2019 Jeep Cherokee - First Look at a New Face

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Hot on the heels of a vehicle reveal most of us thought would occur in Detroit next month, another hot seller has officially broken cover before the January show.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has given the Jeep Cherokee a snazzy new set of duds just in time for the new year. Previously styled with an alarming mix of narrowed lights and Hannibal Lecter grille, the restyled 2019 Cherokee adopts the corporate look that first appeared on the Grandest of Cherokees before migrating to the Compass last year.

Up front, the 2019 Jeep Cherokee now sports a fascia more in line with the Jeep family. A set of headlights that ape the Grand Cherokee and Compass bookend a traditional seven-slat grille. The red Cherokee, likely a Trailhawk trim, is shown with natty red tow hooks and beefy tires. Fog lights appear on the outer edges of the front bumper and the mandatory JEEP billboard is present front and centre of the hood’s leading edge. It is a much more cohesive look than the current model.

Around back, a dramatic character line cuts a diagonal path from the hatchback glass down to the rear wheelwell. Its tail lights are more in line with the rest of the Jeep family, and twin chrome exhaust finishers poke out of the rear bumper on the silver model shown here. The license plate has migrated from the bumper to the hatch surface, filling a space that always looked a bit blank to this author’s jaundiced eye.

Jeep promises “even more fuel-efficient powertrain options” in the 2019 Cherokee, which could mean anything from improved economy numbers for the existing engines or something new under the hood altogether. We know the 2019 model stand to gain the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder found in 2018 Wrangler, mated to a 48-volt mild hybrid system.

Presently, the Cherokee is available with a 2.4-liter MultiAir inline-four or a 3.2-liter V6. Nine-speed automatics appear across the board. Improved fuel economy numbers could also be achieved through different programming of the ZF ‘box as well.

The 2018 Cherokee starts at $24,395 for a two-wheel drive Latitude model before climbing through the ranks to a $37,340 4×4 Overland model — which this author believes should be painted green and called the Orvis (*looks longingly at old ZJ brochures*). Expect a slight price bump in the new year but nothing like the $3,000 hike in MSRP Jeep slapped on the JL Wrangler.

Cherokee sales have been on the wane since hitting a peak of 220,260 units in 2015. Year-to-date, the flinty-eyed edition currently on sale has found 150,524 new driveways in which to inhabit. It’s worth noting that Compass sales went up 50 percent after its restyle, which brought a handsome look not unlike this new Cherokee. Yes, part of that is due to customers migrating from the departed Patriot, but the new styling undoubtedly helped a bit as well. It’ll help the Cherokee too, methinks.

Jeep says more information will be released on January 16th, 2018, at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. TTAC will have several of our writers on the show floor to bring you all the details.

[Images: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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4 of 38 comments
  • Crtfour Crtfour on Dec 19, 2017

    What is the real difference among this, the Compass, and the Patriot? If you’re going to have a crappy one as part of your lineup, why not have just one instead of three?

    • See 1 previous
    • JohnTaurus JohnTaurus on Dec 20, 2017

      One difference is the Patriot, based on an ancient platform, is no longer in production. Between this and the new Compass, Gtem nailed it.

  • Looking good.

  • Lou_BC Ironic, the Honda Ridgeline, a truck that every truck guy loves to hate is in 6th place.
  • 28-Cars-Later I keep forgetting I own it, but the space look on the ext cab reminds me of my 'Yota pickup of the same model year. I'm pretty sure there is some vintage of Hilux which features the same looking ext cab window (maybe '88?) its a shame these things are mostly gone and when available are $1,000,000,000 [INSERT CURRENT CURRENCY].
  • Sayahh Imagine if Ford had Toyota design and build a Mustang engine. It will last over 300k miles! (Skip turbo and make it naturally aspirated.) Maybe Yamaha will help tune it...
  • Sobhuza Trooper Isuzu's crime was to build some damn good trucks.Shame on them.
  • El scotto Listen, unless you were Lord Headly-Stempmoor or such when you got off the off the boat, boot in Canada, you got the short end of the stick. People got on the boat, these days a plane, to escape famine, becoming cannon fodder in yet another stupid war, or the government thought it was A-OK to let soldiers kill you. Juneteenth is just a way to right one of the more bad ideas in the American experiment. Instead we have commenters who were buying tater chips and diet soda at Wal-Mart and got all butt-hurt because they heard someone who wasn't speaking English. I'm going to go fix a couple of frankfurters with salsa and guacamole and wash them down with a lager or three