JeepÂ® Grand Cherokee SRT owners have come to expect - and appreciate - a vehicle that is powerful and refined, luxurious and functional, muscular and stylish. For 2014, Grand Cherokee SRT checks all of those boxes - while also delivering unexpected delights.
Enhancements for the 2014 model year include an all-new, fully electronic eight-speed automatic transmission that delivers improved fuel economy, significantly improved towing capacity, hardware and software revisions that further heighten Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT's fun-to-drive factor during a daily commute or for more spirited driving on the race track.
Outside, the new 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT sports styling that is even more aggressive than the previous model. Design enhancements for 2014 include a new signature LED character lamp treatment, a brawnier grille, a new, one-touch liftgate and a new rear spoiler.
Inside, Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT customers are treated to a new 8.4-inch touchscreen that displays a wealth of SRT-exclusive Performance Pages data. A new launch control button is situated behind the new T-handle shifter on the center console, and a redesigned SRT-exclusive three-spoke, heated steering wheel with more ergonomically efficient paddle shifters, features a host of comfort, convenience and connectivity controls.
For 2014, Grand Cherokee SRT owners get three additional gears from their transmission: an all-new 8HP70 eight-speed automatic. Fully electronic, it features on-the-fly shift-map changing.
For an even sportier, more driver-controlled experience, the 8HP70 eight-speed transmission can be manually shifted using newly redesigned, more pronounced, ergonomically efficient steering-wheel paddle controls.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT features a new Eco Mode for 2014 that optimizes the new transmission's shift schedule and extends the range of Fuel Saver Technology, which deactivates four cylinders when conditions allow. A button on the center stack allows driver's to engage Eco Mode for improved fuel economy.
The new eight-speed automatic transmission is specifically engineered to optimize shift quality and shift points for fuel economy, performance and drivability. The intelligent software takes into account variables including engine torque gradients, kick-down events, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, grade changes, friction detection and downshift detection to determine the appropriate shift map.
Additional parameters integrated into the control strategy include vehicle speed control, electronic stability control interaction and temperature. The result is automatic shifting that is ideally attuned to the performance requirements of almost any driving demand.
The new transmission is mated to the proven and powerful 6.4-liter HEMIÂ® V-8 with Fuel Saver Technology delivering 470 horsepower (351 kW) at 6,000 rpm and 465 lb.-ft. (630 Nâ€¢m) of torque at 4,300 rpm and helps deliver greatly enhanced towing performance of 7,200 pounds - a 44-percent improvement over the 5,000-lb. towing capacity from the previous model.
For 2014, the new electronic T-handle shifter provides the flexibility for drivers to choose a transmission shift schedule independent from the Selec-Track system. Drive and Sport shifting can be selected via the T-handle with no effect on the chosen suspension, stability control and driveline torque split settings.
Also new for 2014 is a launch control system that mimics a professional driver's inputs to optimize Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT's performance by bringing engine, transmission, driveline, stability control, and suspension in line for a textbook launch. Controlled by a button behind the new T-handle shifter on the center console, the result is improved and more consistent straight-line acceleration. The performance experience of the 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT is further accentuated by a change in transfer case proportioning and dynamic controls for the Selec-Track system when the vehicle is in Track Mode. When this mode is selected, 70 percent of the engine's torque is delivered to the rear wheels for a more pronounced rear-wheel-drive experience. Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT drivers will notice a vehicle that is more responsive from mid-corner to exit.
Outstanding ride, handling and capability
The Grand Cherokee SRT rides on a short- and long-arm (SLA) independent front suspension with coil springs, Bilstein adaptive damping suspension (ADS), upper- and lower-control arms ("A" arms), and a stabilizer bar.
The rear suspension is a multi-link design with coil spring, Bilstein ADS, aluminum lower control arm, independent upper links (tension and camber), plus a separate toe link, and a stabilizer bar.
Software improvements to the retuned Selec-Track system further distinguish the five dynamic modes: Auto, Sport, Tow, Track, and Snow, enabling drivers to choose a vehicle setting that more ideally meets their requirements and ambient conditions. Drivers will find the torque split change in Track Mode provides a vehicle that is more responsive from mid-corner to exit and one that delivers faster lap times at their favorite track.
The new 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT delivers excellent braking performance, requiring only 116 feet to come to a full stop from 60 miles per hour (mph). Credit belongs to red-painted, Brembo six-piston (front) and four-piston (rear) calipers, and vented rotors at all four corners measuring 15 inches (front) and 13.8 inches (rear).
Starting with the performance-oriented and functional designs from the SRT (Street and Racing Technology) brand, the 2014 JeepÂ® Grand Cherokee SRT model builds on that success with new exterior and interior styling cues that convey an even higher level of opulence and power.
"The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT raises the bar again for our performance SUV," said Mark Trostle, Head of Design - SRT Brand, Mopar and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC. "With an exterior that is even more aggressive while remaining upscale and functional, along with a luxurious interior cabin that offers new technology and connectivity, the new Grand Cherokee SRT remains at home on the road or on the racetrack."
Aggressive and functional exterior
The blending of aggressive, upscale and functional styling of the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT is readily apparent up front, where the signature seven-slot upper grille with black screen insert has been shortened and is flanked by slimmer, adaptive, bi-xenon headlamps that are surrounded by a signature LED character lamp treatment. The iconic Jeep grille itself is larger, and the headlamps feature a unique black background to distinguish the new SRT model from other Jeep Grand Cherokee models, while further accenting their jewel-like appearance.
"We wanted the new Grand Cherokee SRT model to have two distinct visual signatures: one by day and one at night, something that would be unique to this vehicle. All of the styling enhancements - especially the headlights and LED surround - give this vehicle a unique, performance-oriented and menacing look," said Trostle.
The new styling enhancements also enabled SRT designers to incorporate the headlamp washers into the headlamp housing for the first time - rather than on the bumper - for a cleaner, more functional appearance.
New, five-spoke 20-inch "Goliath" wheels with polished finish are standard and ride on standard Pirelli 295/45ZR20 Scorpion Verde all-season tires or available Pirelli P Zero Three-season tires. Available split five-spoke, 20-inch forged aluminum wheels feature the "Spider Monkey" design in Satin Carbon or SRT-exclusive Black Vapor Chrome finishes.
A new Grand Cherokee badge along the vehicle's sides feature a more distinct, more pronounced font.
The front light treatment of the new 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT is mirrored in back for a cohesive styling appearance and features larger tail lamps with signature LED lighting. To further emphasize the performance heritage of the SRT design, the tail lamps feature a black surround, creating the illusion of floating lamps.
Not an illusion is the all-new, more aerodynamically efficient, rear spoiler integrated into the all-new liftgate.
"Typically, designers have to work with features from base vehicles and integrate them into other variants. The opposite was true when it came to our rear spoiler. We created it for our SRT model and it works so well at improving aerodynamic efficiency and downforce that it was decided to incorporate it into all 2014 Grand Cherokee models," Trostle added.
The new, one-touch liftgate delivers improved customer convenience, and features a new SRT badge that no longer carries the engine cylinder number reference. Rather than relying on a manual lever, the liftgate is operated electronically with the push of a button. For 2014, the flipper glass has been eliminated - greatly enhancing rearward visibility and reducing weight.
Standard 4-inch dual exhaust tips integrated into the lower fascia deliver the throaty exhaust note Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT enthusiasts expect from their vehicle and complete the rear styling cues.
The 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT will be available in the following exterior colors: Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Brilliant Black Crystal Pearl Coat, Deep Cherry Red Pearl Coat, Granite Crystal Pearl Coat, Maximum Steel Metallic Clear Coat and Redline Pearl Clear Coat.
Race-inspired and high-performance interior
The 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT delivers an interior that is opulent, functional and ideally suited for daily drives or more spirited performance driving on the track.
A new Uconnect 8.4AN touchscreen takes center stage - literally - and displays a wealth of information including the SRT-exclusive Performance Pages, which cite recent track times, lateral acceleration, 0-60 miles per hour (mph) times and much more. These readouts are displayed in full-color and can now be shared with other SRT enthusiasts via a built-in 3G connection.
On the center console, drivers will find a new T-handle shifter for the new eight-speed transmission that allows the driver to select between Drive and Sport shift schedules. Wrapped in grained leather, this advanced shifter further reinforces the brand's street and racing heritage. Behind the shifter is new launch control button highlighted by a color graphic - similar to the "Christmas tree"-type staging lights from the drag strip.
The standard, SRT-exclusive, leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel with a flat bottom is redesigned with a bevy of new comfort, convenience and connectivity controls and more pronounced and ergonomically efficient paddle shifters.
"SRT owners are extremely in tune with their various touch points, so we've continued to refine our SRT-exclusive steering wheel in 2014 following expert feedback from our team of engineers and professional drivers," said Klaus Busse, Head of Interior Design â€” Chrysler Group LLC. "Also key with our design team was revising the shape and placement of the new paddle shifters with a concave design on the back to ergonomically accept the shape of the driver's fingers."
The new steering wheel is designed and positioned to provide optimal view of the new gauge cluster that now features a 7-inch full-color, customizable instrument display. This new screen allows drivers to select from a multitude of layout and information to be shown in the center of the gauge cluster.
True carbon fiber trim accent sweeps across the driver's door, instrument panel and front passenger door.
The available 825-watt, 19-speaker premium SRT performance audio surround-sound system from Harman Kardon offers world premier innovation, featuring a 32-volt tracking power supply (TPS) 12-channel Class D amplifier that delivers outstanding acoustics and brings multi-dimensional, quality sound for all interior occupants.
GreenEdge speaker and amplifier technology offers superior sound quality and high sound pressure level outputs with minimum energy consumption. GreenEdge amplifiers alone outperform traditional amplifier efficiency by up to 55 percent, representing a net efficiency of more than 90 percent in some cases. The speakers are tuned for maximum efficiency and perfectly matched to the amplifier output.
The system's 19 GreenEdge high-efficiency speakers include nine tweeters, five mid-range speakers, two mid-woofers and three subwoofers located throughout the interior.
The 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT Laguna leather interior is available in two distinctive colors: Torque (black) and a new Sepia combination.
Available as part of the Sepia interior combination, a black Dynamica headliner and black pillars further accentuate SRT's upscale interior appearance.
Enhanced security, convenience and occupant safety
Uconnect Access is all-new to the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. Enabled by embedded cellular technology, the system affords direct communication with local 9-1-1 service personnel at the touch of a button - no waiting for go-between call-center operators.
In addition, the 2014 Grand Cherokee SRT showcases advanced safety features from Forward Collision Warning - which alerts the driver to rapidly approaching traffic - to Blind-spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Path detection, which aid drivers when changing lanes or in parking-lot situations.
Quality: Improving the most awarded SUV ever
How do you improve the most awarded SUV ever? The Jeep and SRT teams start by listening to their customers.
"We're very happy with the long list of product and quality accolades the Jeep Grand Cherokee has earned," said Doug Betts, Senior Vice President - Quality, Chrysler Group. "But the most important feedback comes from customers telling us what they'd like to see improved. We are constantly looking at feedback and responding with improvements."
Key upgrades for the new 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee lineup include an eight-speed automatic transmission to improve performance and fuel economy plus the newest Uconnect system that balances advanced technology and connectivity features with easy-to-use controls and voice commands.
From the driver's seat, everything the driver sees, touches - and even speaks to using voice commands - is enhanced to increase function, connectivity and responsiveness. Not only does it work better, it looks better packaged in more premium materials and elegant graphics. This includes a redesigned steering wheel that is optimized for driving position while also providing control buttons for frequently used features like radio, cruise control, phone and voice-activated commands. Customer feedback helped designers and engineers determine the ideal location for fingertip controls so that drivers could comfortably keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.
Another significant interior change for Grand Cherokee is the availability of the new Uconnect Access 8.4AN touchscreen. Connectivity and touchscreens involve rapidly changing technology and ever-increasing consumer expectations - both of which have a significant impact on the overall quality assessment of new vehicles. The Uconnect team constantly evaluates consumer feedback, placing a high priority on designing systems that are intuitive for both tech-savvy customers as well as tech-averse drivers who prefer hard knobs to adjust the climate or radio station.
For the past two years, the Jeep Grand Cherokee has earned the title as the Total Quality leader for the medium-size SUV segment by Strategic Vision. The honor is based on new vehicle owner surveys that holistically assess consumers' good and bad experiences with their new vehicle. Similarly, the Jeep team values all comments from customers - especially feedback that leads to enhanced quality and customer satisfaction.
Manufacturing: Built in Detroit
The new 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT is built at the 3-million-square-foot Jefferson North Assembly Plant (JNAP) in Detroit, which has been the site of Grand Cherokee production since its introduction in 1992. To meet consumer demand, a third crew of 1,100 workers was added at JNAP in the fourth quarter of 2012.