Jeep Cherokee revised

Jeep has made a number of revisions to its Cherokee, including a new front end and a freshened interior.

The new Jeep Cherokee is given a freshened exterior design with new front fascia, grille, fog lamps, wheel arches, bodyside mouldings and new standard roof-rack rails and wheels.

The Jeep Cherokee Sport comes with a painted body-colour front grille and a front bumper with “twin-tube” appearance, while the Cherokee Limited has a more upmarket treatment with chrome grille, body-colour painted fascias and wheel arches and five-spoke alloy wheels. Both the bodyside moulding and the roof-rack rails are chrome finished.

The restyled Jeep Cherokee Renegade, not currently available in the UK, features a more rugged, classic Jeep appearance, with a new flatter bonnet and taller grille, plus off-road fog lamps, tail lamp guards, “bolted-on” wheel arches and large six-spoke alloy wheels. The Renegade also features standard tow hooks, three skid plates (under the transfer case, fuel tank and front suspension) and an optional overhead light bar. Visual enhancements that further distinguish the Renegade include roof-rack rails, functional side rock rails and skid plate appliqué below the front bumper, all painted a bright silver.

All Jeep Cherokee models have a wider appearance thanks to completely re-designed front grille, front fascia and corner fenders that follow the sweeping line of the wheel arches and mount the park/turn lamps in a higher location. This also results in a broader look, which retains its famous Jeep seven-slot grille, and now has room to accommodate a fog lamp below each headlamp.

In addition, all models have new, more protruding side sills and a crisper bodyside moulding.

Two new pearl-coat exterior colours, Dark Khaki and Deep Beryl Green, are available on all models.

All Jeep Cherokee models feature interior changes to enhance their comfort, practicality and appearance. They have a lighter coloured trim to highlight interior space, while the centre stack bezel and gear selector bezel are finished in Satin Silver. Two new interior colours, Medium Slate and Khaki, are available on all models, while the Limited can also be ordered in Khaki/Light Graystone leather or Slate Gray/Light Slate Gray leather.

New seats use dual-density foam, making them more comfortable and provide improved lumbar support. They also have a more contemporary look with new contours, sew styles and fabrics, including a “diamond-plate inspired” seat fabric. Front seats have cushions which are 5 mm (0.2 in.) longer and seat inserts that are 10 mm (0.4 in.) wider to accommodate larger occupants. The backrest is wider at shoulder height to ensure occupants do not feel “squeezed.”

Alterations to the profile of both the rear cushion and backrest have reduced the rear seat-fold angle, providing a flatter load floor for increased utility and improved cargo storage. The backrest and cushion split one-third/two-thirds and when folded.

For the first time, the Cherokee offers a navigation radio available factory-installed or as an aftermarket accessory. This RB3 navigation radio system for European customers contains a navigation computer with 12.4 cm (4.9-in.) diagonal full-colour display, tuner and CD player all in one unit. Features include turn-by-turn route guidance navigation with voice instruction, seven different user languages, automatic re-route calculation and memory to store 50 custom user destinations.

Also available is the UConnect hands-free communication system. Available as an aftermarket accessory, the system uses Bluetooth technology to provide wireless communication between the driver’s compatible mobile phone and the vehicle’s on-board audio receiver. Advanced voice recognition technology controls the UConnect operation, and incoming calls are broadcast through the vehicle’s audio speakers.

New instrument cluster graphics – white letters on a grey background – provide greater visibility at twilight and dusk and give a more refined look. Chromed bezels distinguish the Limited models from the Sport.

Mounted on the centre stack, new heating/ventilation/air conditioning controls retain three rotary dials, but have separate AC and heated rear window select buttons.

On both manual and automatic transmission models, the power window switches have been relocated forwards to a near-horizontal placement just behind the gear selector.

The revised 2.8-litre common-rail diesel (CRD) engine uses a variable geometry turbocharger (VGT) and delivers nine per cent more power (now 163hp at 3,800rpm) and 11 per cent more torque (now 295 lb/ft at 1,800 rpm) as compared to the previous 2.8-litre engine, while bringing many noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) improvements.

The new 2.8 VGT CRD engine is mated as standard to a new NSG370 six-speed manual gearbox. Made in Germany, with hard-finished gears for improved gear-change quality and better NVH, this unit has a lower first gear for quicker take-off from standstill and brisker initial acceleration and a higher top (sixth) gear for reduced revs, lower noise and better fuel economy when cruising at speed.

Optional for this engine is the 545RFE five-speed automatic transmission, shared with the Jeep Grand Cherokee, and improvements include quieter operation when shifting between Park and Drive and the fitting of a turbine damper to enhance NVH performance.

The existing 3.7-litre V6 features numerous improvements that enhance fuel economy, improve NHV and reduce operating noise, especially at idle. Maximum power for this engine is 204 hp at 5,200 rpm, while 226 lb/ft of torque is generated at 3,700 rpm.

The standard transmission for the 3.7L engine is the 42RLE four-speed automatic transmission, which now has automatic variable line pressure adjustment to enhance fuel economy.

The 2.4-litre petrol models now use a new NSG370 six-speed manual gearbox.