Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit Reserve 4xe overview: it is a PHEV, however is it additionally the true factor?

We consider Jeep as a heritage, conventional model. But it surely’s all the time tried to maneuver with the instances. It’s all about hard-core 4×4 automobiles in fact, however Jeep diversified into crossover-type SUVs way back to 2006 with the Patriot and Compass.

It’s continued to take action with the likes of the lovable Renegade (based mostly on a shared platform with fellow Stellantis model Fiat) and there’s even a front-drive pure-electric city SUV on the best way referred to as Avenger, which owes quite a bit to Peugeot, Citroen and Opel EVs (all additionally Stellantis).

It is a roundabout means of claiming there are Jeeps… after which there are Jeeps. The corporate has all the time been conscious of broadening the model, however equally very protecting of its “actual” 4×4 automobiles like Wrangler and Grand Cherokee (or GC, which is what the cool children name it).

That philosophy is as true of its new electrical fashions as any. Jeep has simply launched a variety of 4xe (“4 by electrical”) plug-in hybrid electrical automobiles (PHEV) in New Zealand, together with a Renegade, Compass and GC.

And sure, the 4xe crossovers are nonetheless very completely different to the Grand. Renegade and Compass have a cut up 4WD powertrain the place the petrol engine drives the entrance and the electrical motor the rear. Intelligent, however not all the time AWD.

The GC would possibly share its 4xe badge with these smaller SUVs, however its powertrain works very otherwise.

There’s a 2.0-litre turbo engine up entrance and a big(ish) 17kWh plug-in battery; up to now, so good.

However right here’s the distinction: the principle electrical propulsion motor is just not connected to an axle, however fitted in between the engine and eight-speed gearbox, that means the GC 4xe drives like a traditional petrol automobile (with gears and all the pieces).

So you possibly can drive it as a correct 4×4 off-road even in EV mode, which is the true level of Jeep going to such lengths to completely combine the electrical bits with the petrol powertrain. It additionally comes with essentially the most refined model of Jeep’s off-road {hardware} obtainable in NZ: Quadra-Trac II with 4×4 low/lock and air suspension.

It needs to be no shock that it is a related system to the electrical model of Jeep’s hero mannequin, the Wrangler 4xe (though that’s not but obtainable in NZ).

The GC 4xe is just obtainable in flagship Summit Reserve specification in NZ. Even making an allowance for it’s essentially the most highly effective model you should purchase, with a heady 280kW/637Nm mixed, it does come at an enormous price: $154,990, which actually is luxury-SUV cash. Luxurious SUV-BEV cash, really.

It’s nicely atop the remainder of the vary; there are Evening Eagle, Restricted and Overland fashions from $92,990-$112,990, all nonetheless with the aged 3.6-litre V6 petrol engine.

There’s no Summit Reserve V6 five-seater to immediately examine the 4xe with. However there’s nonetheless a Summit Reserve L (long-wheelbase) V6 seven-seater on the books and that’s a whopping $25k cheaper, though it has the identical luxurious inside specification and it’s the identical dimension as a modest residence.

In case you can swallow the worth, the Grand 4xe is an superior premium SUV. Would you actually need to take this flagship GC off-road and scrape it alongside some rocks? Most likely not, however the level is you possibly can.

It has a big battery for a PHEV, however it’s a very giant automobile (round 400kg heavier than an Overland V6!). It’s AC-only, so it could take some charging: an entire in a single day session on a three-pin plug at house, and even on a wallbox you’re three hours. DC charging potential would make an enormous distinction (Land Rover PHEVs all have it).

Jeep claims 52km EV vary; we persistently received within the 40km bracket with a good mixture of city and motorway working. Not headline numbers, however it does work fantastically as an electrical automobile, particularly with the eight-speed gearbox doing its factor.

You may prioritise Electrical, go for Hybrid and even select the extent to Save at, utilizing the engine to cost the battery to that share – all with a easy pushbutton menu. Nice in idea, however sadly the controls are buried on the backside of the dashboard the place you possibly can’t actually see them. The smaller Compass – a a lot older design – has the identical menus, however the buttons are on the centre console, inside straightforward attain.

It’s genuinely fast in Hybrid/Sport mode and naturally the air suspension permits you to tailor the chassis character considerably. However as a street automobile that is unashamedly a luxurious expertise. It rolls in corners however it’s managed and all the time serene; even with the petrol engine working on the motorway, it’s impressively quiet and refined. Put your foot down and you may hear the raspy four-cylinder engine doing its factor, however it’s fairly an fascinating soundtrack for a GC.

We’ve bored you at size already in regards to the high quality and gear of the GC Summit Reserve in our overview of the L mannequin: scrumptious Palermo leather-based, open-pore wooden in every single place (like if a automotive was a boutique lodge), therapeutic massage seats and four-zone local weather management.

Our automotive additionally had the Superior Know-how Group possibility pack, together with a head-up show, wi-fi charging pad (nice thought, because the cellphone projection is wi-fi), pedestrian/animal detection for the auto-braking, a novel passenger-side infotainment show (they’ll watch films or ship navigation requests to the driving force, for instance) and a formidable evening imaginative and prescient operate. All good stuff, though it provides $6k to the worth, that means this GC cracks $160k. Gulp.

You might need bother accepting such a value for what’s generally perceived as a mainstream stars-and-bars SUV. However few different automobiles provide something like this mixture of high quality, luxurious, Clear Credentials and true 4×4 potential. Land Rover/Vary Rover perhaps… it’s good firm.

The newest GC was deeply spectacular proper from the beginning and solely the gruff, thirsty petrol V6 engine let it down. The 4xe PHEV powertrain fixes that and provides Jeep’s flagship Grand the trendy character it deserves.

ENGINE: 2.0-litre turbo-petrol 4 with plug-in 17kWh battery and twin electrical motors
POWER: 280kW/637Nm (mixed)
GEARBOX: 8-speed computerized, AWD with low-range switch
CONSUMPTION: 3.2l/100km (Mixed), CO2 74g/km, EV vary 52km
PRICE: $154,990

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