2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8: Torque And Trans
February 20, 2013
The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee will be available later this year. New headlights align it with the Chrysler family look and it gets a new eight-speed transmission. But the biggest buzz is a new 3.0-liter diesel V6 option. The new Italian-built diesel makes 420 pound-feet of torque at 2,000 rpm and Jeep says the Grand Cherokee diesel can travel 730 miles and tow up to 7,400 pounds.
Our SRT8 makes 465 lb-ft at 4,300 rpm, tows up to 5,000 pounds and we're averaging 14 mpg combined in our travels. Jeep hasn't announced an EPA-estimated combined MPG spec yet, but the marketing department is pretty happy with the 4x2 diesel's 30 mpg highway mpg.
For 2014, the JCG SRT has dropped the "8" from its name but ironically adds an eight-speed transmission, an optional 8-inch touchscreen display and increased towing capacity (now 7,200 pounds).
Obviously not apples to apples, but is 420 lb-ft of early twist enough to sway you away from 470 V8 horsepower? Not to mention the extra $20,000 in your pocket? The SRT8 is a thrill, no question, no debate. But a more mortal Cherokee with loads of torque is also an exciting prospect.
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor @ 20,080 miles