Chrysler is hoping Jeep-lovers love the radically redesigned 2014 Jeep Cherokee, back on the market as a replacement for the Jeep Liberty.
The Cherokee does its debut on the New York Auto Show floor.
Making its formal debut at the New York Auto Show, the Jeep Cherokee replaces the maker’s old Liberty model – and brings back a nameplate that decades ago helped touch off America’s love affair with sport-utility vehicles.
The name may be retro, though the design is anything but. The new Jeep Cherokee may maintain the maker’s familiar, 7-slot grille but it has virtually nothing in common with the old, chunky Cherokee, never mind the Liberty.
“It could be a bit controversial,” admits Ralph Gilles, the head of design at Chrysler LLC, who is nonetheless convinced buyers will fall in love with the distinctive shape of the new crossover.
Though it adopts a car-based crossover “architecture,” the new Jeep Cherokee can be equipped with some serious off-road hardware.
And, yes, rather than returning to a classic, body-on-frame SUV design, the 2014 Jeep Cherokee opted for a lighter, nimbler, car-based architecture that should have plenty of advantages in today’s market where buyers are generally more interested in on-road manners and mileage than off-road capabilities they’ll seldom put to the test.