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Cherokee (XJs) and Comanche (MJs)
The ’84-’01 Cherokee and the ’86-’92 Comanche are great wheeling Jeeps right off the lot, and the aftermarket has really started to support these models in the last couple of years. The 4.0L engine, available in ’87-and-later Comanches and Cherokees (try to hold out for a ’90-or-later if you can) is your best choice for a powerplant. Look for ’96-and-up Cherokees with reverse-rotation Dana 30 front axles with 297 series U-joints (same size as the Dana 44) and check for Comanches with a Dana 44 rear axle instead of the 35C. Buy the latest model your budget allows, but don’t worry if you can’t get exactly the one you want because there is huge parts interchangeability amongst the product line, and you can always swap parts later.

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