The 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee has been in the spotlight lately, with Teknikens Värld claiming that the vehicle failed their Moose test (or Elk test) miserably. Chrysler called "bullshit" on that claim, but it’s not going to be so easy convincing the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that their latest safety concerns are bogus.
The NHTSA is investigating the SUV because of two complaints they received from Grand Cherokee customers. Apparently, there have been some under-hood fires that have caused the destruction of both vehicles. The sources of the fires are unknown at this point, but one customers stated that a hose ruptured when the vehicle was traveling at low speeds: "Mechanic received directive from Chrysler on a fix. He made the fix as directed, but the new hose quickly burst on him during testing," the owner wrote to the agency. The other owner’s complaint was that he "glanced in the rearview mirror and noticed smoke outside the vehicle. He pulled over and exited the vehicle, when suddenly massive flames erupted from under the hood."
We’re not very sure how this investigation will affect the Grand Cherokee, but if these claims lead to a recall, there will be almost 107,000 Grand Cherokee units affected.
The guys over Teknikens Värld recently got a little more than they bargained for when they performed a Moose test (or Elk test) with the brand-spanking new 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Moose test determines how a vehicle acts when the driver evades a suddenly appearing obstacle, such as an animal or a child, and the Grand Cherokee didn’t exactly get to the top of the class.
The purpose of this test - done at very low speeds - was to determine how well the SUV’s active safety system would work. At only 39.5 mph, the Jeep Grand Cherokee went up on two wheels, in the middle of the maneuver. If it wasn’t for the professional driver behind the wheel, it would have easily rolled over. As many can imagine, not everyone that purchases vehicles have professional driving skills, so at the hands of probably most Jeep Grand Cherokee owners, the result could be deadly. According to Teknikens Värld’s Linus Pröjtz, this is an unacceptable result for a 2012 SUV, and we would have to 100% agree with this.
By comparison, SUVs like the Volkswagen Touareg and the Volvo XC90 did well at even greater speeds of 43.5 mph. To make matters worse, when Teknikens Värld performed the Moose Test on the previous generation of the Jeep Grand Cherokee, it passed the test with no problems at all.
This information should certainly not fall on deaf ears, especially the ears of Chrysler heads.
UPDATE 07/09/2012: Teknikens Varld’s tough review of the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee immediately caught the attention of Chrysler heads and the company is none too pleased with the results. Their displeasure doesn’t stem from the Grand Cherokee’s failure, though. According to Chrysler, several attempts were made by Chrysler Group engineers to recreate the two-wheeled escapade of Varld’s test, to no avail. Chrysler then joined Teknikens Varld’s team to see if they could recreate the terrible result and they also could not. Turns out, the Jeep used in Varld’s first Moose test was loaded beyond its weight specifications. The Grand Cherokee’s weight limitations are clearly stated on the vehicle and in the owner’s manual.
All is good in our world again.
Hit the jump to read the full statement from Chrysler.
UPDATE 07/10/2012: It looks like Teknikens Varld is not going to give up. After Chrysler attacked them and said their test was not accurate, the Swedish magazine posted a second part to their test in which they explained how the Grand Cherokee failed the evasive maneuver test. According to them, the car they tested was loaded according to the specifications for the maximum load in the Swedish registration certificate and was riding on standard equipment tires. Also, all systems, such as chassis settings, air suspension, and similar, were in normal mode. Even so, in each test they performed, the car either went up on two wheels or was close to overturning. We’re assuming Chrysler is going to have something to say about this as well. The drama continues!!
UPDATE 07/13/2012: The guys from Teknikens Varld are seriously not going to give up! Today they have posted a new part to their Grand Cherokee moose test in which they advise customers not to buy the new Jeep Grand Cherokee until Jeep/Chrysler solves the problems. We are pretty curious to find out what Jeep has to say about this.
If you liked the Jeep Grand Cherokee Sports Concept unveiled at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, you will be very happy to know that the company has finally decided to come out with a production version. Thanks to a very positive consumer response, Jeep has announced that the new Grand Cherokee S Limited will go on sale starting September 2012.
The new Grand Cherokee S Limited follows the same design language of the concept: distinctive styling cues and Black accents for the exterior, Nappa leather and carbon fiber elements for the interior, and a 241 HP 3.0-litre V-6 turbo-diesel engine under the hood.
This special edition will also be equipped with Quadra-Trac II 4x4 system with two-speed transfer case and Brake Traction Control System (BTCS), as well as lots of premium safety features, including: Adaptive Cruise Control, Forward Collision Warning, and Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-path detection.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee S Limited.
A few days ago, Jeep announced that they would unveil six new vehicles at the annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah. Now, the company has unveiled the first official details on the concept. The first of them is the Grand Cherokee Trailhawk - a concept car that takes the car’s off-road capabilities to a new level, but also adds a more aggressive look.
The Trailhawk Concept is painted in Stone White and is combined with Mineral Gray on the grille surround, lower front applique, mirror caps, and rear light bar. Red is thrown into the equation on the grille mesh, front and rear tow hooks, Jeep logos on wheel center caps, and bolt holes in the alloy wheels. The concept will also get black headlamp surrounds, black exterior front and rear badging, Red "Trail Rated" badges on the front fenders, and a unique "Trailhawk" badge on the rear tailgate.
A more aggressive stance was provided thanks to the addition of a new set of 18" 5-spoke alloy Mineral Gray wheels wrapped in Goodyear Wrangler SilentArmor off-road tires. Jeep has also added additional side-wall protection and modified Mopar rock rails – engineered to fully protect the lower body from rugged rocky terrain.
If there was ever a concern about how cool a car may be, all one would have to do is check it out as it takes its turn around the Nurburgring. As of late, the trips around the Nurburgring have included the BMW M5 and the new generation Porsche 911 Carrera, which both clocked in at under eight minutes. Now, it’s time for a larger model to throw down. The new Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 lapped the ’Ring in 8:49 at the hands of Sabine Schmitz.
This time isn’t too shabby, but it still doesn’t outrun the 8:24 lap time achieved by the BMW X6 M. Looks like the American SUV still has a few tweaks to be done to perform better than its German competition.
The new Grand Cherokee SRT8 was revealed at the 2011 New York Auto Show and Chrysler put extensive efforts into the model to make it a cut above the rest. It is powered by a 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 that delivers an estimated 465 HP and 465 lb.-ft. of torque and can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds. Top speed goes to 155 mph.
Back in January Jeep has announced the Grand Cherokee Concept Special Edition next to a "Name My Ride" contest. And as a thank you gift for all the fans that have entered their name for the model - more more than 100,000 entries from enthusiasts of the Jeep brand – which boasts more than 2 million Facebook fans, Jeep has now unveiled the production version of the concept - Grand Cherokee Altitude - the winning name.
This special edition will be distinguished by a grille surround painted in black gloss combined with platinum chrome used for the mesh grille and lower fascia applique. The headlamp bezels and the liftgate light is also painted in black, while the car sits on 20" tires that surround black-gloss aluminum wheels.
The list of standard equipment is quite long and includes among others: standard leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, a 9-speaker 506-watt amp sound system with subwoofer, iPod/MP3 connectivity, Parkview™ rear back-up camera, ParkSense® rear-park assist system and Keyless Enter-N-Go.
The new vehicle will arrive at Jeep dealers this May and will be priced from $35,595 for 4x2 models and $37,595 for 4x4 models.
Whereas the Grand Cherokee SRT8 is capable of producing ’only’ 420-something horsepower, the Audi R8 carries 525 horsepower while the Switzer-tuned GT-R has 850 horsepower, and the X6M carries 620 ponies. But things become very, very different when a Grand Cherokee SRT8 packs a monstrous 7.2-liter V8 engine that produces no less than 1,000 horsepower. When you line up an SUV carrying that much power, all common sense is thrown out the proverbial window.
In this video, we have a 1,000-horsepower Grand Cherokee SRT8 engaging in a drag race with the three aforementioned vehicles. It’s a rare sight to see a Jeep SUV put a German supercar and a high-powered German SUV to shame. The only car that still managed to get a leg-up on the Jeep SUV was the Switzer-tuned GT-R, which took advantage of its own tuning upgrade to blast the strip and let the Grand Cherokee SRT8 eat its dust.
Check out the video and see how a 1,000-horsepower Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 does in a full-on drag race.
Jeep is celebrating the launch of the Grand Cherokee SRT8 on the European market with two custom-built versions of the SRT8 called the Ferrari Editions. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out that the SRT8’s transformation will be all about getting it to look like a Ferrari, at least in terms of colors and styling. Highlighting the transformation are exclusive Rosso Corsa colored exteriors, red leather interiors, and other odes to Ferrari, including being delivered to the Fiorano circuit in Maranello, Italy by Scuderia Ferrari Formula One drivers, Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa.
The two special Gran Cherokee SRT8 units are painted in a special Rosso Corsa paint finish and then combined with a matte-black front grille and matte black dual-pane sunroof. The standout feature of the paint job is the race-inspired, glossy black driver’s stripe with a white accent going from the front bumper up through the hood, roof, rear spoiler, and ending at the rear bumper. The aggressive look of the car provided by the SRT-exclusive design and the Italian flag painted on the underside of the rear spoiler add to the appeal and are topped off with a new set of unique forged aluminum, 20-inch wheels painted black and a lowered (1.5 inches) suspension.
The interior of the Grand Cherokee Ferrari Edition comes with exclusive Ferrari Red leather inserts on the seats with sculpted bolsters. The leather-wrapped SRT8 steering wheel with mounted paddle shifters features red contrasting stitching, while the unique instrument cluster features yellow dials which give the cabin the look of the GT cars produced in Maranello.
If there was ever an SUV that could be categorized as automotive porn, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Ferrari Edition would be it. Unfortunately, the two shown in the picture will be the only two ever made unless a tuning firm picks it up somewhere. Hint, hint, all you tuners!
UPDATE 03/05/2012: Formula One stars Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso have just received their custom Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 Ferrari Edition models. Do you think they liked them? Hit the jump to find out!
Jeep doesn’t usually make the kind of attention-grabbing headlines in Europe the way it does in the States. But now that the company is slowly establishing its footing across the pond, it looks like their set to use the 2012 Geneva Motor Show as the perfect place to make a sparkling first impression.
All in all, Jeep is bringing three "production-intent" concept vehicles to Geneva. We’ve already touched on the Compass Black Look Concept and the Wrangler Mountain Edition. Now, we turn our attention towards the Grand Cherokee Sports Concept
Just like Compass Black Look Concept, the Grand Cherokee Sports Concept comes dressed with plenty of aesthetic modifications, including a a gloss black accent on the headlamp bezels, grille surround, tinted rear passenger windows, a lift gate light-bar, and roof molding covers that have taken the place of the roof rack. There’s also a new mesh grille, a lower bumper fascia appliqué in Platinum Chrome, black chrome dual exhaust tips, and a new set of 20" aluminum wheels.
Inside, special features include Nappa leather and suede seats, a heated leather steering wheel, carbon fiber trim pieces on the instrument panel and door trim panels, and bright brake and accelerator pedals.
No performance modifications were given to the special edition Grand Cherokee, which means that you can expect it to carry a 3.0-liter V6 turbo-diesel engine with Fiat’s Multijet II technology, one that produces producing 241 horsepower and 406 lb/ft of torque and mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with Electronic Range Select (ERS).
Jeep unveiled the Grand Cherokee SRT8 at the 2011 New York Auto Show and now driveSRT.com is offering us a pretty cool video presenting the production process of the most powerful Grand Cherokee out there. The video was shot at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant where the SRT is produced.
The video shows some very lucky guy who just bought a Grand Cherokee SRT8 and, as a reward, was invited to take a tour of the build and assembly process. Unfortunately, we can’t join him, but this video provides a good picture of how the SRT8 is built.
As a reminder, the SRT8 is powered by a 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 that delivers an estimated 465 HP and 465 lb.-ft. of torque. This is just enough to sprint it from 0 to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and up to a top speed of 155 mph.