3 Reasons to Pass on the 2021 Jeep Cherokee

While the 2021 Jeep Cherokee did receive a few upgrades from the previous model year, it still isn’t up to par. Rivals seem to be outperforming the Jeep Cherokee in terms of value and practicality for families. 

Is the 2021 Jeep Cherokee a good SUV? 

Yes, the 2021 Jeep Cherokee is an excellent SUV in terms of off-roading capabilities and towing power. If you spend a little more, you can upgrade to a beefier engine for a sportier ride too. However, rivals like the Ford Escape and Honda CR-V seem to be more attractive for families. 

2021 Jeep® Cherokee Trailhawk in the sand
2021 Jeep® Cherokee Trailhawk | Jeep

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With an MSRP of about $26,310, the Jeep Cherokee does have a competitive price. The Ford Escape starts off a bit lower with an MSRP of $24,885, and the Honda CR-V begins around $25,350. But let’s see why the Cherokee ranks below these other options. 

1. The Jeep Cherokee lacks cargo space 

If you’re spending this much on a small SUV, the chances are that you need it to haul at least two kids around. According to Car and Driver, all of their stuff might not fit. They mentioned that the cargo area is smaller and cubby storage is average at best compared to rivals.

There is 25.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats and up to 54.7 cubic feet of cargo space total. The Honda CR-V offers up to 75.8 cubic feet of cargo space, and the Ford Escape offers up to 65.4 cubic feet. So, the Cherokee is lacking. 

They mentioned that the Jeep Cherokee can feel a little claustrophobic. It has high window seals and small windows that contribute to this feeling. Also, the high lift-over height can make it difficult to load cargo. 

2. It doesn’t have the best ride quality

The base engine in the Jeep Cherokee is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder option that provides 180 hp and 171 lb-ft of torque. Car and Driver found it to have a lackluster acceleration and felt as if it was dull compared to the V6 and turbocharged engines. 

A 2021 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk
2021 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk | Jeep

Also, the Cherokee feels a little bulky. This could make it more difficult to maneuver in tight areas. While the steering is weighted and accurate, they wished it could be a little more responsive on the road. 

However, the 2021 Jeep Cherokee does have a comfortable ride. The seats are supportive, and the handling is decent, despite the suspension feeling a bit stiff. Also, bumps in the road are absorbed without much jouncing.

3. It could have a little more value 

We know this isn’t the Jeep Grand Cherokee, but for about $26k, this SUV could include more value. It has a weak fuel economy and only gets up to 23 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. However, it only got 25 mpg when tested by Car and Driver. 

The interior of the Jeep Cherokee
2021 Jeep Cherokee Latitude LUX interior | Jeep

A 7-inch touchscreen infotainment center is standard, but you can upgrade to an 8.4-inch screen. A Wi-Fi hotspot is also available, but only two USB ports can be found in the back seat to power devices. 

On a positive note, the standard safety features include forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assistance, blind-spot monitoring, and more.