2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee preview

Although it hasn’t changed much since its debut in 2009, Jeep’s Grand Cherokee remains one of the best options for buyers seeking a solid, mid-size SUV with off-roading credentials.

The Grand Cherokee is also one of the quickest off-roaders around thanks to its SRT model.

It’s only real downside is that it’s limited to five seats whereas some rivals have additional, third-row seats.

For the 2017 model year, Jeep has expanded the lineup to six separate models. They include the Laredo, Limited, Trailhawk, Overland, Summit and the aforementioned SRT.

The Trailhawk and Summit are new for 2017 and made their debut in March at the 2016 New York auto show. The Trailhawk is aimed at buyers seeking extra off-road capability while the Summit is for those that seek luxury.

Of most interest to Motor Authority readers is the SRT, which still packs a 6.4-liter V-8 that delivers 475 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. Paired with an 8-speed automatic, the engine will rocket the vehicle to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds, see it pass the quarter mile in the mid 13.0-second bracket and top out at 160 mph.

Other powertrains in the 2017 Grand Cherokee lineup include a 3.6-liter V-6 with 295 hp and 260 lb-ft; a turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 diesel with 240 hp and 420 lb-ft; and a 5.7-liter V-8 with 360 hp and 390 lb-ft. All powertrains are mated to an 8-speed automatic gearbox and either rear- or four-wheel drive.

Sadly, the Grand Cherokee equipped with the 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 known as the Hellcat isn’t due until late 2017. It will likely be called a Trackhawk and be offered for a single year only. After that, Jeep is expected to introduce its next-generation Grand Cherokee.

Most models in the 2017 Grand Cherokee lineup feature a slightly revised face primarily distinguished by the seven-slot Jeep grille that debuted on 75th anniversary special edition Grand Cherokee launched last year. The SRT, however, gets a completely revised front with extra intakes. The extra cooling is in preparation for the Trackhawk model.

Pricing information for the 2017 range will be announced closer to the market launch in the fall.

For more on the Jeep Grand Cherokee, read the in-depth reviews at The Car Connection.

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