All this talk about new 2-row midsize SUVs has us thinking about one of our all-time favorites: the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Is it still tops? Let’s look into it.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee is one of the modern-era SUV pioneers. Just over 25 years ago, it became one of the most sought-after 4-wheeled vehicles in North America. In these last 2.5 decades, it has accumulated more awards than any SUV.
Fast-forward to 2019 and in a segment that consisted in the new Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Edge, Nissan Murano and to a lesser extent, the Toyota 4Runner, the Jeep Grand Cherokee faced competition based only on pricing. Things have changed dramatically in the last few months with the arrival of the new 2019 Chevrolet Blazer and the equally new 2019 Honda Passport.
Shopping for a 2-row midsized SUV has suddenly become slightly more complex. Although the Jeep is no value leader, does it deserve to be considered regardless? For other reasons? Let’s dive into the question.
Why you should buy a 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee:
- The 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee is the towing king in the segment, severely outclassing the others with a maximum capability of 7,200 lb with the proper gear.
- It’s a Jeep which means that it can and will conquer all types of terrains that strike fear in all the others.
- Despite its relative age, it is ageing gracefully. The Nissan Murano and Hyundai Santa Fe will not. In spite of being a common sight, it still stands proud – it must be a Jeep thing…
- Contrary to a few competitors, Jeep provides an enormous amount of options and ways to configure your Grand Cherokee your way.
- Once more, despite its wrinkles, it still handles and rides with poise and comfort.
- It still offers one of the largest cabins in the category and 1,000 litres of boot space.
Why you should not buy a 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee:
- The Grand Cherokee remains the most expensive in this segment. As well, it lacks features and tech bits that others include for far less money.
- No matter which engine you select, real-world fuel consumption will be greater than all the others.
- Reliability remains questionable even though the 4th generation Grand Cherokee is creeping up on 10 years of production with few changes.
- If modern dashboard layouts with floating screens and multiple tiered switchgear is your thing, the Jeep is not for you.
- Although the Jeep Grand Cherokee is refined, it still behaves and drives like a larger, heavy truck. If you prefer a more car-like driving experience, consider the Ford Edge or Santa Fe.
It seems clear to us that if true truck capabilities are a need, you still have no other option than a Jeep Grand Cherokee.
The Blazer may look the part but it’s nothing more a tall car with an attitude. Don’t get us wrong; it happens to be our favorite in the segment. Meanwhile, the Honda Passport has enough boot space to park a Chevy Spark or Honda Fit but it too is a soft-roader with serious on-road credentials.
If sensibility was to prevail, yes, we purchase a Chevy Blazer however should it falter, Jeep would get our money. There are no less than 11 versions of the Grand Cherokee to select from including the new Limited X which is mid-range kit-wise but with SRT aspirations. With a few options but without the 5.7-litre HEMI, our tester retailed for $63,000. That’s lots of cash, not that anyone uses the stuff anymore…
As I’m about to submit this story, Jeep is furiously throwing money at potential buyers. Depending on your selected trim and options, there are rebates of up to $10,500 to be had! Even so, our Walnut Brown Overland with HEMI and off-road adventure group still goes for just under $58k, destination charge included.
We wouldn’t regret it for a second… We’d just have to remind ourselves that our dream Green SRT with 3-season tires, red seat belts and high performance brakes required $18,000 more…