Spy photos have emerged of Jeep’s facelift of arguably their most ugly model, the Cherokee. Some might disagree, but to me (and perhaps the majority of people, while I admire the Cherokee for its strength, performance and off-road abilities, I’d never go for one because no matter how it looks. Take one look at the heavy body camo in the photo above, and you’d think ‘Great, let’s hope they get the styling right this time’, but sadly, you might be disappointed…
The camo doesn’t allow much to be seen, or speculated on, but there doesn’t appear to be much sign of any significant work at the front end – reportedly it’ll be sporting a redesigned grille. The busy looking rear end, meanwhile, will apparently have a wider tailgate. Expect some drive line updates, too.
Wider front and rear tracks are likely, but more exciting are the rumours that Jeep is working on a high-performance Trackhawk variant of the Cherokee, powered by either a high-output four-cylinder turbo, or a larger capacity V6. Think along the lines of Audi’s SQ5 or Mercedes-AMG’s soon to be released GLC and you might be on the right track. There’s also speculation that a new 2.4 litre non-turbo four-cylinder engine is on the way.
Additionally, it is being reported that the 2017 Jeep Cherokee will also receive retuned steering and suspension components, as well as an upgraded noise/vibration/harshness package to help make it both more dynamic and refined.
The current model’s styling doesn’t seem to have put many people off the car – with the 4249 Cherokee’s finding homes since it was launched here last year. It may not be as popular as Mazda’s CX-5, Nissan’s X-Trail or Holden’s Captiva, but it is a far better number than the 625 units Jeep sold of the previous generation Cherokee sold over the same period last year.
This facelifted Cherokee is expected to appear in the US market early 2016, with the Australian launch following in the latter half of the year.