Thanks to the widespread impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the prospect of domestic travel has never been quite as prevalent.
With interstate border closures seemingly almost behind us, many Australians will soon take to local roads for their next big getaway.
Those needing to cater for big trips are in luck, with plenty of action in the four-wheel-drive sector in 2022.
In addition, people wishing to purchase a new dual-cab ute or 4x4 SUV are also treated to a number of new arrivals – spearheaded by a next-generation version of one of the nation’s most-favoured vehicles.
Timing issues caused by the global semiconductor chip shortage and COVID-19 lockdowns, which plagued the automotive industry in 2021, are set to remain throughout 2022. This means several vehicles on this list are either delayed beyond initial projections, or could be delayed.
NOTE: To see all the new cars coming to Australia this year, check out our 2022 New Car Calendar story right here.
New 4x4s arriving in 2022
- Ford Everest
- Ford Ranger
- Ineos Grenadier
- Jeep Grand Cherokee
- Lexus LX
- Mazda BT-50
- Volkswagen Amarok W580X.
NOTE: A quarter refers to a three-month period of the year (i.e. January to March).
Arriving: Late 2022
Ford has kicked off a teaser campaign for the next-generation Everest, ahead of its unveiling in the coming weeks.
The refreshed four-wheel-drive is set to follow the same footsteps as the all-new Ranger – albeit with a large SUV body above the frame.
Up front, the Everest is poised to look almost identical to its ute sibling, with C-shaped headlights and a chunkier grille, although the Everest will feature additional chrome highlights.
The side profile looks cleaner than the outgoing model, while the rear-end sports fresh new LED tail-lights connected by a piece of trim running across the larger tailgate.
Powertrains from the new Ranger will carry across to the Everest, with a choice of two four-cylinder turbo-diesel engines (single and bi-turbo) and a 3.0-litre V6 diesel.
Each will be matched to a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Developed in Australia, the 2022 Ford Everest currently remains in a final testing phase, although it is expected to launch in Australia before the end of the year.
Stay tuned, as we’ll know more details about the Everest when it is revealed in the first quarter of 2022.
Arriving: Ranger – first half; Ranger Raptor – later in 2022
After years of speculation, it’s finally here.
The next-generation ‘T6.2’ Ford Ranger is the first in 10 years, although it remains based on the same T6 platform as the outgoing model.
As before, the Ranger line-up will consist of XL, XLS, XLT and Wildtrak grades, while the special-edition Sport will become a permanent edition.
Entry-level variants will feature a new single-turbo 2.0-litre diesel, while the carryover bi-turbo four is expected to cover the broader mix.
However, the big news is the addition of a 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 pulled from the F-150.
Exact figures have yet to be confirmed, but the six-cylinder donk is expected to produce around 185kW of power and 600Nm of torque.
Each engine will be coupled to a 10-speed automatic transmission, with a six-speed manual gearbox exclusive on the base 2.0-litre mill.
With most of the design and engineering work completed in Australia, Ford has adapted the Ranger to better meet the evolving needs of local consumers.
Inside, the Ranger features a larger portrait-orientated touchscreen, available in 10.1- and 12-inch sizes. There is also an 8-inch digital instrument cluster, which will be standard across the range.
Ford will again partner up with ARB to provide factory-backed accessories for the new Ranger and Ranger Raptor.
Full pricing and specification details for the 2022 Ford Ranger will be announced closer to the ute’s Australian launch in the first half of the year.
The Baja-inspired 2022 Ford Ranger Raptor is expected to join the range by the end of the year, following its upcoming global reveal on February 22.
Arriving: Fourth quarter
A traditional live-axle four-wheel-drive might be getting rarer than ever, but 2022 will see the addition of a new old-school off-roader.
Joining the Toyota LandCruiser 70 Series, Jeep Wrangler and Suzuki Jimny, the live-axle Grenadier will be offered initially as a five-door wagon, priced from $84,500 before on-road costs. A four-door double-cab pick-up will follow in the coming years.
First deliveries of Ineos Grenadier wagon are set to occur late in 2022, with buyers currently able to place an order.
The idea behind the Grenadier stemmed from the need for a traditional four-wheel-drive utility vehicle following the discontinuation of the classic Land Rover Defender in 2016.
The entry-level model is a two-seat commercial variant, with four- and five-seaters also available. A range of accessories will be offered to assist with various owner requirements.
Ineos will support the off-roader with a five-year/unlimited-kilometre warranty, along with a five-year service plan.
Petrol and diesel six-cylinder engines supplied by BMW are backed by ZF automatic transmissions, with each powerplant at the same cost.
The 2022 Ineos Grenadier will touch down in Australia during the fourth quarter of the year.
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Arriving: Grand Cherokee L– first half; Grand Cherokee – fourth quarter
First scheduled to arrive in late 2021, the Jeep Grand Cherokee will instead arrive in the first half of this year.
Set to initially debut in long-wheelbase V6 form, the 4x4 line-up will be finalised in the fourth quarter of 2022 with the addition of the regular wheelbase version – plus the diesel-replacing PHEV powertrain.
In the United States, the Grand Cherokee will retain its 5.7-litre V8, however, local options will be limited to the naturally-aspirated 3.6-litre six and the 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol-electric hybrid found in the Wrangler 4xe.
Diesel power has been dropped for this generation.
The next-generation swaps the ageing WK platform – once also found underneath SUV models from Mercedes-Benz in the mid-2000s – for an all-new architecture sharing bits and pieces with the Alfa Romeo Stelvio.
Jeep has conducted local engineering work on the Grand Cherokee to better suit it to harsh Australian roads and towing conditions, with both models rated to carry up to 3200 kilograms.
The 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee L will arrive in Australia within the first six months of the year, with local pricing and specifications details to be announced closer to launch.
Australian information regarding the standard-wheelbase 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee will be revealed towards the end of 2022.
If the Toyota LandCruiser 300 Series isn’t quite opulent enough, the next-generation Lexus LX could help.
Built on the same Toyota GA-F platform as the LC300, each features identical powertrain options and share the same 2850 millimetre wheelbase.
This means buyers can choose between a 3.5-litre twin-turbo petrol six with 305kW of power and 650Nm of torque in LX 600 form, or the LX 500d – using the 3.3-litre F33A-FTV diesel first introduced locally in the LC300 – at 227kW/700Nm.
Both engines send power to all four wheels through a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Set to be offered in four grades, the LX range kicks off with the base seven-seat variants, followed by the five-seat F Sport and Sports Luxury, and then the flagship four-seater Ultra Luxury – the latter of which is only available in LX 600 guise.
The latest Lexus Safety System+ active safety suite is included, with autonomous emergency braking, junction assist, emergency steering assist, adaptive cruise control, lane-tracing assist, adaptive high-beam, and traffic sign recognition.
Four-seater variants share a similar setup to the LS in the second-row, with reclining seats featuring massage functions that sit on either side of a centre console, controlled through a touchscreen.
Pricing details for the 2022 Lexus LX 600 and 2022 Lexus LX 500d models are still to be confirmed.
Mazda BT-50 update
Arriving: In showrooms now
Mazda has added a stripped-back version of the BT-50 for 2022.
The newest addition to the range, known as the BT-50 XS, swaps out the 3.0-litre diesel engine found across the range for a smaller 1.9-litre mill.
It produces 110kW of power and 350Nm of torque, which is down from the 140kW/450Nm figures of the 3.0-litre engine.
The XS otherwise shares equipment with the XT, apart from 17-inch steel wheels in place of alloys.
Along with the bottom-end XS grade, Mazda has also added a new SP range-topper.
It includes a range of cosmetic tweaks over the GT, including; a black grille, black 18-inch alloy wheels, a dark sailplane and cream leather combined with black suede upholstery in the cabin.
The new entry-level XS starts at a drive-away price of $38,490 for ABN buyers in 4x4 single cab chassis guise, with the XS 4x2 dual cab offered from $43,490 and the XS 4x4 dual cab at $51,490.
Available exclusively in 3.0-litre 4x4 dual cab form, the SP is priced at $62,990 drive-away with a manual transmission and $65,990 drive-away for the automatic.
The 2022 Mazda BT-50 XS and 2022 Mazda BT-50 SP are on sale now. You can check out our launch review of the BT-50 SP by clicking here.
Volkswagen Amarok W580X
Expected to arrive in showrooms in April, the off-road-focused Volkswagen Amarok W580X is a further addition to the locally-developed Walkinshaw range.
Upgrades include an in-built LED light bar in the front bumper, 18-inch forged alloy wheels with Pirelli Scorpion all-terrain tyres, and additional underbody protection – such as the 4mm-thick alloy bash plate fitted to the front bumper.
A differential breather kit for both front and rear has also been added, in addition to extra airflow to the gearbox and transfer case.
Volkswagen has added chunkier side steps to the Amarok W580X, while suspension upgrades included a 40mm height rise and thicker twin-tube shock absorbers tuned for off-road driving.
Under the bonnet, the W580X features the same 190kW/580Nm 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 as the road-focused W580S and V6 Ultimate grades.
The 2022 Volkswagen Amarok W580X V6 is due in April, with local pricing starting at $77,390 before on-road costs. Available options include premium paint, a Seikel snorkel and a luxury pack.
More details can be found by clicking here.