The New Jeep Grand Cherokee

jeep-grand-cherokeeThe 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee is here and it features new exterior styling, new interior features and some interesting options as well and at a starting at $45,000 (plus dealer and on-road costs) for the Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo there’s going to be plenty of interest in Chrysler’s latest 4WD offering.

On the outside
The new body styling is designed to improve the Cherokee’s aerodynamics. The new design delivers an 8.5-percent improvement in drag compared with the previous model. The Grand Cherokee Coefficient of drag (Cd) is approximately 0.37 compared with the previous model’s Cd of 0.404.

The front includes Jeep’s classic seven-slot grille, round headlamps and trapezoidal wheel arches. The removable lower front fascia delivers improved fuel consumption, on-road performance and off-road capability. The lower front fascia features a large chromed appliqué on Limited and Overland models. Tow eyes are standard on all models.


Laredo features standard 18-inch wheels. Limited and Overland models feature standard 20-inch wheels.

Tail lamps wrap from the rear quarter panel to the back of the vehicle and create a solid form, which achieves more of an upscale appearance. The treatment complements the front-end design and resonates with the rest of the exterior.

Jeep Grand Cherokee models equipped with the 5.7-litre HEMI® V8 engine have 89mm dual chromed exhaust tips, and those with the V6 engine have a 76mm single exhaust (Laredo) or 89mm chromed tip (Limited).

The front and rear doors now have even wider openings and an all-new power rear liftgate is also available.

On the inside
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee now has more leg-room for passengers riding in the back seat – 981mm and, there’s an increase of 11 per cent in the cargo area available behind the rear seats. The rear cargo includes a storage unit with a rechargeable flashlight and new and improved baggage hooks on both sides. The spare tyre compartment includes removable dual storage bins for secure storage of muddy gear or other items.


Front seats have 8-way power adjustment with 4-way lumber adjustment and 4-way adjustable head restraints as standard and the rear seats recline a total of 12 degrees, with three lockable detents to make selection quick and easy. The 60/40 split fold seat back also features 12 degrees of forward adjustment to provide increased cargo carrying capacity without stowing the rear seat back

The instrument panel is completely redesigned and features soft-touch material with available contrast stitching that is carried throughout the interior, including seats. Soft-touch material is integrated not only on the instrument panel but on customer touch points including doors, consoles and armrests. By using softer materials, the Jeep design team was able to achieve fit and finish complimented by lower interior noise levels.


The all-new dual-pane sun roof is standard on Overland models and available on Limited. It provides twice as much glass surface than a standard sun roof and extends from the windshield to the rear of the vehicle. The front panel may be opened rearward, providing additional light and fresh air to first-row passengers. The rear panel, which is fixed, allows light and open viewing for second-row passengers and comes standard with a power sun shade.

The new Jeep Grand Cherokee comes with a choice of two engine options. The Pentastar 3.6-litre V6 is completely new while the 5.7-litre V8 is an improved version of the HEMI V8 found in the previous version.


Jeep Grand Cherokee features the first application of the all-new 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 engine. This all-new 3.6-litre V6 engine is standard on the Grand Cherokee and features an all-new design with dual double overhead camshafts (DOHC) and a high-pressure die-cast aluminium cylinder block in a 60-degree configuration.

It features Quad Variable-valve Timing (VVT) and delivers 210 kW of power at 6,350 rpm and 347 Nm of torque at 4,300 rpm, providing customers more than a 10-percent improvement in fuel consumption. This engine will run on ethanol blends up to E85.

It is coupled with the proven W5A580 five-speed automatic transmission that delivers smooth shifts and optimum fuel consumption. The five-speed W5A580 transmission includes adaptive electronic control or Electronic Range Select (ERS) driver-interactive manual control and an electronically modulated torque converter clutch.

The new Grand Cherokee offers trailer tow capability of up to 2,268kg on models equipped with the Pentastar V6 engine.

The 2011 Grand Cherokee is also available with the legendary 5.7-litre HEMI® V8 engine. Featuring VVT, it delivers 259 kW of power at 5,200 rpm and 520 Nm of torque at 4,200 rpm.

The 5.7-litre engine’s fuel-saving Multi-Displacement System (MDS) seamlessly alternates between smooth, efficient four-cylinder mode when less power is needed and V8 mode when more power is in demand. This optimises fuel consumption when V8 power is not required, without sacrificing vehicle performance or capability.

The Grand Cherokee offers unsurpassed trailer tow capability of up to 3,500kg when equipped with the 5.7-litre V8 engine.

Fuel consumption figures weren’t provided with the press release from Chrysler.


The Grand Cherokee offers the new Quadra-Lift air suspension system that provides a total of 104mm of lift adjustment. Quadra-Lift operates automatically or may be controlled manually via console controls.

Quadra-Lift is supported by four-corner air springs featuring five height settings for optimum ride performance:

  • Normal Ride Height (NRH): 205mm of clearance offers improved fuel consumption and improved aerodynamics during on-road driving
  • Off Road 1: Lifts the vehicle an additional 33mm to 238mm for added height in clearing obstacles
  • Off Road 2: Delivers legendary Jeep off-road capability and provides an additional 66mm over NRH for 271mm of ground clearance
  • Park Mode: Lowers the vehicle 38mm from NRH for easy ingress/egress and roof rack loading. NRH and Park mode are driver-selectable, giving the driver control over vehicle ride height
  • Aero Mode: Lowers the vehicle 13mm from NRH. Aero Mode is controlled by vehicle speed and adjusts for optimal performance and fuel consumption

With the front air dam removed and the available Quadra-Lift air suspension set to Off Road 2 mode, the all-new Jeep Grand Cherokee features a 34.3-degree approach angle, a 27.3-degree (to rear recovery tow hook) departure angle and a 23.1-degree breakover angle.


Going off-road
The Jeep Grand Cherokee will offer two 4×4 systems in Australia: Quadra-Trac II and Quadra-Drive II.

Quadra-Trac II’s two-speed transfer case uses input from a variety of sensors in order to determine tyre slip at the earliest possible moment and take corrective action. The system uses Throttle Anticipate to sense quick movement in the throttle from a stop and maximises traction before slippage occurs. When tyre slippage is detected, as much as 100 percent of available torque is instantly routed to the axle with the most traction.

Quadra-Drive II, with a rear Electronic Limited-slip Differential (ELSD), delivers industry-leading tractive capability. The system instantly detects tyre slip and smoothly distributes engine torque to tyres with traction. In some cases, the vehicle will anticipate low traction and adjust in order to proactively limit or eliminate slip.

Selec-Terrain: In addition to the Quadra-Lift air suspension, the all-new Selec-Terrain traction control system lets customers choose the setting for the optimum experience on all types of terrain. This feature electronically coordinates up to 12 different powertrain, braking and suspension systems, including throttle control, transmission shift, transfer case, Traction Control and Electronic Stability Control (ESC).

The Selec-Terrain control dial allows the driver to choose from five driving conditions in order to achieve the best driving experience:

  • Snow: Vehicle traction adjusts for ultimate performance over snow-covered roads
  • Sport: Provides enhanced on-road “fun-to-drive” capability
  • Auto: Automatically adapts to any on- or off-road situation
  • Sand/Mud: Traction Control and Quadra-Lift operate with sensitive response to wheel spin and torque is tuned for optimal performance
  • Rock: Quadra-Lift suspension raises to a maximum height of 271mm and the transfer case, differentials and throttle coordinate to provide low-speed control

Selec-Terrain, coupled with the all-new Quadra-Lift air suspension, offers drivers an adjustable suspension span that delivers world-class capability. Selec-Terrain is standard with Quadra-Trac II and Quadra-Drive II.

Standard safety features include Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Electronic Roll Mitigation (ERM), four-wheel Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) with rough-road detection, All-speed Traction Control (ASTC), Trailer-sway Control (TSC), Keyless Enter-N-Go (passive entry/pushbutton start), remote keyless entry, express up/down windows for driver and front-seat passenger seat-belt pretensioners.

Other standard safety features include next generation air bags that enhance protection for the driver and front passenger, full-length side-curtain air bags that extend protection to front and rear outboard passengers, seat-mounted side thorax air bags that enhance protection for the driver and front passenger, standard driver inflatable knee bolster and active head restraints that deploy in the event of a rear collision.


As mentioned earlier the starting price for a Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 3.6-litre V6 5-speed automatic … the base model … is $45,000 plus dealer and government charges. There are plenty of options available to take that figure way beyond $45k.

The next step up is the Grand Cherokee Limited … the 3.6-litre V6 5-speed automatic will set you back $55,000 plus dealer and government charges and you can add another $5,000 to that price for the V8 version. Again there are plenty of options to take that price up.

At the top of the tree is the Grand Cherokee Overland. It comes with a much higher equipment level and the 5.7-litre V8 5-speed automatic as standard for $69,500 plus dealer and government charges.

Equipment levels

  • Advanced multi-stage driver and front-passenger, front seat mounted side, side-curtain air bags and drivers knee-bolster air bag
  • 4-wheel disc with anti-lock brake system (ABS)
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with Brake Assist, All-speed Traction Control (ASTC), Electronic Roll Mitigation (ERM), Rain brake support, Ready alert braking and Trailer Sway Control (TSC)
  • Sentry Key® anti-theft engine immobiliser
  • Dual-zone automatic temperature control (ATC) with air filtration system
  • Media Centre 431 CD/DVD/HDD radio with 16.5 cm touch screen, 30GB hard drive (6,700 song capacity), Voice Command and Audio Jack
  • 6-speaker audio system (Laredo) or Alpine® premium audio system with 9-speakers plus subwoofer and 506- watt amplifier (Limited)
  • 18-inch polished aluminium wheels (std Laredo)
  • 20-inch painted aluminium wheels (std Limited and Overland)
  • Tyre Pressure Monitoring (TPM) systems
  • Electronic Vehicle Information Centre (EVIC)
  • Bright side roof rails
  • Quadra-Trac® II or Quadra-Drive® II four-wheel drive system (std on Overland)
  • Hill Descent Control (HDC) and Hill Start Assist (HSA)
  • Selec-Terrain™ system
The New Jeep Grand Cherokee
Scroll to top