Those looking to tow with a double-row Grand Cherokee just took a big hit.
Jeep Vice President Jim Morrison told the Motor Authority in September 2021 that the Grand Cherokee’s V-8 was time limited. Now, in the midst of the 2023 model year, the V-8 option for the two-row Jeep Grand Cherokee has quietly and unceremoniously disappeared.
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit Reserve
The optional 5.7-liter V8 with 357 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque is no longer available with the 2023 twin-row Grand Cherokee, according to the configurator on Jeep’s consumer side. It was a $3,295 option when it was introduced and was later increased to $3,795.
Jeep spokeswoman Kristin Starnes confirmed to the Motor Authority that consumers and dealers can no longer configure or order a two-row V-8 Grand Cherokee.
The V-8 was an option on the Upper Overland, Summit, and Summit Reserve models. According to Starnes, the premium powertrain available in the two-row Jeep Grand Cherokee is the 4xe plug-in hybrid.
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe
The 4xe is Jeep’s plug-in hybrid powertrain. First introduced in the Wrangler, Jeep offered it in the 2022 double-row Grand Cherokee WL74. The plug-in hybrid powertrain is more powerful, faster and more efficient than the V-8. Jeep rates the 4xe powertrain at 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. The electrified powertrain is good for a 0-60 mph time of 6.0 seconds in the Grand Cherokee, compared to 6.9 seconds for the V-8 version.
Morrison wasn’t shy about the future of the V-8 in the Grand Cherokee. There isn’t, he said in April 2021. Future performance variants of the Grand Cherokee will also have fewer than eight cylinders under the hood, according to the executive. Whether these models will carry the Trackhawk nameplate has yet to be determined. Jeep trademarked Xtreme Performance, but it’s unclear how that badge will be applied within the lineup.
2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L Summit Reserve 4×4
The loss of the V-8 option may affect buyers looking to tow with their double-row Grand Cherokee. The V-8 engine increased the Grand Cherokee’s towing capacity to 7,200 pounds. The V-6 model is rated for a 6,200-pound towing capacity, while the 4xe plug-in hybrid has a 6,000-pound towing capacity.
Starnes noted that the V-8 is still the premium engine option for the longer three-row Grand Cherokee L-body style, known internally as the WL75. Opting for the V-8 in the WL75 retains the 7,200-pound towing capacity, but it also requires buyers to live with a longer, taller, three-row vehicle that handles differently thanks to softer suspension tuning and a longer wheelbase.
Stellantis Hurricane twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-6
Jeep has launched a new 3.0-liter inline-6 biturbo in the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. It’s now the brand’s top-of-the-line engine, with more power than the 4xe and the 5.7- and 6.4-liter V-8s. The Turbo-6 is expected to come online soon as an option in the two-row Grand Cherokee and later the three-row Grand Cherokee L to replace the V-8 and increase towing capacity to over 7,000 pounds. Starnes would not comment on future products, including if and when the Turbo-6 will go into the Grand Cherokee.
Confusingly, the Jeep consumer page still lists the two-row 2022 Grand Cherokee model and allows buyers to configure it with a V-8. Jeep spokesman Ron Kiino confirmed to Motor Authority that the automaker will no longer build 2022 models.
Both Starnes and Kiino noted that there are a limited number of 2023 model year Grand Cherokees with the V-8 in dealer inventory.