Recently I was chosen to examine the 2015 Cherokee Latitude 4 x 4 by Rocky Mountain Redline of Dacono, CO. They graciously brought the Jeep by my house and had a copy of the window sticker along – it was $33,825.00, including freight and several options. I’ll get into that list later, but at first glance I was surprised to see all of the black chrome trim work on the Jeep, and as the test unfolded a lot of my friends made favorable comments about the look. A gloss black appearance was featured on the grill, the window trim, roof rails, wheels, and the fascia application. Along with the Granite Crystal metallic clear coat paint, the vehicle therefore presented an aggressive, business-like look.
The Ohio-built Jeep Cherokee is not to be confused with the Grand Cherokee – this is a mid-size crossover that was introduced for the 2014 model year and was co-developed by Chrysler and Fiat. It is 182″ long, 73.2″ wide, 65.7″ high, is mounted on a 106.3″ wheelbase, and has ground clearance of 8″. Weight of the model I drove was 4,044 lbs. As of this writing, it should not be driven on the streets of South Carolina, because it can only wade through 19″ of water. That’s actually pretty good, but the weather in SC is pretty bad.
I enjoyed testing the Jeep in Colorado, and was pleased about the extra punch provided by the 3.2 liter (197.7 c.i.d.) Pentastar V-6 with 271 horsepower at 6,500 rpm. The torque rating is 239 lb. ft. at 4,400 rpm. Smooth acceleration was effected through the single-speed Activ Drive I four-wheel drive system and the new 9-speed, Chrysler-built transmission that adds economy to the Jeep’s EPA ratings – they are 28-highway, 20-city, and 23-combined miles per gallon. My reading came in as expected and just a little above the combined figure. For the four-wheel drive system, a floor dial is on hand with up to five traction control settings. They are auto, snow, sport, sand/mud, and rock, and the management system is referred to as Selec-Terrain.
The loaded Jeep Cherokee Latitude has as options the following items: customer preferred package ($600.00) – 18″ x 7″ gloss black five-spoke wheels, black trim work and P225/60R18 Continental ProContact steel radials; safety tech group ($1,045.00) – blind spot monitor, rear park assist and multi-function power mirrors; comfort/convenience group ($1,745.00) – remote starter, power lift gate, remote entry and go, power cloth buckets and XM satellite radio; V-6 engine ($1,745.00) – includes start/stop feature for economy plus dual exhausts ; UConnect ($600.00) – 8.4 infotainment screen with navigation capability. All the items were in addition to a base price of $27,095.00 and a freight charge of $995.00.
The total Jeep package was impressive, with V-6 power in an advanced power train, deluxe interior with room for five people plus 25 cubic feet of cargo, acceptable fuel economy and list price, and all the amenities except leather and moon roof. In other words, everything that you expect in a Jeep, and have since 1941.