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2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4X4 - Review By John Heilig

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By John Heilig
Senior Editor and Bureau Chief
Mid-Atlantic Bureau
The Auto Channel

REVIEWED MODEL: 2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4X4
ENGINE: 3.2-liter V6
TRANSMISSION: 9-speed automatic
HORSEPOWER/TORQUE: 271 hp @ 6,500 rpm/239 lb.-ft. @ 4,400 rpm
WHEELBASE: 109.6 in.
LENGTH X WIDTH X HEIGHT: 183.1 x 73.2 x 66.2 in.
TIRES: P235/50R19 All Season
CARGO CAPACITY: 25.8/54.7 cu. ft. (rear seats up/down)
CURB WEIGHT: 3,960 lbs.
COMPETITIVE CLASS:  Buick Encore, Ford Escape, Kia Sportage
STICKER: $41,620 (includes $1,495 delivery, $5,680 options)
BOTTOM LINE: The Jeep Cherokee offers a quiet ride plus all the benefits of a Jeep undercarriage.

There are two “Cherokees” in Jeep’s lineup, the more basic Cherokee and the more luxurious Grand Cherokee. So I admit I was a bit surprised by the “Just” Cherokee’s generally quiet operation under all loads. Let’s face it, “Just” Cherokee is an SUV, and not a luxury SUV like it’s bigger brother. But the 3.2-liter V6 under the hood of the Cherokee is as quiet as a luxury sedan. 

But that’s not to say it’s a puny V6. There are 271 ponies under the hood and they pull the Cherokee along at a good clip. Seems like the best of both worlds, doesn’t it?

This is a Jeep, and off-road capability is in its DNA. The Cherokee has Selec-Terrain with settings for Auto, Snow, Sport and Sand/Mud. In our part of the world we only (Hah! Only, he says) had hurricane quality rain and hail during the week we drove the Cherokee. Naturally, the Cherokee handled it all with aplomb. 

Overall ride quality is good, although I’ll admit I’m swayed by a quiet ride. Cherokee is short enough to maneuver into and out of parking spaces easily. There’s a slight tendency to lean on hard cornering, but it isn’t bad. 

Front seats are comfortable with good side support for off-roading. Our tester had powered seats that helped us find a good comfort level. In addition, the seats were heated and ventilated, with the controls part of the UConnect screen. Again, our tester had a clear 8.8-inch screen with all the usual choices. 

Rear seats have good legroom, plus enough room and a flat floor to make center seating less uncomfortable.

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The instrument panel is clear, with a central digital speedometer flanked by a round analog tachometer and speedometer. The information screen digital speedometer is one of 10 choices, including fuel economy and vehicle diagnostics.

In between the front seats is a two-level console/arm rest with USB and 12-volt outlets inside. There’s also a nice 3-inch deep cubby on top of the dash that proved to be ideal for holding phones and keys.

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The “U” in SUV is for Utility, and besides the Cherokee’s off-road capability (that’s the “S”) there is cargo capacity for a ton of stuff. We were exiting a big box store when the rain hit. I could hide under the lift gate while I unloaded the cart in the cargo area in front of the store, then a quick jog got the cart back without too much wetness. The hail hit us on the way home, and fortunately ended by the time we got there.

The tailgate is powered either by the fob or a switch on the dash. A well-concealed button inside the cargo area lowers the tailgate.

Our tester also had a large sunroof with a powered front and fixed rear that allowed us to watch the weather assaulting us.

Overall, the Jeep “Just” Cherokee is a fine SUV with all the capabilities of a larger SUV, with the advantage of a quiet, relatively smooth ride.

(c) 2019 The Auto Page Syndicate