Jeep has unveiled its updated Grand Cherokee range, which will go on sale in Australia this month.
Headlining the changes is the arrival of the rugged Trailhawk off-roading variant, which will sit between the Overland and Limited in the diesel line-up at $74,000 plus on roads.
Many variants’ prices have remained the same, while those which have changed have risen a minor $500-$1000.
The range starts at $47,500 for the two-wheel-drive petrol Laredo and peaks at $91,000 for the barnstorming SRT.
The Summit variant has been discontinued.
The Trailhawk has a 3.0-litre 3.0-litre V6 turbo-diesel and, like all variants, has an eight-speed automatic transmission. It has Jeep’s Quadra-Drive II 4×4 system, an electronic limited-slip rear differential for even greater traction. It also gets a unique tune for the Quadra-Lift air suspension, which improves wheel articulation and increases ground clearance to 260mm — the most ever in a Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Other features to help distinguish it from its stablemates include four underbody skid plates, red front tow hooks and a distinctive matt black bonnet decal and grey mirrors and grille.
The Trailhawk also has new Offroad Pages housed within the 8.4-inch Uconnect touch screen, as do the other variants except the SRT, which has SRT Performance Pages.
Three engines are once again available. The 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 petrol has seen its power bumped up to 213kW and fuel economy improved by four per cent, the latter thanks to a new auto stop/start system.
The 3.0-litre V6 turbo-diesel and the SRT’s 6.4-litre Hemi V8 remain unchanged. The towing capability is still 3500kg.
Other upgrades include an electric power-steering system and a new transmission for the 4×2 petrol and the diesel aimed to be more durable.
Speaking of which, the new Grand Cherokee range comes with Jeep’s “There and Back Guarantee”, which includes a transferable five-year warranty, lifetime roadside assistance and capped- price servicing.
Externally, the main changes are a new grille, headlamps, front fascia and LED fog lamps.
Inside, there is a new gear selector which Jeep says is “more intuitive to use”. The brand got some unwanted negative publicity when Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin died last year after being pinned against a wall by his car. The former joystick-like lever made it hard to tell if the vehicle was in park, drive, reverse or neutral mode.
Elsewhere, an acoustic windscreen and front door glass should enhance refinement, while safety updates include lane- departure warning and park assist.
“The updated Grand Cherokee range is not only more refined on-road and more capable off-road, we’ve bolstered its safety credentials and made it even better value for money,” Jeep Australia director Guillaume Drelon said.
“On top of all that, the arrival of the new Trailhawk model, with its heightened off-road abilities, is particularly exciting for Australia, a nation whose core values resonate strongly with Jeep’s love of freedom and adventure.”