks and windows, power-adjustable driver's seat, tilt-wheel, trip computer, and a 5-speed automatic transmission with overdrive.
The standard engine is a 3.7-liter, 210-horsepower V6 (235 lb.-ft. of torque at 4000 rpm), which may be considered inadequate for such a foreboding SUV. The available 4.7-liter V8, providing 235 horses, was the remedy, turning in 305 lb.-ft. of torque at 3500 rpm.
Optional extras include a DVD entertainment system, a navigation system with 6-CD changer (in-dash), the aforementioned sunroof/skylight package, limited slip differentials, remote start, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and heated seats.
The 2006 Commander seems to be guilty of wind noise, poor gas mileage, and V6 weakness. As with other Jeep vehicles, the cloth upholstery is said to stain readily, even with mere rainwater. Opinions varied on the quality of the ride and handling and the comfort of the seats. Most buyers of this vehicle were in love with its looks and the simple fact that it's a Jeep and truly looks the part.