The first (and only) SUV I personally owned was a Jeep Grand Cherokee.  It was a workhouse of a truck back in 1997, yet comfy and stylish.  The Jeep brand says a lot about its owner.  Maybe he’s a rugged dude.  Perhaps she is a practical woman who schleps and hauls things and needs a strong truck with large cargo capacity.  For me, well we just had our second child and needed an upgrade from my 2-seat sports car.

Fast forward 22 years later (and another kid) and the Jeep Grand Cherokee is still a stylish workhorse.  Not much has changed with the overall look from back than other than it’s less boxy shape and lowered for easier entry access.

I hung out with the Summit version of this classic vehicle and found it be a sturdy off-roader with a smooth ride thanks to generous tires and shock absorbers (and well, it’s a Jeep).  There are 5 different engine configurations with my tester having a  5.7L V8 Hemi that puts out 360hp.  The standard 3.6L V6 churns out 295hp and returns respectable fuel economy of 19/26 mpg.  You get about 68 cubic feet of cargo space when the rear seats are folded.  Not bad though there are other in-class SUVs with a more room, namely the Honda Passport and Toyota 4Runner.

The thing with Grand Cherokees is you can add on a lot of things which add on the price.  It starts around $32,000 with few options but take a look at the Limited X which begins at $50,000 and keep going to the top-of-the-line Trackhawk with supercharged 707hp.  No doubt it is a sexy beast but it should be for $90,000.  Alas, Jeep knows they can appeal to most everyone with all these flavors.

Listen to the full ride from my radio show below:

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