After being mothballed for some time, Jeep is finally releasing an all-new Cherokee and it's nothing like its predecessor. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee is available with a class-first nine-speed automatic transmission that Jeep says helps it deliver up to a 45 percent improvement in fuel economy over the outgoing Liberty it's replacing, which will no doubt allow you to go on longer trips off the beaten path. Fuel economy is great and all, but it's nothing if you can't move out of your own way. This doesn't look to be an issue for the Cherokee since it's available with Chrysler's 271 horsepower Pentastar V6 with 239 pound feet of torque that should help it power through the trails with ease. If fuel economy is more what you're after, a 2.4-liter MultiAir2 Tigershark 4-cylinder is standard that produces 184 horsepower and 171 pound feet of torque while delivering 31 mpg highway and an overall range of almost 500 miles.
The 2014 Jeep Cherokee also has excellent all-weather capability and is available in three configurations of four wheel drive; Jeep Active Drive I with a one-speed Power Transfer Unit, Jeep Active Drive II with a two-speed Power Transfer Unit and low range, and Jeep Active Drive Lock with a two-speed Power Transfer Unit, low range and locking rear differential. All three systems feature an industry first rear-axle disconnect that results in reduced energy loss when 4x4 capability isn't needed, yielding a higher fuel efficiency. One of the cool things is that the new Cherokee features a Jeep Select-Terrain system with up to five selectable modes that deliver the best four-wheel-drive performance for the selected road or weather condition. You can choose between Auto, Snow, Sport, Sand/Mud, and Rock depending on what terrain you're wheeling through at the time.
"With the all-new Jeep Cherokee we've engineered several groundbreaking attributes that will redefine how consumers think about mid-size SUVs," said Chrysler's C and D segment vehicle line exec Chris Barman in a statement announcing the new Cherokee. "Innovative new 4x4 systems with rear-axle disconnect ensure the new Cherokee is the most capable mid-size SUV while delivering a superior on-road driving experience and vastly improved fuel economy of up to 31 mpg."
The all-new 2014 Jeep Cherokee was engineered to be the most capable mid-size sport-utility vehicle while providing premium on-road driving dynamics and improved fuel economy. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee has a 56:1 crawl ratio for the 2.4-liter MultiAir2 Tigershark I-4, while the Pentastar V6 gets a 47.8:1 crawl ratio to help it climb up and over obstacles on the trail. If you need to hook up a small trailer, Jeep says the 2014 Jeep Cherokee Pentastar V6 can tow up to 4,500 pounds without a problem.
If you're the type of person that can't wait to hit the trails, the all-new 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk is built specifically to handle the rigors of off-road action. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk features a distinctive, aggressive look, backed up by Jeep Trail Rated hardware, for the most capable Jeep Cherokee model and as well as what Jeep's billing as the most capable mid-size SUV in the segment. The Trailhawk includes as standard equipment aggressive approach and departure angles, a one-inch factory lift, Jeep Active Drive Lock with locking rear differential, skid plates and signature red tow hooks. The locking rear differential is selectable in any low range terrain mode, but will lock automatically when in certain modes, such as "Rock," to maximize tractive effort at the tire patch that can support it.
The Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk boasts an approach angle of 29.8 degrees as well as a departure angle of 32.1 degrees and a breakover angle of 23.3 degrees. The Cherokee Trailhawk also has a running ground clearance of 8.7 inches. One thing's for sure, the Cherokee is back and this time it's got a whole new bag of tricks!