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2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.4

For the 2011 model year, Jeep ushers in its fourth-generation Grand Cherokee; one of the last products conceived during Chrysler's now defunct partnership with Daimler. The latest Grand Cherokee rides on an all-new platform that shares certain key components with the next-generation Mercedes-Benz ML, lengthening its wheelbase by more than five inches, but only slightly expanding overall exterior dimensions. As a result, the vehicle remains a dedicated five-seater unlike many of its competitors, which have added third row seating in recent years. Regardless of its modest commonality with the ML-Class, the Grand Cherokee feels like a distinctly Jeep product, offering improved levels of refinement and sophistication while retaining the key Grand Cherokee attributes of formidable off-road capabilities, rugged style and on-road competence.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want a traditional SUV that offers good outward visibility, a roomy and functional interior, and solid off-road chops, you'll like the Jeep Grand Cherokee. That said, buyers who never make use of its robust character will still find the Grand Cherokee impressively comfortable on road.

You May Not Like This Car If...

You may not like the Jeep Grand Cherokee if you need to carry more than five occupants – unlike many of its competitors, the Jeep doesn't offer a third-row option. Also, if you have no intentions of taking your vehicle off the road well traveled, you might prefer the enhanced comfort and fuel economy offered by the latest breed of on-road focused crossover utility vehicles.

What's New for 2011

Big changes for 2011 on the Jeep Grand Cherokee include improved interior space, an all-new V6 engine, an updated V8 engine and enhanced four-wheel drive systems. Jeep has also added a host of optional features not previously seen on the Grand Cherokee, including adaptive cruise control, a power rear lift gate and a blind-spot warning system.

Driving the Grand Cherokee

Driving Impressions When driven off of paved roads, the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee impresses with its sure-footedness and abundance of traction. In addition to a trio of...

four-wheel drive systems, each offering an increasing level of capability and sophistication, the Jeep's relatively compact dimensions allows it to squeeze through narrow passages that would stop other larger off-roaders. It is worth noting that the fourth-generation Grand Cherokee features an independent rear suspension instead of a live axle, resulting in more moments with a rear wheel in the air while off-roading; a less than ideal situation when rock crawling. With all that said, most drivers will never venture off road, and during normal driving on paved roads, the Grand Cherokee impresses with a comfortable ride, surprising levels of grip when cornering, decent steering feel and a quiet interior, even at freeway speeds. Our only real complaints are an excess of body lean during abrupt maneuvers and substantial dive under hard braking.

Quadra-Lift
The optional Quadra-Lift air suspension is an excellent supplement to the Grand Cherokee's four-wheel drive systems. When raised to maximum height, the system creates 10.7 inches of ground clearance and improves approach and departure angles along with break-over height. The system can also lower the vehicle, easing entry and egress as well as improving aerodynamics at higher speeds, enhancing fuel economy.

Selec-Terrain
Similar to a system already offered by Land Rover, Selec-Terrain lets the driver quickly adjust vehicle behavior for a variety of driving environments. With a twist of a single knob, the system tweaks torque distribution, as well as transmission and throttle behavior along with the stability control and the air suspension – if equipped – to maximize performance on snow, rocks, mud, sand or tarmac.

2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Details
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee photo Interior

The cabin of the Grand Cherokee has always offered a premium experience, especially compared to other more stripped-down Jeep products, but the latest version takes that notion to a new level. Expanded use of soft materials, real wood trim and tasteful but attractive interior themes add an upscale persona to the otherwise simple and functional cabin. Passenger space is good in all seating positions, with rear seat passengers enjoying an extra four inches of leg room compared to the previous model. Cargo volume has also expanded, with 35.1 cubic feet behind the rear seats and nearly twice that amount available with the 60/40 split rear seats folded.

Exterior
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee photo

There's no mistaking the 2011 model as anything other than a Grand Cherokee, yet the newest iteration represents a far more sophisticated and modern interpretation of the vehicle's now familiar shape. Standard Jeep cues including a seven-slot grille, hexagonal wheel arches and minimal front and rear overhangs are enhanced with taut new body panels, creating a masculine chiseled look. In back, for the first time on a Grand Cherokee, buyers can select a power rear lift gate. Another new exterior add-on is a panoramic sunroof that bathes the interior with natural light but creates quite a bit of wind noise when open.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

In its most basic form, the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee features cloth seats, rear-wheel drive, an eight-way power driver's seat, automatic headlights, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, and a six-speaker audio system with auxiliary input. Standard safety features include stability control, traction control, electronic roll mitigation, trailer sway control, six-airbags and active head restraints.

Optional Equipment

The base Jeep Grand Cherokee can be up-fitted with a wide variety of features in including leather seats, a power passenger seat, ventilated front seats, heat front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel and HID headlights. In terms of in-vehicle entertainment and communications, buyers can add a premium nine-speaker audio system, USB audio port, rear-seat DVD entertainment system, navigation and the UConnect hands-free communications system. Among the more high-tech options now available are rear parking sensors with a backup camera, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot alert and rear cross-traffic detection.

Under the Hood

Engine choices include a 3.6-liter V6 and a 5.7-liter V8 engine, each equipped with a five-speed automatic transmission. V6 buyers enjoy decent acceleration along with a 5,000-pound tow rating, while those who opt for the V8 benefit from an increased tow rating of 7,400 pounds along with more spirited performance. Rear-wheel drive is standard, but the Grand Cherokee can be equipped with three different four-wheel drive systems, ranging from the simple full-time Quadra-Trac I system to the highly capable Quadra-Drive II system featuring a two-speed transfer case and an electronic limited slip rear differential.

3.6-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6400 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/23 (2WD), 16/22 (4WD)

5.7-liter V8
360 horsepower @ 5150 rpm
390 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 (2WD), 13/19 (4WD)

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2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.4
Out of 10

Based on 339 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.4/10
    Performance
    8.6/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Worst Car Owned

By on Wednesday, December 23, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 7,800

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I had wonderful intentions when I purchased this Jeep. I was told of how great a car it was, etc etc. So I spent 70K on it. BIG HUGE MISTAKE! The car has a mind of its own. No one can find what is wrong. DO NOT SPEND YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY ON THIS VEHICLE! All it has going for it, its the engine power. Nothing else!"

5 people out of 17 found this review helpful

best vehicle ever!)

By on Wednesday, December 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 13,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "price,fun,luxury,HEMI,go anywhere the road ends"

Cons: "not enough off road trails to drive in my area"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

awesomness

"Has everything I need,want or feel is all around great SUV for the price. If you have not looked at this as your normal type of SUV all you GMC,Chevy,Toyota,Nissan,BMW,Ford people, it is an awesome machine in terms of capability and function. Friend at work has X-5 and he wished he saved money and bought JEEP Grand Cherokee instead as he said it is better value more bang for the buck option wise."

15 people out of 15 found this review helpful

awesomness

I own three jeeps now, the 2012 is the best ever.

By on Sunday, November 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Cons: "visibility to the rear over the head rests, sucks."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Great vehicle, highways a blast offers the same ride at 90 mph south on I-95 as county roads at 55 mph. STeering is tight, comfort is right with adjusable seats, this vehicle rates right up there with the sedans or down and dirty as with the "MUDDERS" Jeep hit it out of the ball park as far as I am concerned."

19 people out of 36 found this review helpful

Great handling

By on Saturday, November 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "handling and style"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Sport Utility that handles like a sports car. Average gas millage 18 to 24 . Have to keep looking at my speed on highway don't realize how fast you are going"

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Excellent but soft ware needs improvment

By on Friday, November 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 10,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Performance and comfort"

Cons: "Vehicle and customer support after sale"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"I have owned a 2014V8 Limited since new. Driving and comfort is excellent better than BMW-X5 but not as good as Escalade. Some annoying soft ware issues are related to U-connect service unreliable; Ipod adaptor doesn't work and the dealer can not fix it dispite replacing radio, and service recall parts availability. Good in snow and cold weather. Would buy again if not only because I don't want to spend another $1000 on snow tires for another vehicle. Bottom line: The Positives outway the annoying negatives. Good performance and comfort. Below avaerage customer support from Jeep."

14 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Best 4WD sytem for everyday driving

By on Saturday, November 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 84,200

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "mileage, stylling, handling, good fit and finish"

Cons: "Front seat room for bigger people, keyfob battery"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I am very satisfied with the handling, overall performance and fuel economy. 24mpg summer, 21 in the winter and plenty of power.The transmission and 4WD system is flawless. Handles icy and snowy roads right with the best of them. Comfortable to drive, especially for shorter people, tall people might notice a lack of headroom.Cargo area holds a lot of stuff."

6 people out of 14 found this review helpful

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