History of the Jeep Grand Cherokee

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you were planning on doing one thing, oh, let's say you were on your way to a friend's house and decided to take a different route only to discover that your choice resulted in the discovery of a faster way to get there?

If you haven't, who knows, maybe you'll find something exciting along the way!

History of the Jeep Grand Cherokee

What I'm trying to get to here is that when Jeep decided to release the Grand Cherokee the original plan was to use it as a means to phase out the Cherokee line. What Jeep discovered instead was a market ready to welcome both and in 1992, when the Grand Cherokee launched, Jeep recorded strong sales for both vehicles.

Some have pointed to the Grand Cherokee as being a herald of the surge and revitalization of the SUV segment, noting that the only real competition in its category was the Ford Explorer, a vehicle available since 1990. Still, and perhaps as a result of this face-off, it's easy to see the emergence of the modern SUV class as having started here.

Offering a larger interior and some of the advantages that come with a vehicle imagined, conceptualized, and then developed from the ground-up, the Grand Cherokee surpassed 200,000 sales only a year after its release.

Codenamed the "ZJ", the Grand Cherokee was debuted at the 1992 Detroit Auto Show, with the president of Chrysler, Bob Lutz in the driver's seat. Along for the ride was the mayor of Detroit, Coleman Young, who he took from Jefferson North Assembly Plant via a police escort up the steps of Cobo Hall and then through a plate glass window into the Detroit Auto Show.

History of the Jeep Grand Cherokee

The history of Grand Cherokee can be traced back to 1983 in a time before the modern Chrysler Company was fully formed and the Jeep nameplate was in the hands of the American Motors Corporation. There, Larry Shinoda, Giorgetto Giugiaro, and Alain Clenet, who were contracted and not full-time employees at AMC at the time, were tasked with creating a clay model for a potential replacement to the Jeep Cherokee model.

Often called the XJC Project, it is remembered as one of the first of its kind to employ computer-aided design (CAD) software aligned with the company's business processing model known as product lifecycle management.

It was so successful that after Chrysler took over operations from AMC in 1987 the program was applied company-wide.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee proved so successful that it went on to win numerous awards, including "4x4 of the Year" and reaching forward to present day when it is regarded as the most-awarded SUV ever. There have been four generations of Grand Cherokees released since its inauguration back in 1992, with the latest model offering impressive options and features.

History of the Jeep Grand Cherokee

Like its predecessors, the fourth generation Grand Cherokee has won praise and accolades from drivers and automotive experts alike. Engine choices include the award-winning 3.6-litre Pentastar V6, the 5.7-litre HEMI V8, and the 6.4-litre HEMI V8 and most recently the 3.0-litre EcoDiesel V6.

Chrysler recently announced the introduction of a 6.2-litre Supercharged HEMI Hellcat V8-equipped model in the next few years. Which is an exciting prospect for those aware of the recognition and attention the Dodge Charger and Dodge Challenger received when they launched with the 6.2-litre engine last year.

Still, we find that the Grand Cherokee is a vehicle full of potential and opportunities. Whether you want to focus on the fact it was devised with a unibody chassis and offered with rear-wheel or four-wheel-drive options, there's plenty to be impressed by when you get down to the specs and package options.

Find our more today by joining us at Marine Chrysler - your home for the Grand Cherokee and so much more!

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