Should I Lease a Jeep Cherokee or Jeep Grand Cherokee?


Making the decision to lease a new vehicle is an exciting one. A new vehicle is one of the largest purchases many Americans will ever make, second only to buying a house. With so much money at stake, it is important to do your homework before you sign on the dotted line. You have narrowed down your top choice by two models, both by the iconic Jeep manufacturer. The only question left to ask now is, do I sign a Grand Cherokee lease, or a Cherokee lease?

 Jeep represents one of the most historically rich automotive brands in America. Originally designed for military use, Jeep vehicles have come a long way since fighting on the front lines. Their versatility, cultural significance, and dependability cannot be matched by any other vehicle on the road today, and is the short explanation of why Jeep vehicles are a great choice to lease. Two models in the Jeep lineup have long been confused with one another, leaving many consumers asking the question - What is the difference between the Cherokee, and the Grand Cherokee? To give you the short answer to that question - a lot.


Let’s Start at the Very Beginning…

Every vehicle has a place of origin. A story of how it came to be, and a history of how it has evolved since. This is an important aspect to consider when discussing the difference between the Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee, because the beginning of these two SUVs, helps explain their overall story.


First Came the Cherokee...


Who came first, the chicken or the egg? Rather than get caught in a semi-philosophical, entirely confusing, train of thought, let’s scrap this whole chicken and egg thing. When it comes to Jeep SUVs, we thankfully have a clear answer - the Cherokee came first.

 First appearing on the scene back in 1974, the Cherokee has seen many different body styles and generations since. From a wood paneled wagoneer, to a boxy family SUV, to the refined midsize crossover we know and love today - the Cherokee has redefined itself many times over the years. 

 Now that we have mentioned “redefined,” it is also important to note that the Cherokee actually defined the midsize SUV segment, and has been leading the charge ever since. 


Then Came the Grand Cherokee…


The Grand Cherokee was designed by Jeep as a direct relative of the Cherokee. Designed to be larger and offer more power than the smaller Cherokee, the Grand Cherokee hit American roadways for the first time in 1992. While its conception came from the American Motors Corporation (AMC), it’s actual production came about after Chrysler purchased the Jeep name in 1987 - making the Grand Cherokee the very first Jeep vehicle to be Chrysler-badged. 

Currently in it’s fourth generation, the Grand Cherokee is the most awarded SUV ever made - a title that Jeep works hard to ensure the Grand Cherokee will never lose. 


5 Most Obvious Difference Between Cherokee and Grand Cherokee

It is clear now that the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee are two very different vehicles. There is no disputing that fact, although many people have been confused on the topic for many years. Now that we are sure that these two vehicles are different from one another, let’s check out the five most obvious differences between the two SUVs. Consider each of the five differences, and rank them in order of importance. These might just hold the clue into which SUV is the right choice for you. 

  1. Price: Right off the bat, you will notice that the Grand Cherokee is notably more expensive than the Cherokee. For the 2015 model year, the Cherokee starts off at $23,095, while the Grand Cherokee has a starting MSRP of $29,995. Why such a price gap between these two Jeep SUVs? Keep reading…
  2. Size: At the most basic level, the Grand Cherokee was created to provide a larger option to the already-popular Cherokee model. At the risk of stating the obvious here - the Grand Cherokee is larger than the Cherokee. Offering a total cargo capacity of 54.9 cubic feet, the Cherokee still has plenty of interior room, but not when compared to the 68.3 cubic feet of cargo space the Grand Cherokee offers. 
  3. Capability: The Grand Cherokee offers a markedly higher towing capacity than the Cherokee. The smaller Jeep SUV offers a max towing of just 2,000 pounds, while the larger Grand Cherokee maxes out at 7,400 pounds of towing capacity. 
  4. Power & Performance: The Grand Cherokee offers drivers a base 3.6-liter V6 engine, while the Cherokee’s base engine block is a 2.4-liter I4. The Cherokee also offers a more powerful 3.2-liter V6, but even this engine falls 20 horsepower short of the Grand Cherokee’s base V6. On top of this, the Grand Cherokee also offers the option of a 5.7-liter V8, or a 3.0-liter diesel engine. 
  5. Features: The Grand Cherokee was built to be a more luxurious alternative to the Cherokee, and as a result, comes better equipped. The Grand Cherokee offers standard privacy glass, fog lamps, in-seat storage, ambient interior lights, a wireless charging pad, and more. 


Which is the Right Choice?


When it comes to deciding between which Jeep SUV to lease, it is important to consider your needs and lifestyle. If you need the extra room, added power and towing capacity, then the Grand Cherokee is an exceptional choice, and probably a no-brainer for your particular situation.

 On the other hand, if you are looking for a versatile SUV that doesn’t need to haul your boat up to the lake house on the weekends, then the smaller Cherokee might fit the bill. 

Both the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Jeep Cherokee are incredible vehicles, that will last you for years into the future. Deciding between the two is simply a matter of personal preference, lifestyle, and budgetary restrictions. You can’t go wrong with either of these Jeep brand vehicles. So, which one will you choose?