Jeep Grand Cherokee Review
Of the quintessential mid-size luxury SUVs in the market, lies the Jeep Grand Cherokee. It got a makeover in 2014 from its prior model without losing much of its legacy. Walking in the streets full of Cherokees and thirsting to know what it offers?
Powertrain and Performance
The Jeep Grand Cherokee puts forth quite an array of models: Laredo, Overland, Limited, Summit and SRT. The base powerhouse under the hood for these models is the 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine (295hp). If more power is your love then the 5.7L Hemi V8 (360hp, 390lb-ft torque) will do you some major good, as well as the torque-wealthy 3.0L diesel V6 (240hp, 420lb-ft torque). Top of the class for the Grand Cherokee is the 475hp-cum-425lb ft Hemi V8 (475hp, 425lb-ft torque).
All models constitute a 2WD and 4WD options, save for the SRT model which has 4WD only. There’s also an 8-speed paddle shift automatic transmission across the board as well as a Selec-Terrain chassis control system. An Electronic Limited Slip Differential (ELSD) system is available to provide up to 100% of torque to the wheels at your call. That’s pretty much all you need in a variety of climatic conditions you’re driving in, off-road or on track.
Dubbed the Quadra-Lift Air Suspension, this optional air suspension will allow the driver to raise or lower the vehicle for desired ground clearance. However, the system is at its best when automatically tuning the Jeep to “Aero” ride height when you’re hitting the higher numbers on your dial.
The gearbox and variable valve timing system have been improved for extra power and fuel economy. There’s an inclusion for eco mode at the push of a button on the instrument panel, which schedules gear shifting and adjusts throttle sensitivity for better fuel economy. Cylinder deactivation is also present in the Cherokee.
Fuel consumption on this SUV hits around 19mpg-30mpg.
0-60mph time is around 7.9sec for the Cherokee, with sport mode still available for the vehicle but activated by the shift lever.
Thanks to the power under the hood, the JGC has a towing capacity of 6200lbs, with the SRT model stretching the limit to 7200lbs. The vehicle therefore proves itself as a very useful SUV, whether you’re towing a caravan for a camp, off-roading, cruising around the city or any form of outings. Pretty much what you’d look for in an SUV, yes?
Exterior and Interior Features
Most of the models come with optional upgrade packs, but they share many of those options.
On the outside, the 2016 model has a more squinted look but the trademark Grand Cherokee look is still maintained. The grille is more curved vertically, but design-wise remains the same as previous editions. Bi-xenon headlamps are available with signature LED daytime running lights.
The Laredo dons 17” alloy wheels, the Limited 18”,while the Overland, Summit and SRT models share 20” wheels with the SRT model ones being black.
Keyless entry and ignition is provided too.
The interior of the car is greatly done and very comfortable. It offers a nice mix of premium leather trims and real wood accents (even on the steering, for higher models), giving that important ambience of luxury. A power controlled dual-paned panoramic sunroof and sunshade serves to give the 5-seater interior an airy and spacious feel. Cargo space is roughly 36 cubic feet with all seats up, and 68 cubic feet when the back seats are folded down.
The 3-spoke steering wheel is well weighted, accurate, and has quite a number of buttons by virtue of there being space created by the 3 spokes. Paddle shifters are also provided for each model of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
UConnect Touchscreen system is provided in every model, with size of the touch screen varying for the higher models and the lower ones (5” for the Laredo and 8.4” for the Limited, Overland, Summit and SRT). There’s voice command and recognition, as well as a nice sound system ranging from 5-speaker in the Laredo to 19-speaker in the Summit and SRT. Access to roadside assistance and emergency 911 calls is made possible at the push of a button.
Security and Safety
The Jeep Grand Cherokee features 7 airbags – for the driver, front passenger, knee airbags and supplemental side curtain airbags. A number of systems are also built into the vehicle for extra security; including blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control while traversing the highways, forward collision warning for accident mitigation and parking assist with rear view parking cameras and sensors.
Hill Descent Control (HDC), antilock Brembo brakes and stability & traction control add you that extra control should you be in a sticky driving situation.
If you’re looking for an SUV with an all-rounder approach, then the Jeep Grand Cherokee is definitely a go for you. Everything is well done and given attention to, to create a comfy and seamless drive. The diesel engine may give some unwarranted noise in the vehicle especially at low speeds, but the vehicle has a few noise cancelling tech “up its sleeve” to offer a much smoother ride.