1999 Jeep Cherokee Sport inline 6 from North America


Basically solid and reliable, but lots of little irritations.


There have been no problems with the engine, drive train, or any other major systems. But there are lots of irritating little problems with the accessory systems.

For example:

Front power windows failed in down position. I replaced the operators myself, at $60 each and requiring about 20 minutes of labor, easy to do, but it sure did tick me off. I would prefer old fashioned roll up windows thank you.

Door and Tailgate wiring are failing due to cracking/deteriorating insulation, creating intermittent speaker, lock, window and rear wiper failures. Very annoying, and not easy to splice in new wire. Someone needs to tell Chrysler to buy better wire.

Key-less door locks quit working at around 50K miles, and the cruise control and horn both quit suddenly at around 75K. Clearly a wiring fault in the steering column, but I can't find it.

Console box rattles loose. There is no good place for my coffee cup, the gear shift interferes with the 12 power tap and the windshield gasket leaks. The under-hood lamp fell off. The arm rests are squishing down, and it's a pain to get to the jack and lug wrench. Also, it's difficult to get under the seats to vacuum it out. Call the waaaaambulance!

General Comments:

Other than the above irritations, the Jeep runs well and is very reliable after 152,000 tough miles. It is our winter beater and our summer camping car. Otherwise, we drive a Camry.

We live in a high mountain valley and in the winter, we frequently need 4wd to get out of the driveway, or for the entire commute to work through heavy snow. We also regularly use it for travel into back country areas (I teach science and do lots of field study in the summertime).

The Jeep has been great for family camping trips and cross country vacations. On vacations we favor the back roads and the old trails, avoiding the pavement whenever possible.

If they still made them, I'd consider buying another one, but since they don't, I plan to completely go through this one over the next couple of years. It will get full, competent, and complete repairs as needed and we hope to make some upgrades.

With our toddlers now getting bigger and require more space for luggage, a larger tent and a bigger cooler, I am looking to move the spare tire out of the way-back by installing a swing-away mount and hitch-capable rear bumper.

With it's age, the Cherokee is close to needing some alignment, suspension and steering gear work, so I am considering adding a very mild lift, and perhaps more aggressive tires. I'll make up a bit of the mileage loss by replacing the full time hubs with manual lockout hubs.

With older kids, we can have more adventures, so I am planning to beef up the front end with a tougher bumper. I don't need anything crazy, but it would be nice to have a winch.

For it's second decade, we'll top it off with a more capable roof rack for hauling fishing, ski, and camping gear.

Gas mileage is not bad for an SUV. We keep it under the speed limit and manage to get 22-27 mpg.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th August, 2008

1999 Jeep Cherokee Classic 4.0- 6 cylinder from North America


It's been worth the trouble


Replaced computer after it was fried due to a short.

Replaced radiator.

Replaced drive shaft.

Oil pressure gage stopped working.

The odometer does not work so we are unsure of the exact miles on the car.

General Comments:

Drives great, but it's a rough ride.

We've had a lot of problems out of it, and have only owned it for 4 months.

The interior and exterior look great!

Overall I love the Jeep; I just wish it would stop having engine trouble!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 30th June, 2008

6th Oct 2008, 21:39

I've learned a lot by reading various owner reviews of 1998 Jeep Cherokees... mainly that there are some quirks, but (on the good side) that these are fairly reliable vehicles... primarily due to the in-line 6 cyl. But, can anyone help ease my concerns when it comes to overall dependability, particularly since I'm needing to buy a vehicle for my college age son.

I'm currently looking at a 1998 Cherokee Classic. It appears to be in excellent condition...inside, out, and mechanically. It does have a few "rattles" and 140,000 miles. I've been told by some that it is on "the down hill side," and by others that it has a lot of "life" left in it. Who should I believe? Could this be a good dependable vehicle for a college student to drive over the next 4 - 6 years? Help!

12th Sep 2012, 01:58

140K is not much. On the Jeep XJ forums, many have over 200K, not that many problems.

For the poor college student, you can't do much better than a Toyota Corolla sedan. Cheap on gas (35 MPG), and very reliable. Many go 250K with just regular maintenance.