Once they change an icon, you discover instantly. The picture that’s completely ingrained in your thoughts is altered, typically for the higher, typically for the more severe. Which is why corporations don’t change icons a lot. In the event that they do, it’s normally small issues or issues you possibly can’t see beneath the pores and skin. “ALL NEW!” they shout, inflicting a twinge of panic in these of us that revere the icon, solely to breath a sigh of reduction after we see the icon nonetheless seems to be a lot because it did, a lot because it all the time has, a lot because it all the time will. When Jeep modified the Grand Cherokee, we sucked in our collective breath and hoped for the most effective.
Sure, it seems to be slightly totally different. The entrance grill is a bit more vertical and formal wanting. The entire entrance finish seems to be…cleaner. Smoother. The rear of the automotive has a detachable hardtop look. Frankly, we prefer it. There’s a touch of Land Rover styling language within the design, seemingly not by chance. Jeep has all the time sought slightly extra respect from its higher class clientele whereas holding it’s muddy work boots on. Nothing flawed with that. Better of each worlds. However what’s with the blue tow hooks? And the blue panel on the hood? What does that say? “4xe”. Hmmmm.
It’s an electrical.
I”m undecided about this. Jeep represents off-roading. HARDCORE off-roading to the nth diploma.
Electrical. Anyone is messing with the icon.
Deep breathes. Let’s give it an opportunity. Fiat-Chrysler has shocked us earlier than.
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk 4xe
Inside is a brand new inside. Not radically totally different however positively new. It seems to be luxurious. And sensible. Each sorts of sensible. Well designed and filled with sensible electronics that may outprocess most house computer systems. Lengthy gone is the T-handle shifter. A rotary knob now instructs the 8-speed automated transmission what to do. An assortment of switches and buttons means that you can customise the 4WD system to the terrain you’ll be tackling. That’s good. There’s a swaybar disconnect button to mechanically disconnect the bar for extra suspension journey when issues get furry on the paths. That’s reassuring. Trip-height adjustment lever. Good. To date it nonetheless appears fairly hardcore. The backseats are spacious and comfy, and there’s loads of cupboard space in the way in which again. Total, it’s a really snug inside. Not fairly Grand Wagoneer good, however you’re not carrying the Grand Wagoneer’s funds both.
On the left facet of the steering wheel is one other sequence of buttons. “Hybrid Mode – Electrical Mode – E-save Mode.” Ahhhh, okay. So it’s an electrical hybrid with the flexibility to run as a full electrical or a full gasoline motor (E-save). That’s not so radical as we feared.
The gasoline motor is a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder that makes 375hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. Which is spectacular out of a 2.0L engine. I’ll reduce to the chase and let you know that you just’re going to overlook the sound of the V8 however the rush and energy continues to be there. You simply have to regulate to slightly whooshing and slightly extra vibration. That’s doable.
In hybrid and electrical modes, the electrical motors quietly, seamlessly, and effortlessly do what they’re speculated to do, though the gasoline motor doesn’t appear to cost the waterproof battery pack when it’s working, like many hybrids do. Possibly I simply didn’t drive it sufficient – It obtained used as a commuter in my arms, nothing extra sadly. In actual fact, whereas we tried each mode, we principally left it in “Hybrid” and let the G-Cherokee do it’s factor.
And total we appreciated it, although there have been a couple of issues we needed to get used to. As an illustration, after we began it in hybrid mode, the electrics all got here to life with out the engine needing to fireside. Regular sufficient. However then we started to listen to dashing liquid behind the sprint. It took us some time to comprehend that the Grand Cherokee should must warmth and flow into coolant so as to present warmth to the inside as an alternative of utilizing electrical heaters. As soon as we figured that out, we weren’t as startled but it surely’s a sound that appears wildly misplaced in an electrical car of one thing on this worth vary. The drivetrain switching from electrical drive to gasoline drive wasn’t the smoothest expertise both. The transition felt tough and a bit unsettling.
However possibly we’re being too harsh, too nit-picky. What else have we pushed just lately on this worth vary with this sort of drivetrain? Most just lately, we drove a Volvo XC-60 hybrid. It was in the identical worth vary, with an analogous hybrid drivetrain. The XC-60 felt rather more refined all the way in which round and in addition felt extra partaking to drive than the comparatively numb Grand Cherokee. After all, that’s on paved roads. If I needed to traverse backcountry trails out West or cross Michigan’s higher peninsula by way of ORV trails, I’d really feel extra ready and in higher, extra succesful arms within the Jeep. I suppose it will depend on what your precedence is.
Whereas ours was a 2022 – we had been seemingly one of many final to expertise this fleet automotive – there aren’t many modifications between the 2022 and the 2023. The bottom worth was $62,485. As examined, our automotive got here in at $71,790. It had a ton of choices on it, together with the “Superior ProTech Group II” which incorporates “evening imaginative and prescient.” It’s a thermal imaging sort and it does an important job of serving to you see within the inky blackness of evening. Deer, opossums, and folks all stand out in sensible distinction to the background. As do brake discs, tires, and exhaust pipes on automobiles. The digital camera is constructed into the entrance grille and the show is within the instrument cluster between the speedometer and the tachometer.
We appreciated and had been happy with the Jeep Grand Cherokee total. We wished it had been a bit extra partaking to drive, but it surely’s extraordinarily succesful within the Sport and Utility fields. It will possibly go practically anyplace and do practically something, together with tow enormous hundreds, whilst you sit in consolation and watch the miles get chewed up by way of the massive panorama windshield. It does what you ask, stylishly and fairly capably, with out asking for a lot in return. And that’s the essence of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.