September 3, 2007,
Auburn Hills, Mich.
The new Jeep®
Grand Cherokee, on display at the 2007 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt, displays multiple enhancements to the best-selling Jeep nameplate. New for this year is an extremely advanced and flexible Hill Descent Control system for greatly improved control in off-road situations; a new Hill Start Assist system holds the vehicle automatically on steep hills for a smooth and controlled drive away from a stop; and Trailer Sway Control that minimises trailer sway during towing. The new Grand Cherokee also features a new 4.7-litre V-8 engine that delivers an improvement in fuel economy of more than 6 per cent, with a 30 per cent increase in horsepower and an 8 per cent increase in torque. The interior and exterior design is restyled, and the new Grand Cherokee also features a host of innovative, premium amenities.
“With the addition of a Jeep-engineered Hill Descent Control, a choice of five engines, two four-wheel-drive systems and more premium amenities than ever before, the new Jeep Grand Cherokee adds more capability and refinement to the benchmark full-size SUV that created the luxury SUV market when it debuted in 1992,” said Thomas Hausch, Vice President, International Sales – Chrysler.
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee will begin to arrive in dealerships outside North America by the end of 2007.
Jeep-engineered Hill Descent Control
Jeep engineering designed the Hill Descent Control system to mimic the downhill control and flexibility afforded by the ultra-low gearing found in a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon with its 4:1 ratio transfer case and six-speed manual transmission. This gearing provides for six speeds of controlled hill descent.
Operational in the 4WD Low position, Hill Descent Control provides downhill assistance at a controlled rate of speed with more precision and smoother operation than simply using the brakes. By means of electronic brake control, Hill Descent Control supplements the gear reduction and engine braking that a traditional mechanical low-range transfer case provides. Unlike most of its competitors, the new Jeep Grand Cherokee with Hill Descent Control offers extremely smooth transitions between speeds and allows the driver to use the throttle and brakes without turning the system off, with a smooth and controlled return to the preset speed after the driver releases the throttle or brakes.
In the Jeep Grand Cherokee, once Hill Descent Control is activated with a push of a button in the centre stack, preset speeds can be selected by using the transmission shifter. For ease of operation, after the Hill Descent Control button is engaged, Grand Cherokee’s Hill Descent Control is activated and deactivated automatically, as the system senses changes in topography. The system works whether the vehicle is driven in forward or reverse.
The preset maximum speeds are:
1st gear: 1.6 km/h
2nd gear: 4 km/h
3rd gear: 6 km/h
4th gear: 9 km/h
5th gear or D: 12 km/h
Reverse (R): 1.6 km/h
Neutral (N): 4 km/h
Hill Descent Control was engineered to provide the smoothest transitions possible, even from a complete stop on extremely steep and slippery surfaces.
Hill Descent Control is standard on all Jeep Grand Cherokee models except SRT8.
Hill Start Assist
The Hill Start Assist system provides the driver time to transition from brake to throttle to achieve a smooth launch on a grade. The system will hold brake pressure for two seconds upon the driver’s release of the brake pedal. The Hill Start Assist system decreases wheel pressure in response to increasing throttle to provide a smooth launch. This system is extremely helpful when driving in urban as well as off-road areas with steep hills.
Hill Start Assist is standard on all Jeep Grand Cherokee models except SRT8.
Trailer Sway Control
Trailer Sway Control minimises trailer sway (an alternating yaw of the vehicle) and improves handling in adverse towing conditions caused by crosswinds and traffic, provides trailer stability and increases towing safety.
Sensors monitor the vehicle’s movement relative to the driver’s intended path. The vehicle yaw sensor recognises sway. Once the system determines the sway is increasing and is not a result of the driver’s steering input, Trailer Sway Control applies brake pressure on one front wheel to counteract the yaw induced by the trailer and smoothly applies brake pressure to the other wheels to slow the vehicle. As the trailer sways to the other side of the vehicle, Trailer Sway Control will increase pressure to the opposite side of the vehicle. The technology will continue to apply alternating brake pressure and reduce engine torque until the trailer sway is under control.
Trailer Sway Control is included with the optional Trailer Tow Group.
Five Engine Offerings
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee comes with a choice of five engine offerings:
- Award-winning 3.0-litre V-6 common-rail turbo diesel engine – available on Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited and Overland
- 3.7-litre V-6 petrol engine – standard on Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo
- New 4.7-litre V-8 petrol engine – standard on Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
- 5.7-litre V-8 HEMI® petrol engine – available on Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited, standard on Overland
- 6.1-litre HEMI V-8 petrol engine – standard on Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8
The new 4.7-litre V-8 petrol engine is more than 5 per cent better regarding fuel economy while increasing power and torque compared to the previous 4.7-litre engine. The new engine incorporates two spark plugs per cylinder (the only Chrysler engine to do so, other than the 5.7-litre HEMI), increased compression ratio, improved cylinder-head port flow, and revised combustion chamber, valvetrain and camshaft profile. The result is 223 kW (303 hp DIN), a 30 per cent increase, and 445 Nm (328 lb.-ft.) of torque, an 8 per cent increase over the previous 4.7-litre V-8 engine.
The new 4.7-litre V-8 engine also offers refinements, primarily from significant revisions to the induction system and reduced accessory-drive noise through lower accessory-drive speed. Engine smoothness at idle is enhanced with a new camshaft design, two spark plugs per cylinder and a revised valve-lash adjuster system.
Innovative Premium Amenities
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee includes a variety of premium amenities that are new, including the MyGIG™ Multimedia Infotainment System that has a built-in navigation, audio, entertainment and communication system. MyGIG enables customers to use touch-screen or voice commands to control all of the features, and includes a 20-gigabyte hard drive where music and photos can be stored. There is space reserved on the hard drive for approximately 1,600 songs; that is over 100 hours of music. There also is a voice-memo recorder feature.
Also new on the Jeep Grand Cherokee are High-intensity Discharge (HID) auto-levelling headlamps. HID headlamps provide approximately three times the light output of conventional reflector lamps for improved night-time illumination. The auto-levelling feature automatically adjusts the headlamps to the vehicle pitch depending on the load and number of passengers in the vehicle. This feature also benefits oncoming traffic as the system prevents drivers from being distracted by glare from the headlamps. The auto-levelling feature is only available with HID headlamps.
ParkView™ Rear Back-up Camera (with or without navigation), ParkSense® Rear Back-up System, rain-sensing wipers, memory seats and mirrors, iPod® connectivity and 18-inch aluminium wheels also are part of the vehicle’s available features. (iPod is a trademark of Apple Computer, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.)
New Exterior and Interior Design
With its upright and substantial posture, the Jeep Grand Cherokee’s design offers an athletic and contemporary appearance. The grille has been lengthened, and the headlamps are more circular for a more dominant and expressive front view. New HID headlamps, optional on Limited and standard on Overland, include an internal optic lens for the park/turn function. Fog lamps also have also been repositioned for enhanced performance. Off-road enthusiasts will be pleased with the new two-piece front fascia, allowing for the entire lower piece to be removed before hitting the off-road trails.
On the inside, the vehicle's two-tone instrument panel features a new level of refinement with bright accents, a soft-touch surface and updated styling. A new tilt and telescoping steering column is standard, with a new steering wheel that includes bright accent bezels, which house the Electronic Vehicle Information Centre’s switches. The Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited model’s steering wheel adds two-tone leather and bright chrome accent rings, and the Overland features a real wood rim for added luxury.
Also new is the updated line of instrument clusters that feature new brighter LED illumination, with the Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited and Overland models receiving a modern and elegant treatment where, when the vehicle is started, the dark-tinted lens fades to reveal chrome-ringed black gauges that are surrounded by a bright silver accent field. The new floor console has improved cup holders, and the Limited and Overland models get a new leather-wrapped and chrome-accented parking brake handle. The door panels have new armrests for improved ergonomics and comfort. New for the Overland model are the new Dark Slate Grey perforated leather seats that feature accent piping for an even more upscale look.
The heroic heritage of the Jeep brand and its dominance of the SUV market stretch back more than 65 years, and still today, Jeep continues to deliver on its promise to provide versatile, innovative four-wheel-drive vehicles. The Jeep brand is known worldwide for its core values of mastery, authenticity, freedom and adventure.
Jeep brand vehicle sales outside North America in 2007 have increased 13 per cent to 54,068 units, compared with sales in 2006 (through July). Two of the top-five best-selling Chrysler vehicles outside North America are Jeep models: the Jeep Grand Cherokee is a close second, and the Jeep Cherokee is number five.