When it comes to adventurous cars, there is nothing that takes you the distance quite like the Jeep Cherokee. For almost 50 years the Jeep brand has been innovating this one-of-a-kind, off-road vehicle, though the core values of the machine have not changed a bit. The Jeep Cherokee is among the few cars in the world that embodies a specific lifestyle, but what makes it so iconic?
A History of the Jeep Cherokee
The Jeep Cherokee was originally sold as a separate variety of Jeep Wagoneer. It was first debuted in 1974 as a two-door sport utility vehicle. Only a few years later did they add the four-door model. Throughout the years, it has evolved from a sport utility vehicle to a full-size SUV, and finally, one of the first compact SUVs the automobile industry had ever seen.
Technology and Innovations of the Jeep Cherokee – the Vehicle of Freedom
The modern 2019 Jeep Cherokee is more of a compact SUV, though it still sports the proper design needed for off-road adventures. It comes with improved LED head and tail lights, a state-of-the-art interior system complete with Uconnect technology, and a 4WD Active Drive II 2.0L turbocharged engine for power. It has a towing capacity of 2,000lbs for those looking to haul equipment as well.
A Timeline of the Jeep Cherokee
- First Generation Jeep Cherokee (1970-1984)
Jeep introduced the very first full 4×4 system in the 1970s with the Cherokee SJ. This sport utility vehicle boasted a two-door design, though they finally added a four-door design in 1977. There were an array of trim levels, including Chief, Golden Eagle, Limited, Classic, and more.
- Second Generation Jeep Cherokee (1984-2001)
The second-generation Jeep Cherokee XJ moved to a new lightweight unibody design and was known as the “innovator of the modern SUV.” The 1980s marked the introduction of the popular Jeep Grand Cherokee thanks to the popularity of the car.
- Third Generation Jeep Cherokee (2001-2008)
The third-generation Jeep Cherokee KJ was the smallest four-door SUV in the Jeep line for quite some time. It had the same unibody construction, though it used rack and pinion steering as well as a new PowerTech engine with 150 horsepower.
- Fourth Generation Jeep Cherokee (2008-2013)
The fourth-generation Jeep Cherokee KK was the first time the company dropped the four-cylinder engine. In 2008, a V6 engine was the only one available, and the towing capacity had moved to 5,000lbs. Some of the equipment onboard included traction control, electronic stability control, Bluetooth, a navigation system, and a MyGig entertainment system.
- Fifth Generation Jeep Cherokee (20013-Present)
The fifth-generation Jeep Cherokee KL was the first Jeep built on a Fiat compact platform, as it was developed by Fiat and Chrysler together. It was the first Jeep to focus on fuel economy with a 45% better rating than the previous model.
The Jeep Cherokee in the News
Jeep is now recalling its 2014 Cherokee models thanks to a software problem that is causing the transmission to shift into neutral without warning. “This dangerous software glitch could lead to serious accidents,” say experts. This issue is only happening among 3.2L V6 2014 models.
Jeep Cherokee Celebrity Endorsements
Because it’s the forefront of Jeep models, there are many celebrities that own Cherokees. One very proud owner of a Jeep Cherokee is Tony Hawk, who uses a Grand Cherokee SRT8 as his daily driver.
The Jeep Cherokee – the Vehicle Built for Adventure
The Jeep Cherokee is undoubtedly the most iconic adventure vehicle of all time. With decades of innovations under the hood and a design that is unmatched for fun and freedom, we can confidently assume the Cherokee is here to stay.