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The Jeep Cherokee Classic, one of the most beloved Jeeps of all time was retired in favor of the Jeep Liberty, which bowed as a 2002 model. Curvier than the traditional Cherokee, the Liberty appealed to a broader audience-especially female buyers-but Jeep purists railed against the softer lines. Jeep responded in 2008 with the second generation Liberty, a more traditionally styled Jeep. The purists may have been satisfied, but sales figures weren’t even close to the first generation Liberty. So, the Liberty quietly slipped into oblivion in August 2012, and is now being replaced with the all-new Cherokee.
And boy, is this a radical departure from the Liberty. Also important, this is the first all-new Jeep since Fiat got their hands on Chrysler. I admit, I’ve always had a soft spot for Jeeps. They are quintessentially American, tough, and maybe even a little crude. I like those qualities, because it gives the Jeep character, personality. As a greying Gen-Xer who once pored over CJ-7 and Wagoneer brochures as a child, that’s romantic and all, but it doesn’t sell a lot of cars to the masses. If the Liberty looked like an old Jeep from the day it was new, the Jeep Cherokee is the exact opposite. This is like no Jeep ever seen before. Yes, the looks are polarizing, but to who? The old codgers?
The new Cherokee may be a risk, but it makes a styling statement, and points a new direction for Jeep. How buyers react is anyone’s guess. But here is what we do know. The Cherokee started production in Spring, and will be arriving in dealers this Fall. Buyers will have a choice of two or all-wheel drive. Four trim levels will be offered: the Sport, Latitude, Limited, and Trailhawk. All Cherokee’s come standard with a 2.4L four rated at 184hp, paired to a nine-speed (not a typo) automatic. With the exception of the base Sport, all other Cherokees also offer an optional 3.2L V-6, rated at 271hp.
The full line of the Cherokee family is described below. Note, all prices show that of the four cylinder, with 4×2. Four-wheel drive Cherokee’s will add $2,000.
Cherokee Sport: $22,995 USD
The base Cherokee comes standard with full power accessories, a 5″ touchscreen, Bluetooth, LED tail lights, and 17″ steel wheels.
Cherokee Latitude: $24,495
Likely to be the volume model, the Latitude adds exterior trim upgrades like body-colored exterior mirrors and chrome door handles, deep-tint windows, ambient interior lighting and 17″ alloys.
Cherokee Limited: $27,995
The top-spec Cherokee from a luxury standpoint, the Limited adds leather heated power seats, heated steering wheel, 18″ alloys. an 8.4″ touch screen, SiriusXM satellite radio, back-up camera, two-zone auto climate control, and an auto dimming rear view mirror.
Cherokee Trailhawk: $29.495
Or, to keep the Jeep purists happy. The Trailhawk is only available as a 4×4, and is the only Cherokee to wear Jeep’s badge of honor: Trail Rated. More aggressively styled with unique front and rear fascias, unique 17″ alloys, rugged interior trim, this Cherokee adds the off-road goodies Jeep fans demand. Add an increase of a 1″ ride height, tow hooks, skid plates, off-road suspension, heavy duty cooling, auxiliary transmission oil cooler, all-terrain tires, and Hill Ascent/Descent Control, the Trailhawk is there for the Jeep owner who demands his Jeep to be truly off-road ready, and to look the part.
For those who complain Jeep is going soft, relax. The Wrangler is still raw and rugged, and remains the face of the brand. The Garage has yet to review the revised 2014 Grand Cherokee, but we remain confident it still offers the same brawn and luxury as it always has. The reality is the outgoing Liberty was a dinosaur that, while being fully capable off-road, presented too many compromises that the average buyer was not willing to make when so many more refined alternatives were available. With current, if not controversial styling, greater fuel efficiency and reportedly vastly improved interior surroundings, the Cherokee could stand to reverse the Liberty’s steady sale slide. Stay tuned, as The Garage will review the new Cherokee.
Filed under: Car Buying, Crossover, Jeep, Off-Road
Love it or hate it, the 2014 Cherokee
is on its way to a Jeep
showroom near you this fall. Today, Chrysler
announced the different trim levels, features and pricing for its new compact utility with a starting price of $22,995 (*not including $995 for destination), which is $400 less than the 2012 Liberty
it ostensibly replaces.
Available in four trim levels - Sport, Latitude, Limited and Trailhawk - the new Cherokee will come standard with Chrysler's 2.4-liter Tigershark inline four-cylinder engine with the upper three levels offering the option of the company's 3.2-liter Pentastar V6. The base Sport is your typical entry-level model, featuring equipment including manual cloth seats and black exterior mirrors and door handles, but it also has a five-inch Uconnect media center, LED taillights and 10 standard airbags. Stepping up from the Sport model, Latitude and Limited trims bring increasing levels of luxury starting at $24,495 and $27,995, respectively. All three of these trims are front-wheel drive in standard configuration and offer varying versions of Jeep's Active Drive four-wheel-drive system.
The range-topping $29,495 Cherokee Trailhawk (shown above) comes standard with four-wheel drive and numerous upgrades to earn Jeep's Trail Rated fender badge. These changes include a unique design that adds an off-road suspension with taller ride height giving more aggressive approach and departure angles, underbody skid plates, distinguishing exterior design elements and a seven-inch, reconfigurable instrument gauge cluster similar to what it found in high-trim Dodge Dart
models. Scroll down
for a full breakdown of the 2014 Cherokee pricing and trim levels, and let us know what you think of the model's pricing and equipment in Comments.
Continue reading 2014 Jeep Cherokee starting price set at $22,995*
2014 Jeep Cherokee starting price set at $22,995* originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 10 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: SUV, Crossover, Jeep
Jeep's bold-faced new direction spearheaded by the 2014 Cherokee
is facing some teething issues. According to a report by the Detroit Free Press
, production start-up of the controversial new utility vehicle at its Toledo North facility is running about a month behind schedule "due to a wide range of issues." That's according to Mark Chernoby, senior vice president of engineering at Chrysler
Chernoby maintains that the issues being encountered aren't unusual for the launch of a new vehicle - particularly one with a new powertrain - and he downplayed the delay, telling Jeep
dealers that they "will have ample inventory of the midsize SUV by fall." Among the kinks being worked out? Calibrating the Cherokee's cutting-edge ZF nine-speed automatic transmission
and refining assembly line tasks to make the process more efficient.
Chrysler expects to start building retail-ready versions of the Cherokee around mid-June, with official sales slated to start in September.
2014 Jeep Cherokee facing production delay originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 17 May 2013 14:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: Classics, SUV, Jeep, Luxury, Off-Road
The Wagoneer got the SUV on the radar of buyers looking for something capable, comfortable and rugged.
Wagoneer was introduced 50 years ago, and it's that vehicle we have to thank for the herds of excellent crossovers and SUVs that make up our current automotive landscape. On a personal level, I have always loved the full-size Jeeps and their crisp Brooks Stevens styling, which aged well over their long tenure on the market. The SJs, as they're known among enthusiasts, were the Wagoneer and its two-door counterpart, the original Cherokee
. The Wagoneers had become true luxury vehicles by the end of their run, which stretched form late 1962 as a '63 model all the way to 1991, when they were offered exclusively under the Grand Wagoneer
At the end of the line in 1991, The New York Times
called the Grand Wagoneer "one of the last true gas guzzlers" as it eulogized the vehicle. It deserves more respect than that; the Wagoneer got the SUV on the radar of buyers looking for something capable, comfortable and rugged. People who could afford such luxuries seemed to understand its purpose. At the end of production, the average Grand Wagoneer buyer pulled in over $100,000 a year, and the Jeep often served as a second or third car. There is no denying that the Wagoneer invented the luxury SUV, years before the Range Rover
was ever offered for sale.
Continue reading Happy 50th birthday, Jeep Wagoneer
Happy 50th birthday, Jeep Wagoneer originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 02 May 2013 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: Plants/Manufacturing, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep
In 2011, Chrysler
announced a $72-million investment in its Toledo Machining Plant to modernize production of the eight- and nine-speed torque-converters for automatic transmissions made there. That upgrade work won't be finished until Q3 of this year, but Chrysler has already announced a further $19.6-million investment to increase production capacity for the nine-speeders.
The extra units will be necessary because the nine-speed transmission
they'll be mated to is going into three popular models: it will debut on the 2014 Jeep Cherokee
, then go into the Chrysler 200
and Dodge Dart
. The company predicted that this year alone it would sell 200,000 units equipped
with the nine-speed tranny, and it is spending some $374 million in addition to the investment in Toledo to upgrade production capacity for it.
The work attached to this new investment won't begin until Q3 of 2014, and it will be finished by the end of that year. There's a press release below
with all the details.
Continue reading Chrysler investing $20M in Toledo plant to support 9-speed auto production
Chrysler investing $20M in Toledo plant to support 9-speed auto production originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 28 Apr 2013 15:05:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: China, Plants/Manufacturing, Crossover, Jeep
Chinese buyers will get their first live look at the 2014 Jeep Cherokee
during the Shanghai Motor Show
, but CarNewsChina
is reporting that it will go by a different name - Ziyou Guan, which translates to "Liberty Light." The article states that our Jeep Liberty
was never sold in China, but the iconic XJ Cherokee was sold and produced there as the Qinuoji (a phonetic translation of Cherokee).
The new Jeep Liberty Light will be built alongside the Fiat Viaggio
(China's Fiat-badged version of the Dodge Dart
) at the Guangzhou-Fiat plant, and the two models will share the same powertrains: a 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder base engine paired to a five-speed manual or a dual-clutch transmission and a 2.4-liter four-cylinder (the base engine for the US-spec 2014 Cherokee) as an optional engine. It doesn't sound like the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 will be offered in China.
We'll be on hand when the new Jeep
debuts in Shanghai, so stay tuned to Autoblog
this Friday night and Saturday for our live coverage of the show.
2014 Jeep Cherokee will keep Liberty designation in China... sort of originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 17 Apr 2013 13:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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