2019 Jeep Cherokee Latitude Plus
With a refreshed new front fascia, a new 2.0-liter turbo engine and some convenience updates, Jeep still misses the mark with their latest Cherokee offering. In a segment that continues to face fierce competition (like the Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4), the 2019 Jeep Cherokee struggles in the areas of styling, performance, fuel economy and standard features.
Exterior styling on the 2019 Cherokee is an improvement on previous models but does not stand out amongst its competitors and fails to impress overall. A more traditional headlight design, moving the license plate position from the bumper to the lift gate and an upgraded rear end are certainly an improvement over the previous model but do not move the needle enough to give it the highest marks.
However, the interior felt comfortable, had an awesome stereo, and delivered a smooth ride both in and out of the city. Jeep designers can’t seem to totally get away from the hard plastics, but most areas were upgraded by using higher quality materials and delivered an overall improved cabin experience. The Cherokee provided plenty of interior space and is one of the leaders of its class of compact SUVs.
The 2019 Cherokee also received a major infotainment system upgrade. There is an available 7.0” or 8.4” touchscreen along with the newest generation of Uconnect. While Uconnect used to be one of the lowest-rated infotainment systems, Jeep has made a massive improvement by providing a sharper and more responsive interface. The Cherokee also comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a definite plus in a world where a personal phone-to-car connection is paramount.
While the 2019 Jeep Cherokee’s off-road heritage is present and delivers as you’d expect any Jeep vehicle to do, it suffers from a lagging performance in daily-driving situations. The 270-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbo engine mated to 9-speed automatic transmission provided satisfactory acceleration when given plenty of runway to get up to speed. But the transmission oftentimes felt sluggish in city driving. The Cherokee also struggles in city environments where the vehicle is asked to manage multiple twists and turns. The sluggish handling could prove to be major bummer for those driving primarily in city settings. Fuel economy for the 2019 Cherokee comes in at 23 city / 31 highway / 26 combined — nothing to shake a stick at.
If you’re considering a 2019 Jeep Cherokee, you’d do yourself a favor to also look at its competitors who delivery a better overall package. Specific brands/models to look at are the Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5 and the Nissan Rogue.
HIGHS: Improved interior space and design, upgraded infotainment system, off-road capability
LOWS: Sluggish in city/urban settings, overall ride quality, just satisfactory exterior design
PRICE AS TESTED: $37,655
See you on the road…
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