Jeep’s land-barge tidies its image for 2017, and replaces that horrid gear selector.
The 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee, the flagship SUV from the iconic American brand, has finally arrived on Australian shores, finally addressing issues that existed with the outgoing model while building on the strengths it already had.
The new model year sees minor aesthetic changes to the exterior. The eagle-eyed amongst you would have noticed a slimmer front grille (we didn’t immediately see that, either), new LED fog-lights, new alloy wheel designs, and six new paint finishes. The cabin sees a new gear selector (finally), and cabin glass that supposedly enhances refinement.
Safety tech has also seen additions for the new model year. There’s lane departure warning and a parking assistance for the highest models (and optional elsewhere). A new rear trailer hitch camera system also features here. The engine range soldiers on almost completely unchanged, with the 3.6-litre V6 petrol, 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel, and 6.4-litre HEMI V8 still present and correct. The Pentastar petrol V6 sees a minor power bump, now producing 213kW, while reducing fuel economy by 4% thanks to a stop/start system.
The new model year also brings with it a new ‘Trailhawk’ trim line, which like the smaller Cherokee Trailhawk, puts emphasis on out-and-out off-road ability for the most demanding adventurers. Prices for the 2017 Grand Cherokee start at $47,500 for the rear-wheel drive entry-level Laredo with its petrol V6, claiming up steadily until the $91,000 commanded by the Grand Cherokee SRT and its biblical V8 engine.
Onto the hotly-anticipated Trailhawk. Prices start at $74,000 (before ORCs), and sees motivation come exclusively from the 3.0-litre turbodiesel V6, endowing it with 184kW & 570Nm. All that grunt goes through all-four wheels (obviously) through an eight-speed automatic gearbox. The Trailhawk packs Jeep’s Quadra-Drive II 4x4 system (like Land Rover’s ‘Terrain Response’) which tailors aspects of the drive to work best with the surface beneath the wheels.
The Trailhawk also gets Quadra-Lift air suspension as standard, capable of lifting ground clearance to a lofty 260mm. And to further the Trailhawk’s claim as an off-roader, the underbody gets four skid plates, the nose gets two red tow-hooks, a black bonnet decal, and a ‘Neutral Grey’ finish on the mirrors and the grille.
Prices are up $500-$1000 across the range, which is as below:
Laredo V6 RWD – $47,500
Laredo V6 4×4 – $52,500
Laredo TDV6 4×4 – $59,000
Limited V6 4×4 – $62,500
Limited TDV6 4×4 – $69,000
Trailhawk TDV6 4×4 – $74,000
Overland TDV6 4×4 – $80,000
SRT V8 4×4 – $91,000
All new Grand Cherokees will be covered by the brand’s ‘There & Back’ 5-year warranty, which also throws in lifetime roadside assistance and capped-price servicing costs.