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Jeep head of design Ralph Gilles apologized in an interview for not bringing back the Grand Wagoneer sooner.

"The times were not quite right at the time," says Mr. Gilles, in an interview following the global reveal of the Jeep Grand Wagoneer Concept that is a precursor to the short wheelbase version of the top-end SUV which goes on sale next summer for the 2022 model year. There will also be a long-wheelbase version, and it will be part of a larger Wagoneer family with two sizes of a more affordable, mainstream three-row, as well.

"Had this vehicle been born 10 years ago, I don't think we would have executed it as well," says Gilles. "There is luxury in every square centimeter of this vehicle. "My team 10 years ago wasn't ready for that." Since then, a lot has been learned, from other parts of the company, about how to build luxury vehicles.

"A lot of things had to align, whether it was our know-how, our capabilities, the platforms available to us, but honestly our confidence in the fact that the segment is very stable," says Gilles. "Clearly looking back now, yes, we probably should have tried to get it out sooner, but I think our customers are still ready for it."

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