Midsize SUV; Built in USA
  • 4-door wagon
  • longitudinal front-engine/rear- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $9,200 – $25,000*


2006 Jeep Commander


2006 Jeep Commander


2006 Jeep Commander


2006 Jeep Commander

Pros:
  • Cargo room
  • Quietness
  • Front-seat comfort
  • Ride
Cons:
  • Acceleration (V6)
  • Fuel economy
  • Steering/handling

Commander strikes a decent balance between comfort and utility. With its square-rigged styling and seating for seven, this SUV gives Jeep buyers an alternative to the sportier Grand Cherokee–even though the two are similar under the skin. Though it sacrifices some sportiness for a softer ride, the Commander retains the brand’s familiar off-road prowess. Commanders do fall short in third-row accommodations, but with either V8, this is a good choice for shoppers planning to tow or venture off the beaten path. Well-equipped Commanders have been pricey when new, coming close to premium SUVs that are more refined and frugal–though more costly secondhand.

Overview

Jeep added a second midsize sport-utility vehicle for 2006, sharing its basic architecture with the Grand Cherokee. Seating seven, the Commander was 2 inches longer overall than the Grand Cherokee, which seated five. With the new Commander, Jeep competed against the Dodge Durango, Ford Explorer, and Toyota 4Runner.

Base and Limited models were offered. Standard on the base model was a 210-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6. Standard on the Limited and optional for the base Commander was a 235-horsepower, 4.7-liter V8. Available for the Limited was Chrysler’s 330-horsepower 5.7-liter Hemi V8. The 5.7 had Chrysler’s Multi-Displacement System, which deactivated four cylinders at idle and during cruising, to save fuel.

Commander’s sole transmission was a five-speed automatic with manual-shift capability. V6 and 4.7-liter V8 models could have either rear- or all-wheel drive. The Hemi V8 came only with AWD. Each V8 used its own AWD system, but both included low-range gearing (which was unavailable for the AWD V6). AWD V8s offered optional front and rear limited-slip differentials.

All Commanders had antilock four-wheel disc brakes, tire-pressure monitor, 17-inch wheels, rear obstacle detection, and a rear liftgate with separate-opening glass. An antiskid system with rollover sensors was standard. Standard curtain side airbags provided head and torso protection for the first and second seating rows.

Other options included rear DVD entertainment and Chrysler’s UConnect, which used the audio system as a hands-free wireless link to cell phones. Also available were a navigation system, power-adjustable pedals, heated front seats, satellite radio, and an off-road package.

Yearly Updates

2007 Commander
A new top-of-the-line model went on sale for 2007. Called the Overland (a name used by Jeep before), the top model featured unique exterior and interior trim. Chrysler’s Hemi V8 was standard in the Overland and optional for the Limited model. Low-range gearing was standard on AWD Overland and Limited Commanders. Newly available features included remote-start and a power liftgate.
2008 Commander
The Sport model now came standard with five-passenger seating; the previously standard third row was now optional. Standard on Limiteds and optional on Sports was a 305-hp 4.7-liter V8, which replaced a 235-hp 4.7.
2009 Commander
Newly standard on Overland and optional on Limited was a 357-hp 5.7-liter Hemi V8 with Chrysler’s Multi Displacement System cylinder deactivation. That represented a boost of 27 hp over the 2008 5.7 V8 models.
2010 Commander
The 2010 Jeep Commander was largely unchanged.

Engines

longitudinal front-engine/rear- or all-wheel drive

Three engines have been available in Commanders, each driving a five-speed automatic transmission with manual-shift capability. Base models held a 210-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6, or could be equipped with a 235-horsepower, 4.7-liter V8 that was standard on the Limited. Available for Limited (and standard on the Overland that debuted for 2007) was Chrysler’s 330-horsepower, 5.7-liter Hemi V8 with a Multi-Displacement System that deactivates four cylinders under light load, to save fuel. Standard on Limiteds and optional on Sports in 2008 was a 305-hp 4.7-liter V8. This engine replaced a 235-hp 4.7 V8. Standard for 2009 on Overland and optional on Limited was a 357-hp 5.7-liter Hemi V8 with Chrysler’s Multi Displacement System cylinder deactivation. That represented a boost of 27 hp over the 2008 5.7-liter V8 models.

ohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.7/226
Engine HP 210
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 235
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic

16/19

14

ohc V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.7/287
Engine HP 235-305
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 305-334
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic

15/19

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 5.7/345
Engine HP 330-357
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 375
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic

14/19

12.1

Road Test

Commander shares the Grand Cherokee’s drivetrains, but weighs 400 pounds more, blunting acceleration when the two models are compared. Still, it’s helped by an alert automatic transmission. A V6 Commander shows surprising spirit and adequate power around town, but it’s slow to move from a stop and provides frustratingly little reserve power for passing or merging. Power is satisfying with the smooth and strong Hemi 5.7 V8. If properly equipped, Commanders are rated to tow up to 7400 pounds.

An AWD V6 Commander averaged an unimpressive 14 mpg, but AWD Limiteds with the 5.7 V8 managed only 11.6 to 12.5 mpg. Jeep recommends 87-octane fuel for V6 and 4.7 V8 models, but 89-octane or higher for the 5.7 V8.

Ride quality is quite good for an SUV–especially one that’s suited to severe off-road duty. Commander suspensions absorb most bumps with little harshness, and their solid-feeling structure enhances the impression of carlike comfort. With its slightly softer suspension tuning, though, the Commander floats over dips and swells at highway speeds more than Grand Cherokee.

Balanced, stable and secure on the road, the Commander demonstrates good straightline stability. Unfortunately, its tall build results in pronounced body lean, which compels slowing down for tight, fast turns. Steering has nice heft and good feedback. Braking is strong.

Commanders score among the quietest truck-type SUVs. All models muffle tire and wind noise well, but engines emit a refined growl when accelerating.

Easily read gauges and simple, logically placed switchgear highlight Commander dashboards. Most climate adjustments are handled by rotary knobs, which is a plus. But the optional navigation system absorbs too many audio functions, and takes time to learn and adjust. The base-model interior is austere for its class, and the Sport isn’t much better. Stepping to the top, the Limited’s extra trim and leather upholstery create an upscale ambience.

Six-footers can expect ample front head, leg, and shoulder room, but flattish seat bottoms lack support for longer trips. Visibility is good all-around, though third-row headrests obscure the rearward view unless seatbacks are folded down. Large door openings permit easy entry/exit. Head and legroom are adequate for most adults in the rear, but over-firm seats curtail long-trip support and comfort. A high roof, elevated theater-style seating, and generous glass area add to a sense of space inside. Three-abreast seating is comfortable for brief trips. Though easy enough to access, the cramped third row is best left for kids. Getting into the back isn’t so easy, due to a tall step-in and modest door openings.

Generous cargo space is made more useful by the Commander’s wide, flat floor and a large hatch opening. However, the high cargo floor means straining to load larger/heavier items. The unique second-row seatbacks fold into three even sections, allowing multiple seating/storage configurations.

Ratings

Model Tested: Jeep Commander Sport AWD w/V6

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 3
30%
Fuel Economy - 3
30%
Ride Quality - 6
60%
Steering/Handling - 4
40%
Quietness - 7
70%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Front - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Rear - 5
50%
Cargo Room - 8
80%

Other

Value - 4
40%

Total: 54

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
109.5 188.5 74.8 71.9
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
68.9 21.1 7
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
42.1 40.3 41.7 36.1
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2007 Commander 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
100%
Front Passenger Injury - 5
100%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Climate control
Description: The displayed temperature on the automatic temperature control system drifts, is slow to change or suddenly switches from hot to cold, the ATC control module may need to be reprogrammed or replaced. (2006)
Power seat
Description: The steering column and seat memory may work intermittently requiring reprogramming of the system. (2006)
Windows
Description: The windows may not close when using express up due to pinching by tracks or loose hardware or sticking due to ice requiring possible repairs followed by resetting (normalizing) the system. (2006-07)
Windows
Description: The express up function of the windows may reverse causing the windows to go back down due to malfunctioning window regulator. (2006-08)
Glovebox
Description: Rattling noise from behind glove box due to debris in blower housing requires improved fresh air intake screen. (2006-08)
Electrical problem
Description: The tailgate ajar warning light may come on accompanied by the interior lights and chime due to a wire for the tailgate shorting to ground and swapping the wires fixes it. (2007-08)
None
Description: Squawking from rear on rough roads requires new spring isolators. 2006-08)
Transmission problems
Description: The filter in the transmission fluid cooler line may allow the torque converter to drain down causing delayed engagement when started after cold soak and a revised filter is available. (2006)
Check-engine light
Description: The check engine light and/or loose gas cap warning may come on despite the cap being on tightly, requiring the light to be reset using a scan tool. (2006)
Interior trim
Description: The headliner storage pocket comes loose or falls off. (2006-07)

Recall History

2006 Commander
Description: Integrated retractor bracket edge on third-row seat may contact seatbelt, causing damage to webbing that could result in improper restraint during a crash.
2006 Commander with 4.7-liter V8 engine
Description: The powertrain control module (PCM) was programmed with software that may allow the engine to stall under certain operating conditions. Dealers will reprogram the PCM software for vehicles built prior to January 11, 2006.
2006-07 Commander
Description: The software in the ABS electronic control module may allow a momentary delay in braking when coasting uphill during certain conditions, which may result in a crash without warning. Dealers will reprogram the ABS electronic control module with new software that prevents this condition.
2006-2010 Commander
Description: A transfer-case electrical failure could cause the transfer case to shift into neutral unintentionally.
2007-2008 Commander
Description: Front brake calipers of a certain lot may have been manufactured from an inferior type of iron, and may fracture without warning. Dealers will inspect the brake calipers to see if they fall into this lot, and, if so, replace them.
2008 Commander
Description: The front control module may have been incorrectly manufactured. This could cause the engine to stall while driving or fail to start and/or cause the windshield wipers to become inoperative. Dealers will inspect the module and replace it if necessary.
2009 Commander
Description: Wiring may be reversed on the steering column control module driver airbag squib connector. The driver’s airbag may not deploy as intended. Dealers will inspect the driver’s airbag squib wires and replace the steering column control module free of charge.
2010 Commander
Description: These vehicles may have been built with an improperly formed or missing brake booster input rod retaining clip. This could result in brake failure without warning, which could cause a crash. Chrysler will replace the brake booster input rod retaining clip free of charge.
2010 Commander
Description: Vehicles may have been built with an improperly manufactured rear track bar. Reduced vehicle stability could occur increasing the risk of a crash. Dealers will inspect the rear track bar bushing retaining hoop and replace the rear track bar if any are found to be mis-positioned.
2010 Commander
Description: These vehicles may have been built with a wireless ignition node (WIN) module exhibiting a binding condition of the solenoid latch. The result of the defect could lead to a condition where the key may be removed from the ignition switch (WIN module) prior to placing the shifter in park. This could result in the potential for unintended vehicle movement and could increase the risk of a crash. Dealers will inspect and replace the WIN module free of charge.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.