The familiar Jeep Cherokee that has been around for decades has given us some new surprises in its 2014 models. The new look is the first thing you'll notice, quite different than the Jeep you are used to seeing. It's been upgraded to look sleeker and more modern - loaded with updated safety features, and much more pleasant to handle on the road.
It also has the first nine-speed automatic transmission. Using a platform that's based on cars from Jeep owner Fiat of Italy.
Cherokee offers safety equipment that's usually only seen in luxury cars and includes lots of extras such as unique storage nooks, and seats that slide much further forward and back than most other SUVs. The legroom in the back has been enhanced, giving passengers over 40 inches of space.
The Cherokee, just as before, offers 4x4 off-road options, and is a heavier body than most others in its class. However, it is not standing up to the others in gas mileage.
The 2014 Jeep Cherokee's best mileage rating from the federal government is 22 miles per gallon in the city and 31 on the highway with the standard, 184-horsepower, 2.4-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine.
Cherokee also offers an optional, 271-horsepower, 3.2-liter V-6, with mileage at 19 city and 27 highway.
The 2014 Cherokee has a starting retail price of $23,990 for a front-wheel drive Sport model with the turbocharged four cylinder and nine-speed automatic. They don't offer a manual transmission though.
A 4x4 Cherokee starts at $25,990 with the 4-cylinder engine.
The lowest retail price for a 2014 Cherokee with the V-6 is $26,985, and this isn't the 4x4 model. Buyers can step into a four-wheel-drive, V-6 Grand Cherokee for as little as $31,790 with the Laredo trim. Jeep offers the Limited and Summit trim as well; the Overland model is a bit pricier, at $47,190. These starting costs are for standard equipped models.
The safety additions are awesome. Standard safety equipment on all 2014 Cherokees includes antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front and rear seat side airbags, side curtain airbags and front knee airbags. A rearview camera is either standard or optional on all models.
Trailhawk and Limited models are available with a large option package that includes a forward collision warning system (with automatic brake intervention in potential collision situations), a lane departure warning system that will give the steering wheel a nudge if you veer out of your lane on the highway, and blind-spot and rear cross-traffic alerts.
See all of the new models at your local Jeep Cherokee dealer - you might just drive off with one.
Image via YouTube