Jeep Grand Cherokee Review: The Most Agreeable Jeep

Jeep Grand Cherokee Review: The Most Agreeable Jeep

James Wong
James Wong
03 Jul 2023
... it’s an impressive Jeep and does more justice to the generations of Grand Cherokee than the last model ever did.
What we like:
The most refined Jeep so far
Good build quality
Classy design inside and out
What we dislike:
Engine could be rough on load
Fuel consumption is high
More off-road biased than on-road

The new Grand Cherokee looks great. It’s large, has a grand presence and sits high and mighty on the road. In fact, it commands the attention of a BMW X7 or Range Rover, which is a huge battle won already.

There’s now a whiff of European refinement about it, no doubt influenced perhaps by the Italian and French co-owners of the brand. It’s not quite class-leading, but it’s a huge step-up from Jeeps we are used to from before.

Part of this filters through to the interior, for example. The cabin layout is tasteful and sensible, the infotainment is surprisingly user-friendly and there is little to fault its overall ergonomics. There’s an impressive amount of space and head clearance, though perhaps not as much as one might expect given the outward stature of the car. The button to activate the auto-boot is located at shoulder level, which is a thoughtful feature especially for a car that sits this high. And if you look closely enough, there are even little Jeeps imprinted on the Grand Cherokee’s various glass panels as a little delightful detail. Build quality is rather good, and there are no rattles or creaks at all during the drive. It feels pretty well put-together, down to how the doors close.

Being a Jeep, it is understandably geared towards doing a fabulous job off-road. Although we didn’t get to try anything as close to dune surfing, we got the car to some decent pitch and roll angles down a grassy hill, and the car made light work of it. There are several modes to pick from, namely: Auto (by default), Sand/Mud, Snow and Sport. It hints at a car that can do serious off-road adventures if called upon.

Some of this undoubtedly filters through to the on-road driving experience. There are some surprising moments that would catch the driver off-guard, like traction control kicking in on an innocent strip of tarmac downhill that I’d not normally get on any other road car, for example. Sometimes in a U-turn, you can feel the slight judders of the all-wheel drive system, too. But all this is rather mild. Ride quality is mostly agreeable but it can be described as somewhat blunt and perhaps more tuned for conquering terrain than managing the fine nuances of paved streets. The steering feels similarly dull too, perhaps intentionally tuned this way to rough it up on the outback.

The engine (shared with other members of the Stellantis group, like Alfa Romeo and Maserati) packs a punch on paper with 268 hp and 400 Nm and is surprisingly strong. It is paired with the gearbox which is quite competent, and is probably the most pleasing part of the whole drivetrain. There’s not a moment where you’d want more power in the Grand Cherokee. However, it seems rougher in the Jeep than it does in other iterations. It’s also no surprise that given the car’s size, fuel economy takes a hit - we averaged 6.8 km/l.

But the car’s overall refinement is worth mentioning, because this is probably the most luxurious Jeep ever to come across OneShift’s hands. I hesitate to say it’s a luxury car, but it comes close. If there is more sophistication to its damping and more feel to its steering, it’d make a more serious dent against its competitors’ sales. But as it is, it’s an impressive Jeep and does more justice to the generations of Grand Cherokee than the last model ever did.

Photos by New Gen Marketing


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