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2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L First Drive Review | Jeep, Elevated (and Elongated)

Chelsea, Michigan — When bouncing these big three rows Jeep I can’t help but remember my childhood as I crossed the rocks while sprinkling water. My sister, cousin, and I all learned to drive similar terrain on the 1946 Jeep CJ-2A.It wasn’t as hairy as it would be on Grandpa’s ranch, but this trail was designed for evaluation. Wrangler For off-road worst at the automaker’s Chelsea Proving Ground.And that 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L It’s far from the old Army Copy Willys. But despite this 75-year-old Jeep swish leather, front camera feed, and real roof, this experience is well known at a basic level.

If you’re worried that the Jeep is misrepresenting its identity as it moves into the future of more family-friendly, electrified SUVs, don’t worry.This new Grand Cherokee It’s a jeep. It’s really gorgeous with its top trim and is much more comfortable to drive than what we’re used to. That’s good.

Compare with Standard 2-row Grand Cherokee — No next-generation updates until 2022 — The new L will be expanded in multiple ways to accommodate additional seating rows and overall space. It’s 15 inches longer overall than the current two-row Grand Cherokee, with an additional 6.9 inches of wheelbase. The maximum cargo volume is 84.6 cubic feet, an increase from the current 68.3 cubic feet of the two-row Grand Cherokee. However, I haven’t gained as much weight as I expected.The· Grand Cherokee LCurb weights start at 4,524 lbs for a Laredo 4×2 and reach 5,279 lbs for a V8 engine-powered Summit 4×4. This is compared to the 2021 Grand Cherokee Lared at £ 4,513 and the V8 Summit at £ 5,258. This is the difference between a well-fed domestic cat.

Jeep has achieved this weight reduction through engineering.Tom Seal, Vehicle Line Executive Jeep Grand Cherokee L His team explains that the new three rows have optimized a weight of 175 pounds. In addition to the selection of parts such as cast aluminum shock towers and extruded aluminum crossbars, technologies such as mounting the engine on the front axle not only reduce weight, but also provide a more controlled and quiet ride. To do. The Grand Cherokee L also uses a lot of high-strength steel for body rigidity, with less than 29% of mild steel remaining in the vehicle.

On the outside, the L definitely looks bigger than a regular Grand Cherokee (duh), but all proportions are satisfactory. The greenhouse looks huge, the belt lines are low, and the curved windshield bulges in front of the A-pillars. In the L example, you have to lean forward and look at the traditional 7-slot grille, which is reminiscent of. Wagoneer My dad drove when I was peeing. I was skeptical of this touch when L was first released, but I must admit that it’s actually very beautiful. All trims feature full LED lighting, while the Summit grade offers a black roof and 21-inch wheel package available.

Inside the high trim, the interior feels really premium. The Summit Reserve package is particularly impressive, with quilted leather, genuine open pore wax walnut trim and a microfiber headliner. All materials are rich in look and feel, the details are deliberately felt, and the various surfaces are unique, such as the smoothness of leather, the suppleness of wood, and the cool weight of scalloped metal in the rotary gear selector. There is a feeling of. It’s all very sensual … but in its rugged and exclusive hunting lodge-like way, it feels like a Jeep brand.

Of course, it’s not a true Jeep without an off-road chop, and the Grand Cherokee L offers it at various levels. All 4×4 versions feature an active transfer case that allows you to manage torque between axles and five different terrain modes (auto, sport, lock, snow, mud / sand). The basic Quadra-Trac I is a full-time four-wheel drive, single-speed unit that comes standard with Laredo and Limited trim. When slips are detected or predicted, up to 100% torque can be transferred to either axle. The Overland model comes standard with a Quadra-Trac II 2 speed transfer case with 2.72.1 Low range gear ratio. Optional at Overland and standard at the Summit, the Quadra-Drive II adds an electronic rear limited slip differential. Hill descent control is the standard for Overland and Summit and works both forward and backward.

In addition, the Overland and Summit trims feature Jeep Quadralift Air Suspension with automatic or manual ride height adjustment. Lower from the usual 8.3-inch clearance to improve aerodynamics, facilitate parking entry and exit, raise to 10.9-inch height to clear off-road obstacles, and increase water depths up to 24 inches. You can secure it. At full stretch, the Jeep Grand Cherokee L boasts an approach angle of 30.1 degrees, a starting angle of 23.6 degrees and a breakover angle of 22.6 degrees. The suspension features a closed-loop air system with two tanks under the rear seats and cargo area.

“For a jeep going off-road in a dusty environment (any kind of environment), having an outdoor system isn’t really practical for the life of the vehicle,” says Feel. “So I chose a closed-loop system, but this year I added quick down leveling.” This allows the suspension to be lowered by 1.8 inches in 7 seconds.

To get things going further, the available off-road groups add more protection to Overland when adventuring far away from the beaten road. This package adds a skid plate to protect the fuel tank, transfer case, underbody and front suspension. Also added are the eLSD mentioned above, 18-inch polished aluminum wheels and all-season tires. The Grand Cherokee L worked on a trail to increase the pace of the Wrangler, and all of this equipment proved useful in the test site. Even with the long L wheelbase, I was able to clear the breakover angle and articulated terrain, so I paused the approach. I was worried about the sound of rocks rubbing the skid plate, but this three-row jeep deserved the Trail Rated badge that also came with the off-road package.

Powering the Grand Cherokee L is the same two engine options found in the current two-row Grand Cherokee non-SRT / Truck Hawk version. The standard power plant is the reliable 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, which delivers 293 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. The Pentastar-equipped version is rated to be able to tow up to £ 6,200 in both 4×2 and 4×4 layouts.It’s much more than a typical three-row family crossover.. The V6 also returns a rear-wheel drive version of the 19-mile, 26-mpg highway, 21mpg per gallon city. The 4×4 V6 model gets 18/25 / 21mpg. These numbers are similar to a typical three-row family crossover.

Beyond the Overland Trim, customers who need more power can choose a 5.7-liter V8 with a 4×4 layout, offering 357 hp, 390 lb-ft of torque and 7,200 lbs of traction. V8 will be evaluated at 14/22/17 mpg. Both engines combine with a TorqueFlite 8-speed automatic transmission.

My time was spent only on the V6 version of the Grand Cherokee L, with various trims.Consider the power-to-weight ratio Compared to competitors, I was worried that this power plant might feel the huge Grand Cherokee L dull. But even the heaviest Summit Reserve Package / Trim (and the most expensive, V6 for $ 63,690 — You can find the price breakdown here), I didn’t feel slow to reach highway speeds or overtake slow cars Our long-term Hyundai Palisade.. The Grand Cherokee L feels like a good motor on and off, but the V8 is available for those who need more towing or who like the sound and feel of the hemi under the hood. Is great.

Our drive began at the Eastern Market in Detroit and took us to the Chelsea Proving Ground in Stellantis via both the highway and the winding country roads scattered across lakes in southeastern Michigan. On the highway, we used the Grand Cherokee L’s active driving assist system. It is basically a combination of adaptive cruise control and lane center maintenance steering assist. I was not worried about the cruise control function while driving. Keeping the lane center worked, but if the freeway was even a little curved, early driver support was needed.

The air suspension also features new active damping, which Jeep was able to “tune the specific control and stability of this vehicle to the three-row SUV requirements,” said Feel. In fact, this gives the Grand Chereokee L a comfortable yet truck-like ride. L bounces off the highway bumps, but the rebound feels well controlled. A great blend of traditional jeep feel and incredible comfort. .. Interestingly, when I tested the Limited Trim later that day without the Quadra-Lift, I noticed less suspension. Perhaps you’re used to feeling the bumps on the roads in Michigan, or you’re less sensitive to off-road sessions. I. In any case, the air suspension stands out as another luxury luxury.

The 10.1-inch Uconnect infotainment touch screen is standard equipment throughout the L lineup. This single screen does more than just control audio features and in-vehicle apps. Depending on how the L is equipped, it can also serve as a display for camera feeds such as parking cams, rear seat monitors, and the most important forward-looking trail cameras for us today. You can also monitor pitch and roll off-road, adjust up and down ambient lighting in the room, display a retro-looking digital decibel meter on your Macintosh premium audio system, and much more. Even better, it’s quite customizable with a variety of pages, widgets, and shortcuts. Similarly, you can customize a 10.25 inch digital instrument cluster. You can see the navigation in front of you and it also acts as an available front night vision display. There is also a heads-up display that can be used to keep an eye on the road.

However, while the driver’s seat is the best seat in the house, the rear two rows are not bad, especially if equipped with the available massage front seats. All the vehicles we sampled were in a six-seater configuration with a second row captain chair. They can be heated and ventilated and provide their own temperature control and storage console. The important thing is that the chair itself tilts and slides forward, providing a wide entrance in the third row.

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Sitting on the way home, especially the second row slid back a bit and had plenty of headroom, so I was happy to find a comfortable legroom. Even tall adults are adjacent to the rear wheel well, so two adults may have to chat, but I’m not bad about getting tall adults back there either. The third row of two-seater means that the Grand Cherokee L can only seat 6 or 7 people, Palisade Or someone else.

The 2022 Grand Cherokee L is arguably huge and crouching abnormally. It’s a fashionable and comfortable way to move more people and cargo and impress guests with its rich styling and magnificent accommodation. But while the road experience is improving, much of Jeep’s life happens far away from any pavement. Thankfully, this handsome plus-sized SUV is great for that too.

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2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L First Drive Review | Jeep, Elevated (and Elongated)

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