Cherokee vs Grand Cherokee: Which One is Right for you?

April 17th, 2019 by

History will argue that the original Jeep Cherokee was the first vehicle to be marketed as a family-friendly machine with more than a regular dose of off-road capability. Nowadays, what came to be known as the SUV segment makes up a large chunk of the North American market. It was only ten years after the Cherokee made its first appearance that Jeep revolutionized the segment once more with the arrival of the Grand Cherokee. An instant hit with customers, the Grand Cherokee offered a spacious interior with luxury trims and off-road grunt.

For 2019 both models offer a wide selection of engines and trim levels and boast advances that make any Jeep vehicle a wise choice. Both the Cherokee and the Grand Cherokee offer enough features to attract a wide variety of clientele, but for those that are still undecided we break down the features of each. Here’s what prospective buyers who are considering either of these vehicles should take note of.


There’s an all-new 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four engine that’s joining the ranks of what’s under the hood of the 2019 Cherokee. Besides the new addition, what customarily rests under the hood of the Cherokee is a 3.2-liter Pentastar V6 engine. Regardless of engine choice, the Cherokee offers a nine-speed automatic transmission across its lineup. When it comes to the Grand Cherokee the brand offers no less than five engines total, running the gamut from a classic V6 to a fire-breathing supercharged V8. The 2019 Grand Cherokee offers a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 as the standard, but buyers can opt for a 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6, a 5.7-liter HEMI V8, an even larger 6.4-liter HEMI V8, and a supercharged 6.2-liter V8. All Grand Cherokee engines are mated to a TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission.

Off-Road Power:

The 2019 Cherokee offers buyers a choice between three different 4×4 setups – Jeep Active Drive I and II, and the Jeep Active Drive Lock. The Jeep Active Drive I system features a fully disconnecting 4×2 mode with automatic 4×4 engagement, while the Active Drive II system unlocks electronic 4×4 LOW. Jeep Active Drive Lock offers a full-time four-wheel-drive mode complete with an active on-demand clutch and comes standard on the Trailhawk trim. The Grand Cherokee takes off-roading prowess seriously as well, evidenced by the four different 4×4 systems available – Quadra-Trac I and II, Quadra-Drive II and Quadra-Trac Active.  All of these are full-time 4×4 systems and are available on a variable scale to match the respective engine under the hood.


Every new 2019 Cherokee includes goodies such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, with the smallest infotainment display an impressive 7-inch touchscreen. There’s even a customizable menu bar that allows owners to customize their in-car experience.  The 2019 Grand Cherokee also offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity along with an even larger 8.4-inch touchscreen display. There’s also a powerful 19-speaker Harman/Kardon sound system available as an upgrade on the higher trims. Advanced safety features such as adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist are some of the sample features available on the Safety Package, while the SRT and Trackhawk trims even offer a quintet of driving modes that activate automatically given the driving conditions.

Design & Style:

The 2019 Cherokee features a few changes thanks to a major restyling of its signature components. There’s a new front end that’s completely in line with the rest of the Jeep lineup, while a lightweight hood peeps out over LED headlamps that no longer look like the older models with the slim lights. Engineers have also corrected the older model’s appearance so the 2019 Cherokee has an appropriate wheel to body ratio that lends to its aggressive design.

The Grand Cherokee’s exterior design also features an aggressive design albeit with softer lines. Buyers can opt for available bi-xenon headlamps that add a premium luxurious look on the high-tier trims. The most aggressive trims in the lineup are of course the performance-oriented SRT and Trackhawk models with an exterior design that optimizes airflow and works simultaneously to cool the engine. On the Trackhawk trim there are a few unique Gloss Black background accents that give the headlamps a jewel-like appearance.

As the Cherokee offers buyers a fresh face for 2019, the Grand Cherokee offers additional space for those who need it. Both SUVs are more than capable of hauling the family and venturing off the beaten path, so it all comes down to a personal choice. Explore the Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee inventory at Hollywood Chrysler Jeep. If you’ve got any other questions or are having a hard time choosing between these two awesome vehicles, The Jeep Experts at Hollywood Chrysler Jeep are more than willing to help. Schedule your test drive today!

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