Review: 2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland
Introduced in 2021, the latest generation of the Jeep Grand Cherokee symbolises a significant change to the brand’s family-sized SUV and represents Jeep’s shift into a more premium space.
We recently spent some time with the five-seat version of the Grand Cherokee Overland equipped with the Luxury Technology Group option. While the SUV maintains its off-road DNA, it hits another level in terms of luxury and comfort.
They say first impressions matter, and to say that I was pleasantly surprised the first time I went to take the Grand Cherokee out in the evening would be saying it lightly. The first shot above shows what I was greeted with when I opened my garage that evening which activated the proximity wake-up feature. The lights illuminated the dark space, while the black exterior kept the bulk of the car in darkness with just the silhouette of its hefty stature highlighted. In this state, it emitted an ominous presence as if I had just roused a sleeping beast.
As I stepped inside, I was greeted with a premium dark Nappa leather interior, soft-touch points, and high-quality finishes all of which were softly illuminated by the interior ambient lighting.
In comparison to the larger seven-seat Grand Cherokee L, the silhouette of the five-seater offers much more balance. The shortened rear overhang and shorter wheelbase offer a stronger, more agile-looking stance that appeals more to the off-road enthusiast than its longer, wagon-like sibling.
The Overland is the top-of-the-range trim for the five-seat model while the seven-seater features another level above in the Summit Reserve. However, the Luxury Technology Group option that was included in the model we tested brings many of the luxuries of the Summit Reserve into the five-seater.
The new generation Grand Cherokee has put comfort at the forefront with a wide range of features that make this SUV an ultimate family cruiser. From large, overly adjustable seating, to the vast arrangement of cooling and heating options, every occupant is bound to be comfortable no matter which seat they're in. We love that you get heated front seats and steering wheel as standard across the range regardless of trim.
Apart from the base trim with its six-speaker audio system, all trims come with a popping nine-speaker Alpine Premium Audio System. At the very top of the range though, the 7-seat Summit Reserve is equipped with a wild 19-speaker Premium McIntosh High Performance Audio System with a 950-watt amplifier.
During the day, the huge dual-pane panoramic sunroof opens up the interior with a touch of a button that floods the space with sunlight. Features like the hands-free power liftgate, passive entry and keyless ignition, ParkView rear backup camera with front and rear park assist, adaptive cruise control and blindspot monitoring all offer exceptional conveniences.
The Luxury Technology Group option fitted to the model tested for this review adds a range of luxury features that sees the Grand Cherokee pushing into the premium SUV space. Our favourite feature of this option is the Power Seat Back Massage equipped to the front seats. The numerous massage settings gave me ample reason to use it every time I entered the car. Another fancy feature of this option was the digital rear-view mirror. It takes a second to get used to but offers a high-resolution picture of behind even when the car is stacked up with kids or other bulky items in the boot.
While wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come standard across the whole Grand Cherokee range, to get the wireless charging pad in the Overland or the seven-seat range-topping Summit Reserve trim, you need to add either the Luxury Technology Group option or the Advanced Technology Group option. This seems like an odd choice when the lower Night Eagle and Limited trims feature the wireless charging pad as standard.
The upgrade in luxury features, design and materials means the cost of the Grand Cherokee has also increased over its predecessor. Jeep offers the five-seat model in three trim levels - Night Eagle at $77,950, Limited at $83,950, and Overland at $98,450 - all excluding on-road costs.
The seven-seat version adds another trim level above the Overland called the Summit Reserve. This halo model is available for $119,450 or you can opt for a seven-seat version of the three previously mentioned trims for $5,000 on top of the price of their respective five-seat option.
Overall, it's easy to see what Jeep has decided its focus should be for the Grand Cherokee - off-road ability and luxury comfort - and we believe they've done an exceptional job hitting these targets.
The Jeep brand boasts mountains of off-road DNA so it's no surprise that they've nailed this aspect of the new Grand Cherokee in a more technologically-advanced form.
The class of luxury that Jeep is aspiring to reflect may not be something they've previously satisfied, however, we were significantly impressed with the premium levels achieved by the Overland trim that we drove for this review.
You can add a boost to either the off-road or luxury side of things by adding one of the optional feature groups - the Off-Road Group or the Luxury Technology Group - to tailor your Grand Cherokee even more to your liking.
The culmination of it all arguably puts the new generation Grand Cherokee on par with other highly capable off-roaders in premium trims such as the range-topping VX and Sahara variants of the Toyota LandCruiser 300 Series.