2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD Limited

Jeep’s Grand Cherokee was introduced as a premium mid-sized SUV in 1993, with its first introduction at the N. American International Auto Show at Cobo arena in Detroit.  It is currently in its fourth generation configuration and has always featured unibody construction.

The car is on a hot streak, being named a Consumer Digest “best buy” for the seventh consecutive year.  Since 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee annual sales have topped 200,000 on seven different occasions, including last year.  And the 2017 4×4 Grand Cherokee such as I recently tested has been awarded a five-star overall safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association.

My Grand Cherokee test vehicle for June was a Velvet Red Pearl Limited 4×4 that carried an M.S.R.P. of $46,680.00.  I’m partial to red equipment and with the 18″ double ten-spoke gray wheels the Jeep was quite attractive.  A black leather interior was on hand including heat in front and rear seats, 506-watt XM stereo, 8.4″ touchscreen display, dual-pane panoramic sunroof, navigation system, blind spot detection, power-tilt steering column, and 9 speakers with a subwoofer.

The Grand Cherokee is a mid-sized SUV and seats five with cargo room in the rear of 36.3 cubic feet.  If the second row seating is folded flat that number increases to 68.3 cubic feet.  The Jeep wheelbase is 114.8″, length is 189.8″, and the weight is 4,677 lbs.  The ride, interior noise suppression, handling and guidance on the highway are all on target and visibility is good, as well.

When driving my test Jeep with Ruth, my wife, I often requested that she handle the gear shift when getting underway.  At first I am sure she thought I was nuts, but what I wanted her to experience was the deluxe “feel” associated with the transmission control.  It seems that the Jeep is definitely a “high touch”, and a “high utility” luxury SUV.

I mentioned the wheels, and can add that tires mounted on them were Michelin Premier LTX 265/60R18 all-season radials.  Of course the Jeep is a 4×4 with Quadra-Trac active on-demand system and electronic limited-slip differential.  Select-Track options while driving include Track, Sport, Auto, Snow and Tow modes.  Additionally, the Jeep had a trailer tow group of options with receiver hitch, wiring harness, etc.

Power for the Grand Cherokee Limited is supplied by a 3.6 liter (220 c.i.d.) Pentastar 24-valve V-6 with 295 horsepower, 260 lb. ft. or torque, and stop-start technology.  It is coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission with, as Jeep describes it, a “Classic style” shifter.  Economy ratings are 25 mpg-highway, 18 mpg-city, and 21 mpg-combined, and my observance was at 21.4 mpg during my time with the Jeep.

It’s evident to me why the venerable Grand Cherokee has had such staying power for almost a quarter-century.

2017 Toyota RAV4 Platinum AWD SUV

The Toyota RAV4 was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) for a review by the DJ’s – George Gray and Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello:

Blizzard Pearl White metallic – Heated gray/cinnamon leather buckets and heated steering wheel – Navigation system with 7” touchscreen – Radar, or adaptive cruise control – LED headlights and taillamps – Power moonroof – JBL 9 speaker stereo – 176 horsepower 2.5 liter 4 with dual overhead cams – 6 Speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive – Blind spot monitor, backup/around view camera, foot operated power tailgate, and lane watch – Forward emergency braking and 18” alloy wheels – $39,666.00 – 28 highway-22 city-24 combined  MPG – Made in Woodstock, Ontario, Canada

2017 Toyota Camry XSE FWD 4-Door Sedan

The Toyota Camry XSE was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) to get an analysis by the DJ’s – George Gray and Matt Arguello:

Blue Streak metallic – Charcoal gray leather-trimmed ultra suede heated buckets – 5 passenger seating – 7” touchscreen with navigation – Radar cruise control – Keyless entry and backup camera – LED daytime running lights, LED taillights – Power moonroof and remote engine start – JBL premium sound stereo w/ 10 speakers – Blind spot monitor and lane departure warning system – 268 horsepower 3.5 liter V-6 – 248 lb. ft. of torque – 6 speed automatic transmission, paddle shifters, and front-wheel drive –  $35,903.00 – EPA rating is 21 MPG city , 24 MPG combined rating and 30 MPG highway

2017 Infiniti QX50 AWD

The Infiniti QX50 was driven to Pirate Radio (FM 104.7) for the “Morning Show” with George Gray and Matt Arguello:

Graphite Shadow metallic – Graphite leather heated buckets – 5 passenger – 7” touchscreen with navigation – Radar cruise control – Keyless entry/blindspot monitor – Xenon auto-leveling headlights, daytime running lights, LED taillights – Bose 11 speaker premium sound stereo – Backup camera and “around view” parking monitor – 325 horsepower 3.7 liter V-6 w/ 267 lb. ft. of torque – 7 speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive – $45,535.00 EPA rating is 17 MPG city , 20 MPG combined 24 MPG highway – 20 gallon tank – Weighs 4,020 lbs./18.6 cubic ft. of cargo space – 186” long – 19” split-five spoke wheels

2017 Nissan Armada Platinum 4WD

20170226_172717_burst29A review of the Armada was conducted at Pirate Radio 104.7 by George Gray and Matt Arguello:

Hermosa Blue metallic

Almond leather buckets – heated – 7 passenger  – Technology Package with Navigation system with 7” touchscreen plus rear entertainment system – blind spot monitor, land keep assist – Radar cruise control – Power moonroof – LED headlights, daytime running lights, fog lights – Bose 13 speaker centerpoint surround sound stereo – Backup camera and navigation – 390 horsepower 5.6 liter V-8 (394) – 7 Speed manual transmission and four-wheel drive – $61,585.00 – 5,963 lbs. – 18 MPG on the highway, 13 MPG city – 26 gallon tanksam_0866

 

2017 Toyota Prius Four Hybrid Touring Sedan

The blue Prius Four (top of the line) was taken to Pirate Radio FM 104.7 for analysis by DJ’s George Gray and Matt Arguello:

I drove this Prius to Denver twice to attend the Denver Auto Show, and was impressed by the handling and maneuverability of this unit in congested, mid-day downtown traffic and congestion.  I can’t imagine another vehicle doing a superior job.

Blue Crush metallic – Gray Softex heated buckets – 5 passenger – 7” touchscreen – Radar cruise control – Keyless entry/blindspot monitor – Halogen headlights, Daytime running lights, LED taillights – JBL 6 speaker Greenedge sound stereo – Backup camera and navigation – 95 horsepower 1.8 liter cylinder gas and electric drive train – CVT Automatic transmission and front-wheel drive –  $34,181.00 – 54 MPG city , 52 MPG combined 50 MPG highway –  Weighs 3,080 lbs./27.4 cubic ft. of cargo space – 17” Five spoke wheels with LRR P215/45R17 tires