Ain't No Mountain High Enough
The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee climbs in on- and off-road ability
Jeeps have a reputation for being able to take the road less traveled, and the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee follows in that tradition.
Although the newest Grand Cherokee shares some similarities with the current model, the 2014 is enhanced with an eight-speed automatic transmission and the option for a diesel engine.
Buyers planning to tow trailers should consider the new diesel engine, which can tow up to 7,400 pounds. The diesel option, available on the new Summit trim level, also has the best fuel economy of all Grand Cherokee models: up to 30 mpg on the highway for the 4x2. However, opting for the Summit trim level and diesel engine means a $5,000 price increase over the closest trim level. The Grand Cherokee also improves its rock-crawling capabilities with a hill-ascent control feature.
The Grand Cherokee is remarkably car-like for an SUV of this size, and its improvements translate to an even better on-road performance. Buyers who remember earlier models as having a harsh ride will be impressed by this version’s refined suspension and excellent steering response.
Pricing straddles value and luxury, with the base Laredo 4x2 trim level starting at $28,795 and the Summit 4x4 priced from $50,995. The base V-6 engine offers the best value, with fuel economy reaching 25 mpg on the highway. Although the base engine lacks the brute force of the Hemi V-8 (available as an upgrade), its power is more than adequate for city driving.
Attention to Detail
Jeep continues to augment the fit and finish throughout all the Grand Cherokee’s trim levels, correcting what had for many years been the brand’s Achilles’ heel. The 2014 is stylish and well-constructed. Those looking for an SUV capable of going off the grid should consider the new Jeep Grand Cherokee.
NINA RUSSIN has been writing about the auto industry for 25 years.
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Price as Tested:$31,285
Fuel economy:17 mpg city
25 mpg highway
- True off-road capability
- Diesel engine with ample power
- Transmission hunts to find gears
- Diesel engine available on upper trim levels