have always been fun to drive. That's why I write, to have fun
on the road. This all new re-designed Grand Cherokee Limited is
as loaded as it gets. The new design is slightly larger with
more room inside, but hasn't lost the sharp looks or off-road
ability it's famous for. The Grand Cherokee has many off road
controls like Land Rover and other European SUV's with mud , snow, rock,
and sport settings, as seen in
the picture right.
This controls height, firmness, sway for road
midsize SUV is 4 wheel independent air suspension, with large stabilizers,
well, like a car. Capable towing for the Featherlite 2 horse trailer
I towed. Telescoping steering wheel gets extra points and the seat goes far enough down for a
cowboy hat. For my laptop a 115volt
outlet and the mirrors tilt down in reverse. I don't know what
else you could add to the Jeep.
With air ride, hill decent, electronic
stability control, backup camera, hill start assist, trailer
sway damping, remote start, rain-sensitive windshield wipers,
heated seats all around, my wife's favorite option, Garmin navigation, Auto
dimming, auto lights, etc. it's very capable and
comfortable. Push button start, you can keep the key in
your pocket. Fun to drive, who wants to make payments on a
vehicle that is boring.
Super moon roof
above, it's twins, front is a power moonroof, rear covers both rows of
seats, great in the mountains, you can see the mountain goats.
Cherokee is narrow for off road, but needs an option for trailer
mirrors. The mirrors are adequate for 6' trailer but not a
7' trailer. Select the terrain rotary dial and the 4 corner airbag system
will adjust from 8.1 in to 10.7 in, if you have the air bags set
high for off-road, it will automatically lower the Jeep when you
go to payment and highway speeds. Put the dial in "Park" mode
and it lowers more for loading.
The Grand Cherokee has always
had impressive approach and departure angles that get you
off-road without dragging anything. Small, makes it
capable off-road. Not made for the big boys, my knee touching
the center console, other knee touching the door. Not a road
trip car for fat boys. I adjusted seat and mirrors often, auto
off, but things seam to move, probably from my big legs flexing
and hitting buttons. With the air bag suspension, the Jeep takes
bumps well, doesn't float and has little sway. I hope the big
cheese at Ram reads how nice air bag suspension is and commits
to using air bags in the future Heavy Duty Rams (Dodge trucks.)
points for a cowboy hat fitting with a 4 in. brim, 4 in. crown even with a double moonroof.
It's hard to find a truck you can wear a hat it. Windows have a green coating that you only see at
night to prevent glare.
The Bi-Xenon auto leveling
headlights add to the safety of seeing what 4 legged friends are
grazing the side of the road. Audio buttons on the
backside of steering wheel for fiddling with radio are
they label the 5.7L V-8 MDS as a Hemi? It doesn't say Hemi in the Morony
window sticker. Is it a Hemi, or is Fiat planning on dropping
the Hemi name except for in Ram trucks? The 5.7L V-8 is a MDS so it can shut off 1/2 the cylinders
to save fuel. On the Ram trucks, they still brag about having a
Hemi and label them that way, my guess is the Chrysler side of the company is setting us
up for the Fiat Pentastar engines that are coming.
driving produced 22 mpg with Hemi V-8 at 70 mph with cruise
control. The Cherokee is fast off the line,
not as fast in lane changes. Towing the Featherlite horse
trailer, 12 mpg in mountains in the
wind on I-25. In Tow mode and MDS off. As a midsize SUV, weight
distributing hitch is recommended, in the mountains with 40 mph side wind making
the trailer whip some, but less than towing
the same trailer with a Toyota Sequoia.
Trail Rated Limited
Grand Cherokee, hill decent option on 12 % grade with trailer
holding my speed. it does work. On hills, the tranny shifted
often, I put it in
Tow Mode, then it straighten out. I was trying to not use Tow Mode to
save fuel, but with a trailer you're better off to use Tow Mode.
The stats: 2011 Grand Cherokee Limited
4x4 $43,145, includes Off Road Adventure II Package $1655 and
5.7L V8 MDS VVT engine $1495 producing 360 hp 390 torque. EPA
fuel mileage 13 city, 19 highway.