It’s good news, bad news time at the Jeep division of Stellantis, formerly FCA, formerly Daimler Chrysler, formerly Chrysler Corporation. The 4xe plug-in hybrid version of the popular Grand Cherokee will go on sale this spring. According to Autoblog, buyers will have 5 trim levels to choose from — base, Trailhawk, Overland, Summit, and Summit Reserve.
The Grand Cherokee 4xe Good News
Every Grand Cherokee 4xe will come with the same basic powertrain — a 2-liter, 4-cylinder, turbocharged gasoline engine, a pair of electric motors, a total system output of 375 horsepower (280 kW) and 470 pound-feet (637 NM) of torque, and a battery pack that operates on 400 volts. The 4xe models will have a towing capacity of 6,000 pounds and a battery-only range of 25 miles. If you drive less than 25 miles a day, you could drive your Grand Cherokee 4xe on its daily appointed rounds and never burn a drop of gasoline — in theory.
The Grand Cherokee 4xe Bad News
Now for the “Are you sitting down?” part. The base model costs $59,495, not including a hefty $1,795 destination charge. That’s before any state, local, or federal incentives. To put that in perspective, the base Grand Cherokee with a V6 engine and 4-wheel drive lists for $41,185 plus transportation, making the 4xe very nearly a $20,000 bump for the privilege of driving a maximum of 25 miles on electrons instead of molecules. Yikes!
The off-road focused Trailhawk begins at $64,280 plus delivery. It adds Jeep’s Quadra-Drive II 4-wheel drive system with an electronic 2-speed transfer case, an off-road driving assist function called Selec-Speed Control, 18-inch wheels, and redesigned front and rear fascias to increase the approach and departure angles (36 and 30 degrees, respectively). It also features leather upholstery, heated front and rear seats, a 10.1-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system, a 10.25-inch touchscreen integrated into the passenger’s side of the dashboard, and a 9-speaker Alpine sound system.
The Overland model is priced at $67,555 plus delivery. It adds 20-inch wheels, “An-Teak” interior trim, ventilated front seats, and a 19-speaker sound system. Step up to the Summit version, priced at $71,615 plus delivery, and you get LED fog lights, “Absolute Oak” interior trim, quilted seat bolsters, 16-way power front seats with a massage function, a 4-zone climate control system, and a passel of electronic driving aids.
Finally, there is the Summit Reserve, priced at $76,095 plus delivery. It features open pore “Waxed Walnut” interior trim, quilted Palermo leather upholstery, (a cousin of fine Corinthian leather, perhaps?), ventilated second row seats, and suede-like upholstery on the A-pillars. It also rides on bespoke 21-inch wheels.
The takeaway for the Grand Cherokee 4xe is that its prices will take your breath away. Is it crass of us to suggest that is a lot of damn money for 25 miles of range? Perhaps, but still, that is a lot of damn money for 25 miles of range. Your mileage may vary. See dealer for details. If you gotta have one, they will be available at your local Jeep dealer this spring, which means sometime before June. And if you get one, don’t forget to plug it in. That’s really the secret to the plug-in hybrid experience.
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