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Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland CRD

The equipment levels on the latest Jeep GC Overland are impressive and also had a boost with the 2014 update, particularly in terms of safety.

As well as the seven SRS airbags carried over from the previous version (dual front, front side, side curtain and a driver’s knee airbag) and stability control, the new Grand has been given forward collision warning with auto brake, blind-spot monitoring and active cruise control to lock on to the car in front, which we find intensely annoying and frustrating.

As previously mentioned the big boost for the 2014 GC is the addition of the impressive ZF eight-speed auto, which benefits both performance and fuel economy.

Inside the cabin the US-designed and Austrian-built Overland boasts a very satisfying array of creature comforts, including power leather front seats, leather rear seats with heated seating front and back, climate control split air-conditioning, a powered tailgate, reversing camera, auto xenon headlights, keyless entry, and 20-inch alloy wheels. Add in auto wipers and a sunroof and you have yourself a pretty pleasing equipment list.

The dash, instruments and audio/ air-conditioning controls benefit from a large touch-screen which is both easy to read and easy to use. All of this just adds to the GC’s value for money proposition, which might sound strange with a $72k machine but this is measures up well against Euro SUVs and most particularly when it comes to price.

The Overland doesn’t boast a third row of pop up seats like many of its opponents so it is strictly a five-seater, which may or may not suit you depending on your needs. Having said that the comfort levels are very high and good NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) makes this a very pleasant place to spend a few hours on a long drive, or for that matter, around town in traffic.

We’ve heard some criticism of the GC for being too American when it comes to the interior but American cars aren’t what they used to be and the interior in the GC is finished beautifully with lovely touches, such as the contrast stitched leather on the dash and trim, to really subtle mood lighting that even illuminates all the nooks and crannies without being intrusive. In terms of fit and finish, again US cars aren’t what they used to be. The weight of imports on the US market has forced the big three to lift their game and besides, our right-hand drive Jeeps are built in Austria, so this is close to being a German car.

Published: Friday, May 30, 2014

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