2023 Jeep Cherokee

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2023 Jeep Cherokee Review: Old Dog Still Has Tricks

By the time you read this, production at the Belvidere Assembly Plant in Illinois would already have come to an end, making the 2023 Jeep Cherokee we review here the last model year of a car that has been on sale in the USA for a decade. It's been showing its age, and although most of the Jeep Cherokee's competitors are far more modern compact crossovers, such as the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4, the Jeep does have a trick up its sleeve in still offering a proper off-road model, something few rivals have. The Ford Bronco Sport in Badlands guise is an excellent alternative to the Cherokee and a far more modern car - and it's cheaper to boot. But, although it hasn't changed much over the years, the Cherokee still looks smart and the run-out model is as capable off the beaten track as it ever was. The current model lacks any kind of hybrid version, but that will be fixed in the next model, which will likely feature electrification prominently.

Read in this review:

  • Exterior Design 6 /10
  • Performance 6 /10
  • Fuel Economy 8 /10
  • Interior & Cargo 7 /10
  • Infotainment & Features 10 /10
  • Reliability 7 /10
  • Safety 8 /10
  • Value For Money 7 /10
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2023 Jeep Cherokee Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2022 Cherokee?

The biggest news is that the 2023 Cherokee is the last model year. The nameplate is not being discontinued and Stellantis has promised that a new Jeep Cherokee SUV will be coming in the future, but for now, this is the end of the line for the current model. For its last foray, the number of Jeep Cherokee trims in the range is cut down to two: Altitude Lux and Trailhawk. Both are 4WD, with no FWD models available anymore. In January 2023, Jeep announced that the 3.2-liter V6 engine will not be available for the new model year, so all the models are four-cylinders this year - a 180-hp naturally aspirated 2.4-liter for the Altitude Lux and a 270-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter for the Trailhawk.

While an 8.4-inch touchscreen became standard across the board recently, the system gains navigation and SiriusXM this year. The Altitude Lux has remote start, Nappa leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel, black 17-inch alloys, and a seven-inch digital driver-information display. The Trailhawk trim gains additional standard features, namely automatic high beams, a garage-door opener, a security alarm, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. Standard on all trims this year are adaptive cruise control with stop & go, front and rear parking sensors with automatic reverse braking, and perpendicular & parallel parking assistance. The 2023 Jeep Cherokee's starting price in the US is $37,695.

Pros and Cons

  • Solid towing credentials
  • Proper off-road model available
  • Many standard features
  • Trailhawk's engine is powerful
  • Absorbent ride
  • Uncompetitive fuel economy
  • Small trunk
  • Altitude Lux's engine is lethargic
  • Expensive next to rivals

What's the Price of the 2023 Jeep Cherokee?

The price of the 2023 Jeep Cherokee Altitude Lux 4x4 is $37,695 and the Trailhawk 4x4 will cost you $41,295. Keep in mind that these are the Jeep Cherokee's MSRPs and they exclude any packages, options, or the destination fee of $1,595.

Best Deals on 2023 Jeep Cherokee

2023 Jeep Cherokee Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
Altitude Lux
2.4L Inline-4 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Four-Wheel Drive
2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Four-Wheel Drive
See All 2023 Jeep Cherokee Trims and Specs

2023 Jeep Cherokee Handling and Driving Impressions

Even after all these years, the Cherokee still makes a good impression when the wheels start rolling. In contrast to most soft-roader rivals, it feels like a serious SUV from behind the wheel and sits four square on the road, riding with a solidity that makes it feel bigger than it is. It absorbs shocks before they reach the cabin and never feels floaty or lapses into harshness, exhibiting excellent damping and body control, while resisting lean very well. All the control are nicely tuned and the brake feel is positive and progressive, although the somewhat numb steering is par for the course in this class. Considering it's so well-behaved on the road, its off-road ability will come as a pleasant surprise, especially in the extremely capable trail-rated Trailhawk. Sadly, the 180-hp engine in the Altitude is asthmatic and labors to get up to speed, merge, or overtake as the dimwitted and slow-shifting nine-speed autobox tries to keep it on the boil. The punchy 270-hp turbocharged engine in the Trailhawk is undoubtedly the one to have but it's also a bit hamstrung by the same transmission that can't seem to make up its mind.

Verdict: Is The 2023 Jeep Cherokee A Good SUV?

For an authentic, solid-riding Jeep feel in the compact class, there is still little that can touch the Cherokee. Its suspension setup makes it a capable SUV that is nice to drive, on the road or off it. The Trailhawk in particular, is powerful, comfortable, and impressively off-road capable, with excellent towing capabilities. It will do hard work better than most rivals, and the Jeep engineering shines through brightly. However, it seems most people don't need all that ability in this class, and the Jeep has no answers for its rivals' fuel economy and available hybrid options. The off-road-ready Bronco Sport Badlands does more than enough for most people in a more modern and cheaper package. People's requirements have changed, and the Cherokee no longer fits the bill the way it once did.

What 2023 Jeep Cherokee Model Should I Buy?

Which of the Jeep Cherokee trims you should buy depends very much on what you want to use it for. The Altitude Lux is well-equipped and more than off-road capable enough for the vast majority of people, but we simply cannot recommend it due to its weak engine. That leaves only the Trailhawk, which emphatically addresses the power problem, but comes with way more off-road chops than you may need - and at a higher price. If you don't mind shelling out more than $40k for a compact SUV, the Cherokee Trailhawk is the real deal - a proper trail-rated Jeep that's good at what Jeeps are known for, while being nice to drive and able to tow a decent load behind it. If you don't need any of that, you're better off with a Honda CR-V.

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