NEW & NOTABLE
Last year, the new Jeep Wrangler JL debuted and sold alongside the old JK Wrangler during its first full year. Now, it has the stage all to itself. The 2019 Wrangler utilizes several small visual revisions and a number of tech upgrades and modern aluminum body parts to differentiate itself from the old guard version.
The Jeep Wrangler Gladiator Pickup is one of the most anticipated new models for 2019. The new JL Wrangler-based truck will be the division’s first pickup since the 1992 Comanche. The mid-size pickup delivers Jeep’s signature rugged exterior and removable body panels – as well as three possible roof configurations: hard top with removable panels, electrically operated canvas roof, and a manual-folding soft top. The four-door cab with a five-foot bed and Jeep’s off-road equipment means versatility and style. Look for a 3.6-L V6 producing 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque routed through a standard 6-speed manual or an 8-speed automatic.
The 2019 Jeep Cherokee offers a refreshed front end design featuring much larger headlights and a slightly revised grille that feels more signature Jeep. The interior delivers new design cues and an all-new centerpiece 7-inch touchscreen display with standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration. Offering a 180-horsepower 2.4-L 4-cylinder standard engine, and an impressive 271-hp 3.2-L V6 as optional, you can now opt for a third version: a 2.0-L turbo 4-cylinder delivering 270 hp and 239 pound-feet of torque. All engines are mated to a sleek 9-speed automatic transmission and with standard front, or optional all-wheel drive.
As the smallest of the Jeeps, Renegade shows off a few cycle changes with a new front bumper (showcasing relocated fog lamps) and a similar bumper revision at the rear. Inside you will find a revised dash design with a larger interface screen and revised HVAC controls. The standard 1.4-L turbocharged 4-cylinder (160 hp) is very capable, though an optional 2.4-L 4-cylinder (180 hp) appears on many higher trim levels. Look for a 6-speed manual or a 9-speed auto transmission.
Compass, Grand Cherokee
This auto review was researched and written by SteinPro Content Services and provided to the Sun-Times for publication