Crossover & Midsize

2020 Jeep Cherokee vs. Honda CR-V: Is It Fair to Compare?

Consumer Reports is in the business of comparing vehicles of similar classes. Among 2020 compact SUVs, the Jeep Cherokee was ranked 14 out of 21 with an overall score of 52, and the Honda CR-V came in third out of 21 with an overall score of 77. But these SUVs are good at different things and appeal to slightly different buyers. So, it might not be fair to compare the two.

Powertrains of the 2020 Jeep Cherokee and Honda CR-V

The 2020 Jeep Cherokee offers more engine options than the CR-V, with more power and towing capability. The CR-V has a hybrid option, though. The 2020 Jeep Cherokee offers three different engine options all matched with a nine-speed automatic transmission.

The 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine is standard, but Consumer Reports describes it as “underpowered.” A 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine is new and produces 270 hp. Consumer Reports recommends the 3.2-liter V6 engine, though. With the 3.2-liter V6 and the towing package, the Cherokee is able to tow up to 4,500 pounds.

The 2020 Honda CR-V has either a gas engine or a hybrid version available, according to Consumer Reports. The gas engine is a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which produces 190 hp. It is paired with a CVT transmission. The CR-V has limited towing abilities, with a max of 1,500 pounds, according to Car and Driver.

The fuel efficiency of the 2020 Jeep Cherokee and Honda CR-V

The 2020 Jeep Cherokee doesn’t have great fuel efficiency. The Honda CR-V does better, and the CR-V Hybrid does even better. In Consumer Reports’ tests, the 2020 Cherokee’s base 2.4-liter engine delivered 22 MPG, while the new 2.0-liter turbocharged engine delivered 23 MPG, and the 3.2-liter V6 was able to get 21 MPG. The 2020 CR-V registered 28 MPG with the gas engine. The hybrid version gets 35 MPG.

Off-road capabilities

The 2020 Jeep Cherokee is a good choice for off-roading, while the CR-V mostly isn’t. It has several modes that drivers can use to adjust the traction for different ground surfaces. The Trailhawk package is especially equipped for off-roading, but it isn’t up for rock climbing.

The 2020 Honda CR-V just isn’t designed for off-road driving. However, it does include the Real-Time AWD Intelligent Control System, which helps the SUV adjust to different driving surfaces.

Design and technology of the 2020 Jeep Cherokee and Honda CR-V

The 2020 Jeep Cherokee offers a higher quality interior and a bigger touchscreen than the CR-V, but neither is a luxury SUV. The CR-V, however, has more standard safety features. Consumer Reports feels the Cherokee is mostly upscale but doesn’t lead its class. It is one of the most spacious for its class, though. It has a 7-inch touchscreen and six speakers in its infotainment system, and higher trims get an 8.4-inch screen and nine speakers.

All trims have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Available safety features include automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, blind-spot warning, and rear cross-traffic warning, but higher trims and packages are needed to get these features.

The CR-V’s interior is nicer now than in previous generations. The base trim is basic, but the other trims offer more finishes and padding. The rear seats are quite roomy. The base trim has a 5-inch radio screen, but all other trim levels have a 7-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.

Consumer Reports found the infotainment system overly complex to use. Several safety features come standard, including forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and lane-keep assistance. Blind-spot warning is an available option.

Starting prices

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The two SUVs have similar prices, although the Cherokee tops out higher. It does, however, offer more trim levels than the CR-V. The 2020 Jeep Cherokee sells for between 25,840 and 38,495. The 2020 Honda CR-V is priced between $25,150 and 36,050.

Both the 2020 Jeep Cherokee and 2020 Honda CR-V are compact SUVs, but they’re pretty different. Since they have slightly different audiences, it may not be worth comparing the two. Off-road and adventure enthusiasts will be happier with the 2020 Cherokee, while practical, frugal drivers will prefer the 2020 CR-V.