In America, the Grand Cherokee is not just popular: it received the Bestseller title several times. It outperforms its competitors with technical equipment and exterior. In 2021, after a decade of resting on its laurels, the Grand Cherokee underwent a complete redesign. But this summer, many buyers were surprised that Jeep brand dealers continue to sell the previous generation of the SUV, known as the WK series, which is no different from those sold in any used Jeep dealership in Indianapolis.
Grand Cherokee Restyling: Competition with Itself
The Grand Cherokee model is a long-liver, even by the standards of Jeep. Its sales began in the summer of 2010, and this SUV is a distant relative of the second-generation Mercedes ML.
The next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee has been designed and engineered to offer its owners an impressive combination of legendary off-road capability, premium styling, the highest quality interior and exterior, and state-of-the-art safety technology. The result is the 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L, available for the first time in a six or seven-seat configuration. At the heart of the new Grand Cherokee is the Giorgio platform from fellow alliance partners Alfa Romeo. This does not mean that the model has become pop and incapable of overcoming off-road. The technology is the same, but the essence of the new platform is an increase in rigidity and the ability to install new electronics, including assistance and safety systems. For example, the Trailhawk version now has off-road cruise control and large displays in front of the eyes of the driver and all passengers.
In the US, the cheapest version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee is rear-wheel drive. By tradition, the Jeep has several options for all-wheel drive transmission: Quadra-Trac I with a front wheel coupling, Quadra-Trac II with a transfer case, and Quadra-Drive II, supplemented by a rear differential lock. Each has five Selec-Terrain control modes. Electronics allow selecting driving modes for different road and off-road conditions: Sport, Rocks, Snow, Mud / Sand.
The Grand Cherokee also received a rechargeable hybrid 4xe version, in which three two-liter engines, a starter-generator, and an electric motor give out 381 hp. and 637 Nm. The traction battery with a capacity of 17 kWh allows moving in electric mode up to 25 miles. Moreover, the electronics are reliably protected from water and off-road, so the Grand Cherokee Trailhawk can also be a hybrid.
Jeep has postponed the debut of the new Grand Cherokee due to the coronavirus pandemic. The premiere was originally scheduled for the Detroit Auto Show in June 2020, but all public events were canceled by the authorities. Then the next generation model was going to be shown in the fall, but these plans were not destined to come true: the Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV changed generation only in 2021. However, the previous SUV version, the WK, is still in production.
Initially, a variety of engines offered for the WK included gasoline V6 and V8, as well as three-liter diesel engines. Now buyers are left with no choice: only a 3.6-liter atmospheric V6 of the Pentastar series with a power of just under 300 hp. It is also combined with a non-alternative eight-speed automatic. But the drive can be both FWD and RWD.
By comparison, the new Grand Cherokee is powered by either the same V6 or V8 engines, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain based on a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.
The manufacturer assures that the new platform and aerodynamic body shapes have improved the dynamics of the model, optimizing safety, reliability, and significantly reducing weight, noise, vibration, and shaking. But not all fans of the brand have accepted the new generation model. It is also at least $2,000 more expensive than the previous one. How long the old Grand Cherokee, to which the automaker added the letters WK on the official website, will remain on sale is not reported, but it is expected that it may be left next year.
Experts from the Indy Auto Man car dealership assure, that adherents of the old style will lose nothing if they prefer to buy a used Jeep in Indiana rather than a new Grand Cherokee WK, given the unprecedented quality and durability of these cars. For the money the manufacturer wants for the initial version, the chances are high to get a top trim in just-like-new condition from a reliable used car dealer.