I recently did an article on the numerous awards captured the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee - The Jeep Grand Cherokee: Most award-winning SUV.
Now it is time for the full review of this impressive SUV/crossover. So what does the 2012 Grand Cherokee have to offer?
This Jeep is a mid-size five-passenger rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive SUV/crossover. It is available in Laredo, Limited, Overland and SRT8 editions.
The base engine is a direct-injected 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine providing 290 hp and 260 ft. lb. of torque. Larger engines are also available, however, the V6 mill is adequate for most drivers. The transmission is a smooth five-speed automatic with manual shifting on the steering wheel (the V8 engine models have a six-speed automatic transmission). This SUV’s 0-60 mph time with the V6 engine and all-wheel drive is in 9 seconds.
The Grand Cherokee’s wheelbase measures 114.8 inches and its curb weight is 4,470 lbs. The fuel tank holds 24.6 gallons and its highway driving range is 565 miles. The Grand Cherokee’s towing capacity is 5,000 lbs.
On the exterior this SUV looks solid and highly refined.
At the front the windshield is well raked (this Jeep’s drag coefficient is a low .27 Cd). The hood is broad and it contains recesses at the center and at the edges. The grille and bumper are curved and the headlights fit into the design nicely. The grille has a straightforward design and includes six vertical chrome slats.
The side profile of the Grand Cherokee includes upper glass that is outlined in chrome. The roof is flat (rather than tapering downward at the back) thus providing good interior head/cargo room in the back. There is a recessed area in the middle of the doors. The front and rear fenders are semi squared at the edges giving the vehicle a rugged look. A bit of the headlights and taillights can be seen in the front and rear fenders.
At the rear this SUV has a large rectangular hatch window. A large portion of the taillights are nicely integrated into the hatch with the rest wrapping into the rear fenders. Some good looking detail work is included under and part way up the taillights. Crisp and purposeful horizontal lines are seen throughout the hatch. A black lower insert adds contrast. Dual exhausts complete the look.
The Grand Cherokee’s interior includes very rich looking materials. The attention to detail and fit and finish are excellent throughout. The driver sees a large round tachometer on the left with the water temperature at the bottom. On the right is the speedometer with the fuel gauge at the bottom. Digital information is provided in between the tachometer and speedometer. The dash and door panels have a clean and sharp looking design. The controls are positioned for ease of use. The front bucket seats are comfortable and supportive. In the back this Jeep has good legroom and headroom. The 40/60 split rear seat folds down to increase the cargo area. There is 35 cubic feet of space with the rear seat up and 69 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seat folded down (flat).
The brakes are vented discs at all four corners measuring 12.9 inches at the front and 12.6 inches at the rear. The Grand Cherokee’s 60-0 mph stopping distance is in a short 116 feet. The tires measure 245 70 17 inch. Larger tires and wheels are also available.
The suspension up front includes short and long arms, coil springs, twin-tube shock absorbers and a stabilizer bar. At the rear the setup includes multi-links, coil springs, twin-tube shock absorbers and a stabilizer bar.
A Quadra-Lift air suspension is optional on the Limited and standard on the Overland models. This air suspension allows the ride height to vary from 6.6 inches for easy passenger, roof and cargo loading up to a class leading 10.7 inches of off road ground clearance.
Rear-wheel drive is standard on the Grand Cherokee, however, there are three optional all-wheel drive systems to choose from. The Laredo model is available with the all-wheel drive Quadra-Track I system.
The Laredo, Limited, Overland and SRT8 editions are available with Quadra-Track II. It includes a two-speed transfer case, hill decent as well as the Selec-Terrain system (the driver is able to select from five pre-programmed settings based the on or off road driving conditions).
The Limited and Overland models have an optional Quadra-Drive II system. It includes all the components of Quadra-Track II plus an electronic limited-slip differential on both the front and rear axles.
Standard features on this Grand Cherokee include dual-zone air conditioning, 8-way power driver seat, fold-flat passenger seat, tilt and telescoping steering wheel, electronic speed-proportional power steering, audio controls on the steering wheel, power doors, windows and mirrors (heated), remote power door locks. cruise control, variable intermittent rain sensing wipers, rear wiper, front and rear cupholders, front and rear reading lights, retained accessory power, sun sensor, beverage cooler, external temperature display, 12 volt power outlets (front and cargo area), interior air filtration, 9-speaker 506-watt AM/FM in-dash single CD/DVD with CD MP3 playback stereo, universal remote transmitted (for garage door, security system, etc.), auxiliary audio input and iPod/iPhone integration, USB connection, pre-wired for phone and more.
Standard safety features include four-wheel ABS brakes, front and rear head air bags, dual front side-mounted air bags, passenger air bag occupant sensing deactivation, child seat anchors, rear door child safety locks, engine immobilizer, remote anti-theft alarm system, daytime running lights, auto delay off headlights, dusk sensing headlights, stability and traction control, post-collision safety system, emergency brake preparation, electronic brake force distribution, brake drying, tire pressure monitoring and more.
Of note is that the 2012 Grand Cherokee now reveals the past Mercedes/Chrysler effort. Consequently, on the road this Jeep feels solid and it provides a real sense of security. Furthermore, it is highly refined and thus provides a smooth ride and responsive handling. On the other hand, as has been customary with past Jeeps, it can tackle off road driving and any kind of weather. In other words, the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee does everything well!
The fuel rating for the Grand Cherokee is 17 city and 23 mpg highway.
The price of the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee ranges from $26,995 to $54,470.
If you want a solid well-built SUV/crossover that has a luxurious interior and can get the job done on or off the road, the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee hard to beat! With its over 30 awards, this Jeep is the screaming value of the year and it is definitely worth your test drive.
Why have I brought the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee to your attention? My goal is to ignite your automotive passion by letting you know about great vehicles!