Jeep has just launched its 5th Cherokee model locally. With the model designation KL, it replaces the previous model, the KK. This model is all new, with a ton of improvements over its predecessor. The 3.2 Pentastar engine is all new, making a healthy 200kw and 315nm, followed by the baby engine, the “Tigershark” 2.4, making 130kw and 229nm. The interior is also a huge step up over previous models and this is due to interior mastermind Klaus Busse, who decided to remodel it from the ground up, taking inspiration from landscapes all over the world. There are about a million and four (well almost) different interior combinations you can choose from internationally. It really is a quality interior and a huge step up from its bland older brother, the KK.
The 3.2 engine is a responsive engine, which loves to rev. It’s mated to a 9 speed automatic transmission and it always seems to be in the right gear. There is also no shortage of overtaking power; all you need to do is floor the loud pedal and off she goes, little to no fuss really. The biggest thing that impressed me was the fuel consumption. Big v6 Jeeps often have been rather heavy on the pocket and I expected it to be from the start. The 3.2 has changed my mindset proving that, if driven in an economical way, the 3.2 can reach figures as low as 9l/100km and, if you really push it, 8.4l/100. Our combined cycle, however, ended on 11.2l1/100km, which is still fantastic. All the vehicles feature an array of safety equipment with full wrap-around curtain airbags.
There are 3 models available; the front wheel drive version, which is available in 2.4 longitude (cloth seats), the 3.2 limited (leather) and the all-wheel drive 3.2 limited, with Active Drive (Auto/Sport/Snow/Mud Modes) and the 3.2 Trailhawk with Active Drive Lock. While the all-wheel drive variant is still phenomenally capable, it lacks the low range 56:1 crawl ratio of the Trailhawk. The Trailhawk is also fitted with a rear locker, hill ascent and hill descent control. Above that, the Trailhawk also features a fancy 1 inch suspension lift over the regular Cherokee. Ground clearance is 185mm for the front wheel drive, 200mm for the all-wheel drive and 224mm for the Trailhawk. The Trailhawk will also forge water at up to 508mm. Approach angle for the Trailhawk is 29.9” and 32.1” on departure. According to Jeep, the Trailhawk could be more capable in certain situations than the Wrangler. It also completed the Rubicon trail and Maob’s Hell’s Revenge.
The Cherokee has just made buying your next SUV really hard. It has upped its game so much from the previous model that it might even steal sales from the Grand Cherokee. Only time will tell in seeing how people adapt to the completely new front end, which grows on you. I promise.
- Jeep Cherokee 2.4l Longitude FWD – R479,990.00
- Jeep Cherokee 3.2l Limited FWD – R505,990.00
- Jeep Cherokee 3.2l Limited AWD – R563,990.00
- Jeep Cherokee 3.2l Trailhawk 4WD – R607,990.00