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Well into its second generation, the Jeep Cherokee is a small SUV that seems to get a lot of things right. For example, if you want to take it off-roading, you can do so without worrying about incurring damage to the undercarriage. If this is what you want, then the Trailhawk trim is a great choice.
Of course, not all trim levels are created the same. The Limited trim finds a steady balance between luxury and affordability while the line-topping Overland trim is loaded to the brim with all the creature comforts you could ask for in a vehicle. Even the base Latitude has a lot going for it despite running on an under-powered engine.
The biggest downfall that you will find on all of the trim levels is their amount of cargo space. It is meager compared to other small SUVs with just 24.6 cubic feet when all seats are in place. You can fold the rear seats down somewhat flat, but the space is still limited. On the plus side, the floor's adjustable lift feature makes it exponentially easier to load and unload bulky items from the cargo area.
So, which trim is right for you? Which ones should you skip over in your quest? Let us take a more in-depth look at the 2019 Jeep Cherokee by comparing the different trim levels, starting with the base Latitude and Latitude Plus.
Compare the 2019 Jeep Cherokee Latitude vs Latitude Plus - What is the difference?
As far as base trims go, the Latitude has quite a bit to offer. Powered by a standard 2.4-L inline-4 engine paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission, the Latitude gets 180 hp and 171 lb-ft of torque. While front-wheel drive comes standard, all-wheel drive is an option on this trim level. The Latitude Plus has the same engine configuration, so you will not experience much of a difference in terms of power and performance.
On the outside, the two trim levels look fairly similar. They both ride atop 17-inch wheels. However, the painted aluminum wheels on the Latitude are upgraded to satin carbon aluminum wheels on the Latitude Plus. The Latitude Plus gets an extra exterior color option called Granite Crystal Metallic Clear Coat paint. Both have standard automatic headlamps, front LED fog lamps, turn-off time delay on the headlamps, LED daytime running headlamps, chrome grille surrounds, a single hidden exhaust tip, and black MIC fascia applique. The mirrors are power-heated, but those on the Latitude Plus have a manual fold-away capability. Also, the Latitude Plus has the option for a full sunroof whereas the Latitude does not.
On the inside, things are rather different. While the Latitude has a 6-way manually-adjustable driver seat, the Latitude Plus gets upgraded to an 8-way power-adjustable one that has 4-way power-adjustable lumbar support. They do have many of the same convenience features, but the Latitude Plus is adorned with a leather-wrapped shift knob and steering wheel. Ambient lighting also comes standard once you upgrade to the Latitude Plus. You can also opt for the universal garage door opener on the Latitude Plus.
In terms of infotainment, the two trims are similarly equipped with a 7-inch touchscreen display with the Uconnect 4. They also have the same 6-speaker audio system. There is a USB jack for plugging in portable devices. Smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto comes standard, as does an integrated voice command system with Bluetooth connectivity. The most noticeable variation between the two is that the Latitude does not have steering wheel-mounted audio controls like the Latitude Plus. Also, SiriusXM is not available on the Latitude.
One of the biggest reasons that drivers might want to upgrade to the Latitude Plus is that, unlike the Latitude, it comes with a standard blind-spot monitoring system. It also has the Keyless Enter 'n Go feature which unlocks all of the door locks with the simple grab of a door handle or by using the trunk button when you have the key fob close enough to the vehicle. Other than that, most of the safety features that come on the Latitude are also on the Latitude Plus.
Compare the 2019 Cherokee Latitude Plus vs Altitude Trims. What is the difference?
For just about $1,000 more, you can move up the trim level ladder to the Altitude. This trim is powered by the same 2.4-L engine that can be found in the Latitude and Latitude Plus. There are a number of other differences between the two trims though. The Altitude rides atop upgraded 18-inch five-spoke glossy black aluminum wheels. Dual bright exhaust tips are available as an option if you want something snazzier than the hidden single tip. You can also distinguish this trim by its glossy black grille surrounds.
The interior of the Altitude is essentially the same as the Latitude Plus in terms of design. The seats, upholstery, trims, and lighting tend to all carry over. Also, the infotainment and safety features that you get on the Latitude Plus come on the Altitude. Essentially, you are just paying for a few exterior design upgrades.
Compare the Cherokee Altitude vs Trailhawk - What is the difference?
The Trailhawk is where Jeep really shakes things up. This trim is built for off-roading, as its name tends to indicate. The Trailhawk comes in your choice of ten color options and sits on top of 17-inch wheels. It can be purchased as a front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive can also be equipped. Of course, if you plan on doing a lot of off-roading, all-wheel drive is the way to go on the Trailhawk.
There are some exterior differences from the lower trim levels that make the Trailhawk stand out. The red tow hooks up front create a nice contrast against the seven-slotted black grille, and the restyled front fascia has a somewhat more athletic appearance. The accents around the front fascia also help to set it apart from the rest of the line-up.
Under the hood, you get the upgraded 3.2-L V6 engine powering the Trailhawk. Having this boost of power makes a difference when you do decide to take the vehicle off the beaten path. Another feature found on the Trailhawk that helps with off-roading is the all-new Uconnect Off-Road Pages. These pages provide information on important off-roading elements such as the angle of the front wheels, drivetrain mode, and land altitude.
The one downside to driving the Trailhawk is that, since it is optimized for off-roading performance, its fuel economy is not as good as the other trim levels. Whereas the Altitude gets up to 22 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway when equipped with front-wheel drive, the Trailhawk only gets 18 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway.
Compare the Cherokee Trailhawk vs Limited Trims. What is the difference?
The Limited represents a step up in luxury on the 2019 Jeep Cherokee. Unlike the highly athletic Trailhawk, the Limited gains many standard comfort and convenience features. It comes with heated front seats, power front bucket seats that are upholstered in premium leather, and memory capabilities for the driver's seat, outside mirrors, and radio. Dual-zone climate control is standard, as is a heated steering wheel.
The Limited comes with an 8.4-inch touchscreen display with the Uconnect infotainment system. Instead of the 6-speaker sound system found on the lower trim levels, the Limited gets a stellar 9-speaker upgrade that includes a subwoofer. GPS navigation and HD radio are optional add-ons, as is a five-year subscription to SiriusXM Radio.
Other than the addition of those creature comforts, the Limited is fairly similar to the other trim levels below it. Nothing is extraordinarily different on the outside save for some minor design elements on the front fascia.
Compare the 2019 Cherokee Limited vs High Altitude - What is the difference?
Up next in the trim level ladder is the High Altitude. The High Altitude is almost entirely similar to the Limited on the inside. There are a differences on the exterior. One is that the High Altitude is given 19-inch granite crystal aluminum wheels. Also, the dual bright exhaust tips come standard on the High Altitude, as do gloss black roof rails.
The most significant changes between the Limited and High Altitude exist in the infotainment realm. On the High Altitude, you get a standard five-year SiriusXM subscription, GPS navigation, HD radio, and the Uconnect 4 with Navigation. Of course, you also get everything else that comes standard on the Limited.
Compare the 2019 Cherokee High Altitude vs Overland - What is the difference?
Finally, we come to the line-topping Overland trim level. This is the height of luxury for a non-luxury vehicle made by Jeep. It prices at about $2,000 over the High Altitude. It sits on top of chic 19-inch polished aluminum wheels and comes standard with the powerful 3.2-L V6 engine.
In addition to all of the interior design elements found on the High Altitude, the Overland gets front seats that are both heated and ventilated. The second row of seats comes with a fore-and-aft adjustment capability, which can lend extra leg room when and where it is needed. As a nice bonus for passengers, the rear seats are also heated.
On the exterior, things get snazzy with chrome grill surrounds and an optional full sunroof. There is also a foot-activated, hands-free power liftgate that makes loading and unloading items from the cargo area exponentially easier. The only other significant differences from the High Altitude are that the Overland has an acoustic windshield, acoustic laminated glass on the front door, a charcoal painted texture on the grille, and a shark fin antenna that is painted the same color as the rest of the body.
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Which One Should You Choose?
Choosing a trim from the 2019 Jeep Cherokee line-up might be a bit easier said than done. There are a lot of good options to choose from, and a lot of the differences are really more like minor nuances. In the end, the choice you make should boil down to what you plan on using the Cherokee to do.
If you want a comfy daily driver with a few extra creature comforts, the Limited trim is the way to go. You get the most value this way, as this trim comes with a lot of desirable features without the Overland's hefty price tag. Of course, if you are looking for something more adventurous and athletic, the Trailhawk is your trim. Its off-roading capabilities are excellent, and it is an all-around exciting small SUV.
• Compare the 2018 Jeep Cherokee Trim Levels