The Jeep Grand Cherokee is one in all the hottest SUVs out there immediately, and for good motive. Not solely does it look nice, this rugged car gives immense off-road functionality, a coddling cabin and loads of refinement. Accordingly, each time Jeep redesigns this mountain goat, it is huge information. And for 2021, that is very true, since the newly minted Grand Cherokee L is pumped up in stature and now comes with an ordinary third-row seat.

The addition of that new bench permits the Grand Cherokee L to seat as much as seven folks (a six-passenger configuration is obtainable, too), vastly rising its versatility. And this third row is not just a few kids-only zone — life-sized adults match with loads of area for knees and noggins, and the backside cushion is a good top above the flooring. Of course, the second-row chairs are even nicer to plunk your bottom down on and the outboard ones tip up and slide for simpler entry to these rearmost seats.

To accommodate a 3rd row, the L is 15.1 inches longer than the outgoing normal Grand Cherokee and the wheelbase has been stretched by 7 inches, alterations that contribute to the car’s longroof look. Naturally, when you do not want additional seats or want a extra manageable car, Jeep will provide a conventional two-row model, however it will not arrive till later this yr.

It’s debatable whether or not the new Grand Cherokee L is extra enticing than its predecessor. The L’s gaping decrease air consumption and curiously angled grille look unusual, particularly on a physique that is in any other case cleanly styled and good-looking. Matching these recent appears, the 2021 Grand Cherokee L is constructed on a brand new versatile structure, a unibody construction comprised of greater than 60% high-strength metal, which supplies this off-roader an nearly unyielding spine. To cut back weight, the car’s closures, like the hood and liftgate, are made from aluminum.

I’m not completely offered on the Grand Cherokee L’s exterior styling, however designers knocked it out of the park with this Jeep’s inside. The format, supplies, consolation and tech are all primo. The range-topping Summit mannequin comes with beautiful Nappa leather-based or super-premium Palermo cow hides when you nab the Summit Reserve package deal. You can even get stunning open-pore wooden accents and even Berber flooring mats. A well-known rotary shifter is normal tools, although its metallic development and artfully milled edges make this dial really feel like a chunk of knickknack. A suede-like headliner is obtainable, too, as is a 19-speaker McIntosh audio system. In higher-end fashions, this Jeep’s inside is luxury-car good, sufficient to provide automobiles like the Acura MDX and Lincoln Aviator a run for his or her cash.

This inside rivals these of some luxurious automobiles.

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The Grand Cherokee L’s symmetrical dashboard arcs from door to door, bringing to thoughts a fowl’s outstretched wings. In the center is both an 8.4- or 10.1-inch touchscreen, each of that are house to the Android-powered Uconnect 5 infotainment system. With fairly graphics and a great deal of performance, this multimedia array is straightforward to make use of and supposedly 5 occasions quicker than its predecessor. A ten.3-inch digital instrument cluster is bundled at no additional cost and you may even get night time imaginative and prescient.

Standard security tech consists of automated emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-keeping help, blind-spot monitoring and adaptive cruise management with stop-and-go functionality. Active Driving Assist, mainly adaptive cruise with lane centering, is accessible on Overland fashions and normal on the Summit trim. This hands-on system works phenomenally, holding the Jeep locked in its lane and adeptly various velocity based mostly on site visitors situations. Capacitive sensors in the steering-wheel rim know when you’ve received a hand on the wheel or not, popping up an orange warning in the instrument cluster if you do not have at the very least a pair fingers making contact. Taking issues a step additional, Hands-Free Active Driving Assist will probably be supplied in the 2022 mannequin yr. This ought to operate like GM’s wonderful Super Cruise system, offering hands-free comfort on authorized motorways.

Along with a two-row variant, an electrified model of the Grand Cherokee is underneath growth, too. But for now, the Grand Cherokee L is obtainable with two pleasant and acquainted engines. If you are well-versed in the Stellantis powertrain lineup, nothing right here will shock you. The base providing is a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6. It delivers a decent 293 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque, sufficient pork and beans to permit this SUV to tow as much as 6,200 kilos. As easy and quiet as ever, this bent-six gives sufficient oomph for many prospects in regular diving, even when it does not make the Grand Cherokee L really feel significantly vigorous.

Both a 3.6-liter V6 and 5.7-liter V8 are supplied.

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Of course, when you want extra gusto, a 5.7-liter Hemi V8 is on the menu, too. Smooth, spirited and supremely sonorous, it gives a 357-horse stampede and 390 lb-ft of twist, sufficient for this SUV to tug 7,200 kilos. If you do not thoughts the added price — each up entrance and at the gasoline pump — that is the powerplant to get.

Rounding out the Grand Cherokee L’s drivetrain is an ordinary eight-speed automated transmission. Engineers have years of expertise with this gearbox and its tuning is nearly good. The transmission shifts rapidly and seamlessly, plus it is greater than prepared to drop just a few gears when it’s essential boogie. Torque will get routed by means of this cog-swapper to both the rear wheels or one in all three totally different four-wheel-drive programs.

A V6-powered Grand Cherokee L with rear-wheel drive is EPA-rated at 19 mpg metropolis and 26 mpg freeway. Combined, anticipate 21 mpg. Opting for four-wheel drive reduces the first two figures by 1 mpg every, although the mixed ranking is unchanged. Hemi-powered Grand Cherokees, which come normal with four-wheel drive, are rated at 14 mpg metropolis, 22 freeway and 17 mpg mixed.

Uconnect 5 appears nice on the elective 10.1-inch touchscreen.

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This Jeep’s on-road efficiency is admirable. Acceleration is brisk, particularly with the Hemi. And because of a spread of NVH enhancements — issues like acoustic glass, particular door seals and enhanced energetic noise cancellation — the Grand Cherokee L’s inside is all the time serene. The out there air suspension enhances dynamics and improves off-road efficiency by permitting the physique to be raised a number of inches. The car’s journey high quality is smooth, even when fitted with 21-inch clodhoppers that are available in the $3,000 Summit Reserve Group choices package deal, but physique roll is minimal when pushed by means of corners. The steering is gentle however fairly exact, which makes the Grand Cherokee L really feel smaller than it truly is.

Off street, this three-row SUV is a Jeep by means of and thru, an extremely succesful mountain goat regardless of its cumbersome dimensions. Properly geared up fashions have as much as 10.9 inches of floor clearance and may drive by means of a powerful 24 inches of water. This SUV’s off-road geometry is praiseworthy, too. Speaking in most figures, the strategy angle is 30.1 levels, breakover angle 22.6 and its departure measurement clocks in at 23.6 levels.

Of the three out there four-wheel-drive programs, Quadra-Drive II is the most superior. It features a two-speed switch case and an electronically locking rear differential. If slippage is detected, this method can mechanically redistribute torque to the wheels with extra traction. Quadra-Drive II is accessible on Overland fashions and normal on the Summit trim.

Yep, it is a Jeep alright.

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Crashing over rocks on a very gnarly part of off-road course at Stellantis’ Chelsea, Michigan proving floor makes me respect the out there high-strength metal skid plates, which defend delicate underbody componentry from tough terrain. Bashing into and scraping alongside boulders causes me to wince in ache, although the spotters by no means bat an eye fixed and neither does the Grand Cherokee L. Helping tailor this SUV’s habits to varied situations, the Selec-Terrain traction-management system has 5 modes: auto, sport, rock, snow and dust/sand. Hill-descent management mechanically checks the Grand Cherokee L’s velocity, even in reverse.

The 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L is assembled in Detroit and goes on sale this month. It will probably be supplied in 4 trim ranges: Laredo, Limited, Overland and Summit. Of course, that is simply the begin till there is a Trackhawk mannequin or a plug-in hybrid variant or no matter else Jeep’s engineers could also be cooking up.

An entry-level, rear-wheel-drive Grand Cherokee L begins at $38,690 together with $1,695 in supply charges. Opt for four-wheel drive and you will be spending a further $2,000. My V6-powered Summit tester checks out for a hefty $66,275, a determine padded by the $1,995 Advanced ProfessionalTech Group, the $245 Luxury Tech Group, a shimmering Diamond Black Crystal Pearl-Coat paint job for $345 and, in fact, the expensive Summit Reserve package deal. That’s a whole lot of hard-earned scratch to spend, however because of the Grand Cherokee L’s refinement, functionality and luxurious inside, that determine will not be unreasonable, particularly in comparison with a few of its luxurious competitors.

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