What's the news?
The new Jeep Cherokee made its debut at the Detroit Auto Show this week, marking a largely aesthetic revamp for a model that has seen rapidly falling sales in recent years.
The controversial styling of the previous model has been softened somewhat, the most notable difference being the front-end with bigger new LED headlamps that now incorporate the daytime running lights. The bonnet and front fascia have been freshened-up too and the effect is an overall improvement in looks. The rear-end has seen some work with revised lights and a new, hands-free, lightweight tailgate.
The interior has seen some attention in the new Jeep Cherokee, too, with high-gloss Piano Black and Satin Chrome accents. It also features the FCA Group's latest Uconnect infotainment system, which handles the navigation, entertainment and communication and works with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. There are of 7.0 or 8.4-inch touchscreens with pinch and zoom capability, depending on version.
Of course a Jeep wouldn't be a Jeep if it couldn't handle itself off-road and it'll come with three four-wheel-drive options. Jeep Active Drive I is an all-new automatic system that will come as standard on the Cherokee that only engages the rear wheels when needed, giving benefits in terms of fuel economy. Active Drive II and Active Drive Lock are optional systems for tougher off-roading and will include things like a raised ride-height as well as locking driveshafts and differentials.
There's no word yet on pricing and we don't know which models of Cherokee will be making it to Europe, although it will face stiff premium SUV competition from the likes of the Land Rover Discovery Sport. The new Cherokee is expected to hit showrooms in the US in the first quarter of 2018 with European sales beginning in the latter half of the year.