Jeep Cherokee

The 2015 Jeep Cherokee comes in four different trims with two engines to choose from. Both front-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive are available across all trim levels.

The basic engine in the Cherokee is a 2.4L 4-cylinder unit that produces 184 horsepower. When mated to the standard (and industry-first) 9-speed automatic and front-wheel drive, the Cherokee is capable of up to 31 mpg on the highway. The more powerful engine option is a 3.2L V6, which produces 271 horsepower and gives the Cherokee quite good acceleration for its class. This engine features stop/start technology to help boost fuel economy, and it is also mated to the same 9-speed transmission used in the 4-cylinder version.

The base Cherokee is nicely equipped, with standard items such as 17-inch wheels, keyless entry, automatic windows and door locks, Bluetooth connectivity, USB and auxiliary inputs for the stereo, steering wheel mounted cruise and audio controls and a 5-inch touchscreen.

The next level up is the Latitude trim. It includes everything in the base model, along with aluminum wheels, body-colored exterior mirrors and door handles, roof rails, projector beam fog lamps, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and tinted privacy glass

Step up to the Limited trim and things begin to get quite luxurious. Limited Cherokees get leather seats, 18-inch polished aluminum wheels, heated front seats, heated exterior mirrors and a heated steering wheel, a nicer instrument cluster, an 8.4-inch color touchscreen display, an 8-way power adjustable driver's seat, a backup camera, satellite radio connectivity, automatic headlights, dual-zone climate control and automatic headlights among other things.

The Trailhawk edition steps away from luxury and instead concentrates on off-road capabilities. The Trailhawk Cherokee includes a much nicer 4-wheel-drive system with a locking differential for ultimate grip in low traction environments. It also has more undercar protection and a one-inch lift in the suspension. Interior amenities echo what's included in the Latitude trim; however the Trailhawk does come standard with the bigger 8.4-inch touchscreen from the Limited.

Safety features on the Cherokee include anti-lock brakes, traction control, stability control, hill-start control and ten airbags. Optional safety features include a blind spot monitor, park assist, a forward collision warning system and a roadside assistance button.

Editors' Review

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Ever since the fifth-generation Jeep Cherokee went on sale in 2013, it's been a notable jack of all trades in the compact SUV class. You might get a Honda CR-V if you want more cargo space, or maybe you'd pick a Toyota RAV4 for its focus on fuel efficiency, but the Jeep Cherokee's never been bad at any of that stuff, either. A slew of updates for the 2019 model year help the Cherokee become even more well-rounded.

When the paved roads end, however, none of the competition can roughhouse off-road like the Jeep. With that in mind, I took a road trip out to Zion National Park to let the 2019 Cherokee flex its Trail Rated abilities while also seeing how it composes itself over long distances.

Road trip-worthy

Although the Cherokee is a car-based crossover SUV, this Trailhawk model's off-road preparedness makes it feel more like a lumbering pickup truck along twisty sections of road -- not that anyone is buying a rugged Cherokee for sporty driving dynamics, of course. The Cherokee Trailhawk works just fine for A-to-B driving with nicely weighted steering and confident braking, but exaggerated body motions are par for the course in this Trailhawk trim.

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The Good The 2019 Jeep Cherokee has plenty of off-road ability with respectable on-road fuel efficiency and loads of creature comforts.

The Bad Nine-speed transmission can be sluggish, and the Trailhawk model is a lot more expensive than its competitors.

The Bottom Line If off-road adventures are your thing, the Jeep Cherokee is the compact SUV to get.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 7.5
  • Features 8
  • Design 7.5
  • Media 8.5

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