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Grand CherokeeGrand Cherokee Takes on Toyota FJ, H3, Xterra
Posted by mike on 2006/3/28 10:13:01 (2056) reads has a great article in their April 2006 issue (and also online) that pit the Grand Cherokee against the Hummer H3, all-new Toyota FJ, and Nissan Xterra in an off-road and on-road test.

The offroad portion of the test took place in the high desert around Death Valley, California.

The idea for this test was sparked by the Hummer public-relaters, who swore their H3 was to off-roading what a Daisy Cutter is to Fourth of July firecrackers. “Only a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon can beat us,” they boasted, “and we don’t compete with that.” In the $30,000-SUV range, what the H3 does face, however, is the comprehensively reworked Nissan Xterra, now riding on a platform that underpins the Pathfinder and the burly Titan pickup. The H3 also faces the just-introduced 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser, which makes the most of the 4Runner chassis, minus 3.9 inches of wheelbase. And it also seemed wise to include a Jeep Grand Cherokee of some stripe, in part because that’s what won our “Rock-Climbing SUVs, Size M” off-road comparo in April 2005. That Jeep, however, was fitted with a Hemi and the top-level Quadra-Drive II off-road package, jacking its base way north of 30 grand. So we backed down to a 4.7-liter V-8 mated to the less dear — and admittedly less capable — Quadra-Trac II. Presto, we had a fourth Mengel Pass contender that was fiscally appropriate. The Laredo came with a five-speed automatic, because that’s the only way Jeep builds ’em. Our three other contestants were fitted with manuals.

So, which vehicle was rated highest? While the H3 was hands down the winner for the off-road portion - its on-road performance was less than stellar. The Grand Cherokee didn't win either - but made a strong showing.

Check out the entire article.

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Poster Thread
Posted: 2006/3/29 10:39  Updated: 2006/3/29 10:39
Just popping in
Joined: 2005/7/29
Posts: 6
 Re: Grand Cherokee Takes on Toyota FJ, H3, Xterra
I'm with erik.
Let's see how the H3 does against the new 4 door Wrangler. That would be a little closer to an apples to apples comparison, although I'd be a little unfair to the H3.

Poster Thread
Posted: 2006/3/29 5:36  Updated: 2006/3/29 5:36
Not too shy to talk
Joined: 2005/12/28
From: Williamsport, PA
Posts: 37
 Re: Grand Cherokee Takes on Toyota FJ, H3, Xterra
The Grand Cherokee does not play in this market.

To compare the FJ to the Grand is ridiculous. The Wrangler Rubicon Unlimited would have been a better test. It pushes $30K in price and would have spanked everyone off-road.

Poster Thread
Posted: 2006/3/28 11:54  Updated: 2006/3/28 11:54
Not too shy to talk
Joined: 2006/1/9
Posts: 34
 Re: Grand Cherokee Takes on Toyota FJ, H3, Xterra
I'm impressed that the other manufacturers offer a manual tranny for those that enjoy the adventure of driving. This will provide opportunities for those of us who like manual transmissions. Now if we can only convince them to link a manual with a diesel, we will be able to realize some fuel economy and real world performance.

Poster Thread
Posted: 2006/3/28 11:41  Updated: 2006/3/28 11:41
Just popping in
Joined: 2006/3/28
Posts: 3
 Re: Grand Cherokee Takes on Toyota FJ, H3, Xterra
One gets the impression from the article that if the Grand had been equipped with Quadra-Drive, which was once available on the Laredo (I have a 2000 Laredo with Quadra-Drive) but now is not, it would have scored significantly higher overall. IMHO, DCX should make Quadra-Drive available on all trim levels of the Grand Cherokee and Commander.
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