2019 Jeep Cherokee Overland 4X4 new car reviews

The Jeep Cherokee has been an SUV stalwart since before we knew what those three letters really meant. Back then, it was just the default SUV.
Fast-forward all those decades and all those new competitors, and the Cherokee is still with us. Sure, it’s grown and changed with the times, but the lineage is still there. And for 2019, the Cherokee has a new party trick under its hood: an all-new, 2.0-liter turbo engine. Having only two liters to work with doesn’t mean wimpy performance, though, as it produces 270 horsepower along with 295 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s sure to be the life of the party.

Fancy yourself as more a wallflower? Jeep will happily sell you a more traditional powerplant, the 3.2-liter V6. It offers just 271 horsepower and 239 lb.-ft. of torque, though. Gone are the days of bigger engine offerings having the most power. And if you aren’t a fan of parties at all, Jeep still offers the venerable 2.4-liter. Regardless of your thoughts on parties, all engines come with Jeep’s nine-speed transmission.

As far as fuel economy is concerned, the 2.0-liter turbo returns the best numbers. The 2.0 liter’s advantage is especially noticeable against the V6, which requires mid-grade. The 2.0 liter happily sips regular.

And just like its predecessors, the new Cherokee comes in two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive flavors, with the Trailhawk being this generation’s Trail Rated offering. Time has moved on, but a Jeep is still a Jeep.

We tested the rather upmarket Overland 4x4 version fitted with the 2.0 turbo engine. Where the Cherokee line starts at just north of $25,000, ours stickered at $40,715.

Other staff views

David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

This felt more refined than I expected. The doors closed with a reassuring thud, the switches felt fine, and the interior appointments seemed appropriate for its class. If this sounds like I’m damning it with faint praise, I guess I expected this to feel more like a Wrangler–but it doesn’t. It’s right on par for today’s SUV class.

High points? That new 2.0-liter engine pulls nicely, especially when in Sport mode. If anything, I wish there was a way to have that be the default setting. The modes are controlled by a meaty, rubber-ringed knob.

The nine-speed automatic also held up its end of the bargain–and, again, seemed happier in the Sport mode. And speaking of the gearbox, it’s controlled by a traditional, console-mounted PRNDL.

The size is pretty good, too. It’s easy to park, while outward visibility is quite good. Props for the traditional, analog gauges, too.

One note: a bit more engine note than expected through the firewall.

Oh, wait, one more note after that: The available Velvet Red Pearl-Coat Paint looks stunning.

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Comments
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pinchvalve
pinchvalve MegaDork
4/3/19 9:00 a.m.

While $40K sounds like a lot for a Cherokee at first blush, the Grand Cherokee-sized SUVs start about there for base models, so it fits nicely in the size/price tier. I'm betting a maxed out Renegade hits $30k

Nugi
Nugi Reader
4/3/19 9:08 a.m.

Its a bit, dare i say, early 2000s subaru outback on steroids looking, but in a good way. Happy to see the pointless plastic aggression endemic to modern cars toned down on an suv. 

Agreed the pricing is reasonable, but the 2.4l comment was out of line. And I am not an FCA fan. Nice write up although as a certified internet bench racer, I want my weight figures next to HP so I dont have to google, or even read the whole article before commenting on how my lifted miata is superior in every way (except torque.)

 

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