An SUV that can tow, go off road, carry family and get 20 MPG
It is easier to list the things that have not gone wrong.
Engine coolant temperature sensor (one for the ECU and one for the gauge - both failed).
Oil pressure sending unit.
Crank position sensor (common problem).
Valve cover gasket.
Sway bar bushings.
Steering column bolts came unloose.
Power steering high pressure hose.
Rear wheel cylinders.
Brake master cylinder.
Front and rear shocks replaced by previous owner, and need to be changed again soon.
Fuel pump with gauge sender.
Plastic heater hose valve delete.
Oil filter housing o-rings.
Crank case breather hoses.
General maintenance items such as:
Ignition wires and plugs.
Upper and lower hoses.
Transmission fluid and transfer case flush.
Front and rear axle fluid change.
License plate light bulb.
Hammered the cotter pin to the front axle nut tightly, to stop the crown cotter pin key from rattling on the axle nut.
Greased the 10 or so grease fittings (they are everywhere).
I have owned several SUVs, and I worked for several years as a mechanic, so I know my way around a vehicle.
The Cherokee I purchased was not taken care of as it should have been, but since it was only $400, I bought it. You will see the list of problems/repairs I have done and think I bought a lemon, when in reality most older SUVs will have a lot of issues when you buy them for under 1,000. I have owned several SUVs (1995 5 speed 3.0 4x4 and 1997 5 speed 3.4 4x4, a Pathfinder 3.0 5 speed 4x4, 1993 Suburban, 1993 Explorer 4.0 4x4, 1999 Blazer 4x4).
Where most SUVs fall short is their MPG and towing capacity. The Suburban was great, but had poor MPG and poor off road capabilities due to its weight. The 4Runner was excellent off road, but had horrible MPG. The Pathfinder was great off road and great MPG, but poor towing. The Cherokee is the only one that can give me 20 MPG highway, tow a car on a tow dolly (4,000lbs) easily, and is excellent off road. That is a lot to ask for out of a SUV. If I baby my Cherokee, I can get even better than 20 on the highway; my 3.4 4Runner struggled to get 16.
Next there is the replacement parts, which most Cherokees need a lot of love, but don't worry, it's so cheap if you do it yourself. I did my entire cooling system for $240 including the coolant! The fuel pump is easy and only $115. If you can't repair your Cherokee or have someone that doesn't mind doing it for cheap, I would not recommend them if you plan on taking it to the shop for everything; you're better off buying a new vehicle, because old vehicles need boat loads of money if you're paying people to keep them going.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 1st July, 2014