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Old 26-01-2019
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Default Cherokee vs Grand

Hi folks I drive the Cherokee limited the other week as I have my heart set on a trailhawk but they didn’t have one on the lot. What I want to know for general off-road use which is the more capable Cherokee trailhawk or grand Laredo?
The second question is would the Cherokee limited keep up with say a Mitsubishi Pajero sport for light to medium off-road use.


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Old 26-01-2019
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Honestly, it’s pretty difficult to say which is the ‘best’ off-road - they all have differences that are more or less suited to different circumstances.

For an off-the-shelf vehicle, it’s probably pretty hard to beat the KL Trailhawk for traction. Low range effectively locks the centre diff, and you have a rear diff lock on hand, plus the electronic traction aids. Traction is never an issue (subject to your tyres). The Achilles heel of the KL is ground clearance - it’s not bad for a factory vehicle, but you need to be mindful, pick your lines and take it easy off road. If you misjudge, there’s plenty of underbody protection - the bottom of the thing looks like a sled.
Otherwise, the OEM tyres in the Trailhawk are rubbish off road - your number one upgrade is decent all-terrain tyres.

Honestly, if you’re talking stock vehicles, I think a KL Trailhawk and a Grand Laredo would probably be pretty evenly matched. Personally I’m a big fan of the rear diff locker in the KL, but the electronic systems aren’t a bad substitute. The Laredo will have a little more wheel-travel, but with independent suspension at both ends neither of them have amazing flex - both will tend to ‘see-saw’ on uneven terrain more than an old-school 4x4. That’s the trade off for on-road comfort.

As to Cherokee Limited vs Paj Sport - the Paj hands down - mainly because the limited sits relatively low and has long front and rear overhangs. If nothing else, you’re running a good risk of getting hung up or ripping something off. Not to say it’s no good for lighter-duty stuff, but you’ll have to be very careful about clearing things you wouldn’t need to think about in the Paj. If it were the KL Trailhawk vs the Paj, it’s harder to call. The KL has better traction, but the Paj has more flex. I’d take the KL for sand and “General” medium off-roading, but for rock-hopping the Paj Sport’s wheel flex would give you a bit more control (less see-sawing).
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This is generally the conclusions I came to. The sticking point on the jl trailhawk is the clunky auto and for both the Jeeps the missus is stuck on the price. I on the other hand currently drive a jk and looking for something more sensible for the family that will still let us do some 4x4.


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Old 26-01-2019
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Yeah, the 9 speed in the KL has its quirks... you get used to most of its behaviors and learn to drive it accordingly, but it still gives me the odd “WTF” moment. I’ve become a fan of ‘snow’ mode. It takes off in 2nd and runs in AWD, but gear changes are smoother and it tends to generally hold revs a little higher, rather than always trying to hold the highest gear possible. Snow also limits the highest gear to 6th, so on the highway in hilly terrain it’ll shuffle a bit less... the V6 will get along pretty well when you put the boot in, but it’s not the torquiest thing in the mid range so hilly terrain and the transmissions desire to hold the highest gear possible in ‘Auto’ mode aren’t always ideal when cruising on the highway. I believe they’ve improved the calibration in the newer models (mines a MY15), but I do wish they’d just stuck the 8 speed from the Grand into the KL.

I get the price thing - but either KL or Grand are a bit like Swiss Army knives - not the best at any one thing, but when it comes to a vehicle that’s at home doing just about anything, there’s not much that compares. That said, given their sales/brand image problems lately, I’d have thought they’d be pretty sharp on their pricing.
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Well retail is up over 50k when some of the other options are as low as 40 in ex demo(250km or less)

I also what 2017 or newer cause that’s when they increased the tow capacity of the Cherokee.


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Quote:
Originally Posted by fireant View Post
Well retail is up over 50k when some of the other options are as low as 40 in ex demo(250km or less)

I also what 2017 or newer cause that’s when they increased the tow capacity of the Cherokee.


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The tow capacity was about 2200 kg braked for all 6 cyl KL’s from the start. For some reason FCA initially listed unbraked capacity at 450kg, then that was later increased to 750kg - but max braked capacity has been the same all along.

Though it was around 2017 they added a few extra features - like electric passenger seat with lumbar adjust - in the earlier ones the passsenger seat is manual with no lumbar adjustment. If I were buying, that, the 5 year warranty and the hope for a better-calibrated transmission would make me aim for the later models.
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I have wondered what they changed to increase from450 to 750kg unbraked. I want the unbraked as high as possible or 750 cause out camper is unbraked.


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I have wondered what they changed to increase from450 to 750kg unbraked. I want the unbraked as high as possible or 750 cause out camper is unbraked.


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Haha. They didn’t change anything - I think they were just sloppy when they did the paperwork. That’s probably also why it was also launched with “MA” (passenger vehicle) certification, which meant lifts and bigger tyres weren’t legal. Obviously they got a lot of “feedback” about that and the tow rating so they revised and upped the unbraked tow rating and changed the classification to MC (off road). All KL Trailhawks originally plated as MA are now also recognized as MC. There was a lot of hoo-ha at the time because the Grand has the same MA/MC plating issue.

A bit of trivia for you - but basically both issues boiled down to FCA being lazy/stupid - nothing mechanical changed.
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So when they changed the plate did the tow rating change.



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