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Grand CherokeeDaimlerChrysler Touting Grand Cherokee On-Road Capabilities
Posted by mike on 2004/8/18 0:00:00 (708) reads

The marketing plan for the Grand Cherokee focuses more at on-road performance

(from a DaimlerChrysler press release)

Since its introduction in 1992, the Jeep® Grand Cherokee has revolutionized the sport-utility market. With best-in-class tractive capability and best-in-class power, the all-new 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee is designed, engineered and built to master every imaginable day-to-day driving condition, whether on-road or off-road.

The third generation Jeep Grand Cherokee offers improved capability and superior on-road ride and handling in a well-appointed package with a number of new premium amenities. The result is a Jeep that is all-new from the ground up, and all Jeep from the inside out.

“Whether it’s the outback or the opera that your travels lead you to, the all-new Trail-RatedTM Jeep Grand Cherokee cuts a trail no other SUV can follow,” said Jeff Bell, Vice President – Jeep. “Just as it did when it first debuted on the market, the 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee sets the benchmark for off-road capability and continues to do so for on-road refinement.”

An all-new independent front suspension provides the driver with a greater sense of precision and control, more precise steering, and reduces vehicle weight and head toss. Front suspension wheel travel is increased by almost 10 percent over the previous generation vehicle, and a tight turning diameter of 37.1 ft. is tighter than the current Jeep Grand Cherokee to provide even more nimble handling.

The new five-link rear suspension geometry, including a track bar, also improves lateral stiffness to match that of the front suspension for optimum handling.

The innovative Dynamic Handling System (DHS) will be available with the 5.7-liter HEMI engine – a Chrysler Group first application of a hydraulic-controlled active stabilizer system. DHS delivers a high level of driver confidence by significantly reducing body roll, resulting in sportier handling when turning or maneuvering, while providing a smoother ride when traveling straight ahead. DHS will be a late availability offering on the 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Also offered for the first time on the Jeep Grand Cherokee is an Electronic Stability Program (ESP), which aids the driver in maintaining vehicle directional stability in severe driving maneuvers on any type of surface. Using signals from sensors throughout the vehicle, the system determines the appropriate brake and throttle adjustments for directional stability of the vehicle.

Grand Cherokee’s new rack and pinion steering system imparts a more precise steering feel translated to the driver through fewer linkages than a recirculating ball steering system. Even with the 2.5-inch increase in track, Grand Cherokee’s nimbleness and tight turning diameter are maintained with the new steering system.

Grand Cherokee’s new interior is rich and inviting with a two-tone instrument panel, door trim and new finishes. Seat contours are precise and ergonomic with increased seat track travel. Increased headroom adds a feeling of even more spaciousness to the interior. The dramatic and elegant instrument panel design offers a high degree of precision and control. In the cargo area, features, such as a reversible load floor panel, enhance versatility and storage. New premium amenities, including GPS Navigation radio, rear seat DVD, Boston Acoustics audio, UConnect™ hands-free communication system, Smart Beam® and ParkSense™, rear park assist, will be available on the new Jeep Grand Cherokee.


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Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: ridiculous
This is nuts.....we had about 6 different people comment on how the new Grand will be just as off-road capable as the old one. Wow.....and I mean wow......do any of these people actually own a Jeep???? Let me just run down a few facts to enlighten us all and throw that arguement out the window:

FACT = The new Grand has a lower running ground clearance than the last.

FACT = Less ground clearance means less capability off road (is anyone following yet??)

FACT = If you have ever seen IFS in action; then you know quite well that it SEVERELY underperforms those vehicles with solid axles. The "increase" in front wheel travel by 10% was measured by comparing the new Grand to an old Grand with it's front axle sway bar still connected!!! Pop off the links and that number will easily reverse to about -110%!

The first guy said it best.....we started this decade with 3 solid, off road capable vehicles. Jeep has killed two and has one more to go. Make no mistake, Jeep is pulling itself from a unique market of capable off roaders into the overcrowded sea of luxury gadget mobiles. The new Grand is going to have one big thing going for it; and that is the 4 letters that the American public has seen as tried and true for so long. Once the brand and image has been successfully diluted in a sea of Hondas; we can say bye bye to Jeep. I do hope, therefore, that Jeep commits to keeping one true off road vehicle in its lineup....that would help keep the image and the sales.

The camp jeep guy right above me also raised a good point. As Jeep becomes more and more focused on pavement, and less focused on the off road capability that original jeep fans love; Camp Jeep is going to have to change as well. At first they'll probably make the OffRoad 101 course a bit easier to accomadate the new Grand; then they'll probably end up setting up an on road driving test for the newer, less off road vehicles. Eventually, the brand will become diluted to the point where the owners of Jeeps will be a bit like Honda owners and care little for off road driving and the great outdoors.....and that will be the end of Camp Jeep as well. After all, if they threw a camp Honda, how many of their loyal customers would show up????


Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: LGK
Does anybody remember the former "Grand Cherokee ?Wagoneer" full-size station waggons Jeep made. They were not exactly Rubicon performers but were great for taking a lot of gear to the back woods. This is what the new Grand has evolved to and it is about time. All you CJ lovin' hard rock crawlin' complainers will never be satisfied. While I love my TJ for what it is, it can not hall the family and goods to go on a long trip. It can not haul the large trailer I need. This vehicle will sell and I won't have to buy a Ford.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: jgreen
here is my comment Saw the new Grand Cherokee at Camp Jeep Va and it does not impress.As a matter fact they pulled it from the Willys survival island demo for some unknown reason. They had in the program Liberty, Unlimited, 05 Grand demo capilbilities against the competition(Rav 4,Explorer,Escape) but they used the 04 Grand inplace of 05 Grand. Nobody would give explanation for this switch. But one look at the new Grand low rider and you can tell why.Looks like a Rainer or Trailblazer to me. Sure hope Rescue is built to save the day!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: 2sad
Two down, one to go. Then Jeep will finally be dead. Thank you DC.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: WK
The mistake DCX is making is not realizing that consumers perceive ownership value even in features that they might not ever use. Like in a sturdy, capable SFA ste up in the Grande Cherokee for example.

I would guess that less that 5% of GC owners even know what an SFA is. The new WK is not losing any off-road capability, while SFA may be more durable over time, the IFS setup will still perform well and easily maintain Jeep's perceived ownership value.


Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: TJmudder
Hmmm, interesting article, wonder just what the 4-door wrangler-like vehicle is. Dakar??? Sure hope so. Sounds like Detroit News has a good information source.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: skramblewishes
An article in today's Detroit News speaks of the product "blitz" coming from Jeep. The article includes the Compass ( Scout ), the new Grand Cherokee and the Commander. It also speaks of a new four door Wrangler. Perhaps the Dakar concept is finally coming to light.

Unfortunately there seems to be no new Scrambler coming out any time soon.

Here is the website:

http://www.detnews.com/2004/autosinsider/0408/20/d01-248299.htm

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Mike #2
'Best in class' performance not only means Lexus and Mercedes, but the upcoming Hummer H3, the next generation G-wagen, Porsche Cayene/VW Toureg (with stream fording lift suspension), etc.
It's not hard to get knocked down from being the King of the Hill.
What JEEP really needs to look out for is the proposed Hummer H4---A small light-weight 4-6 passenger straight axle suspension off-road capable vehicle is not hard to create-HECK!!! guys are whipping them up in their backyards with welders and tube steel, what's to stop 'The General' from making a straight axle front/rear open top off-roader with a 6 speed, and their new V-8 with Displacement-on-Demand, electrical starting/stopping, and electrical accelleration assist technology?
As far as JEEPS go, the Grand Cherokee redesign would be the LEAST of my worries.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: WK
From the DC Press Release:
" Front suspension wheel travel is increased by almost 10 percent over the previous generation vehicle, and a tight turning diameter of 37.1 ft. is tighter than the current Jeep Grand Cherokee to provide even more nimble handling.
"

Wheel travel is one of, if not the, most import measure of a vehicles off-road ability, that with overall gear ratio which has not changed from the previous models. So yes, everyone including DC is saying that the off-road capabilty is equal to or better than previous versions!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Humphrey
" And nobody ever said the new GC is LOSING any off-road capability, just GAINING on-road capability. "

Actually, everybody's said that. Including DC. It's now relegated to "best in class off-road performance." They have to qualify their boasts. It's better than a Mercedes or Lexus? Wow.

Obviously, off-roading is not the target but let's not pretend this luxobarge is as utilitarian as the old Wagoneer.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Mike
I think the new Grand Cherokee is a step in the right direction. While the current generation GC is off-road capable and decent on the street, let's face it, it's a jack of all trades, master of none. Nobody wants to spend $30,000+ on a luxury SUV just to tear it up on the trail, that is what the TJ is for. And nobody ever said the new GC is LOSING any off-road capability, just GAINING on-road capability. Also, while the current GC is at the pinacle of it's evolution, it can't compete on the high end, and is too expensive for the lower end. The GC either has to step it up a notch, or go down a couple pegs...In this case DC decided to move it up a notch.

My Ideal Jeep Lineup...
The Willys2 Concept meeting the TJ's capability...
A retro 'Willys' wagon/PU/SUT to take the place of the beloved Cherokee...
The next generation base model Wrangler starting out where the RUBICON left off, with Unlimited, DAKAR and 'BRUTE' variants...
The Liberty with a straight front axle option...
The GC and Commander as planned...
The Rescue Concept as-is (mabye UNIMOG-type portal axles)...
A JEEPSTER-type AWD convertible
Thats a 13 car lineup...Sounds like a luck number to me










Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: skramblewishes
Good point Jon.

When Renault bought AMC ( and Jeep along with it ) they brought us the Wrangler ( Upgraded from the CJ's ), Cherokee ( the first "small" four door SUV ), the Comanche and had the Grand Wagoneer in their line up.

When Chrysler bought AMC the Grand Wagoneer went away and so did the Comanche. Chrysler's contribution was the Grand Cherokee.

It seems to me that DC sees the potential for Jeep and is committed to adding new products to the line ( Scout, Commander, Unlimited and some sort of SUT ). Jeep's future is more secure under DC then it ever was under a stand alone Chrysler Corporation.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Jon
I agree with LGK. The Grand Wagoneer was very sucessful for for twenty years but yet it was not what I would call an rock-crawling off-roader.
That is what the CJ was for. The J-10 pickup was not exactly for rock-crawling either but more a work truck that had four-wheel drive capabilities.
I think that the new Grand Cherokee will do quite well, especially with them lowering the price somewhat( thanks DC).
I have to laugh at all these people that think DC is making all these "mistakes" and don't have a clue. They might not make a product for everyone but they did bring us the Unlimited, Rubicon and next year a seven passenger Jeep. If we are lucky the Rescue concept will be produced. If my math is correct, we will have more in the Jeep lineup to choose from than we have had over the last twenty years.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: TJmudder
I can't see myself ever owning a luxo-barge, but I see no problem with JEEP competing in that market. I hope they sell well, and I believe they will. The Hemi option alone will make them a hot commodity. As for me, and every die-hard Jeeper I know, a DAKAR with a strong diesel or V8 engine would be the ultimate family vehicle. It is hard for me to understand why DC came out with such an excellent concept, then dumped it and built the Libery. How hard would it be to add rear doors and a steel roof to the unlimited? They couldn't build them fast enough.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: JeepnVA
It's pretty clear now that DCX wants Jeep to compete in the very expensive market against vehicles like the Porsche Cayanne, VW Toureg, etc.

The mistake DCX is making is not realizing that consumers perceive ownership value even in features that they might not ever use. Like in a sturdy, capable SFA ste up in the Grande Cherokee for example.

Building a vehicle like the Dakar, which has this perceived value, would do a lot to maintain Jeeps image.

There needs to be Wrangler-based family of vehicles to go along with the high tech soft roader Liberty and Grand Cherokee. That means a Dakar, a Scrambler, and a AEV Brute style pick up to supplement the current line up.

An ideal Jeep lineup:

Wrangler
Unlimited
Scrambler
Brute PU
Dakar
Liberty
Liberty PU
Grand Cherokee
Rescue
Rescue PU

And some kind of Subaru WRX type rally car.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: comment
the glass is finally half full INSTEAD of half empty. every little bit helps...
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