24 Best & Worst Jeep Grand Cherokee Years (Explained)

The Jeep Grand Cherokee is a midsize SUV that was first launched as a 1993 model.

It’s known for its rugged yet upscale vibe and is available in a wide range of trims to suit a variety of budgets.

In this article, we’ll take a close look at its best and worst years…

Here’s The Short Answer To What The Best And Worst Years For The Jeep Grand Cherokee Are:

The best Jeep Grand Cherokee model years are 2023, 2022, 2020, 2019, 2017, 2016, 2010, and 2009. The worst model years of the Grand Cherokee are 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, and 1996. This is based on reviews, NHTSA stats, and problems.

What Are The Best Years For The Jeep Grand Cherokee?

2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2023 Grand Cherokee is a top pick, as one of the latest renditions, it’s also one of the most refined and offers the most modern tech features.

For 2023 the off-road Trailhawk variant was paired exclusively with Jeep’s 4xe plug-in hybrid powertrain.

The Midrange Limited and Overland variants were equipped with a bigger and better 10.1-inch infotainment display with built-in navigation. 

Overland and Summit models can also be equipped with a premium McIntosh audio system.

  • Edmunds: 4.1 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 3.7 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 80 / 100

2023 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“Never thought I’d be in a Jeep after my wonderful Explorer experience but it ticked all the right boxes. Was able to get our hands on the 5.7 V8 Hemi and it doesn’t mess around. The interior is mint and the infotainment is easy and very responsive. The McIntosh is incredible and did I mention heated/air cooled massage seats? This is what we were looking for without knowing it existed. Probably Jeep for life now.”

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The Grand Cherokee was redesigned end to end for 2022 as it marked the start of the WL 5th Gen.

With a two-row body style riding atop the new architecture, the 2022 Grand Cherokee was also the first model year to be offered with a plug-in hybrid powertrain.

The redesign features a much more contemporary style, making it instantly recognizable.

  • Edmunds: 4.3 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 3.7 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2022 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“This is my 4th Grand Cherokee, going all the way back to the beginning of the model in 1994. Have loved them all, but this 2022 Summit Reserve is a whole new world! There are not words for what an amazing vehicle this is! I’m a tech guy, and the technology in this is off the hook. V8 w / 8 speed is amazing, luxury is better than Mercedes and Audi by far, ride, handling is super good…”

2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee

With a classic look and legit off-roading chops, the 2020 Grand Cherokee is another safe bet. It is statistically the least problematic model of the  WK2 4th Generation.

For 2020 an all-new Premium Lighting Group package for the Laredo, Limited, and Trailhawk models was introduced.

This set included bi-xenon high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights for better visibility in foggy and rainy conditions.

A Power sunroof came as standard on Limited and Trailhawk trims.

New wheel designs were also introduced for the High Altitude model and the Diesel engine was discontinued.

  • Edmunds: 4.5 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.4 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 81 / 100

2020 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“I work in the Oil and Gas sector in Alberta and drive this vehicle up and down mountain roads, lease roads and over rig mat’s summer, winter, fall (Spring is typically slow for me). It handles well on highway, looks great downtown Calgary, handles great in the bush and with the right tires is glued to the road in the worst conditions. I am also an avid skier and mountain biker with a son and a dog. I have had many other SUVs (Xterra, Explorer, Cadillac, Escape) this is hands down the best one for my lifestyle…”

2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2019 Grand Cherokee added a number of enhancements, including blindspot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert as standard.

An optional 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system with a built-in navigation system was also offered.

To add to an already busy line-up, Jeep added an all-new trim known as the Limited X.

What made the model unique was its distinct front and rear bumpers, a performance hood similar to that of the high-end Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT, and unique 20-inch alloy wheels that were made to withstand most types of terrain. 

Three new colors were added to the lineup, namely Green Metallic, Sting Gray, and Slate Blue. 

  • Edmunds: 4.2 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.4 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 81 / 100

2019 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“I had my Jeep for 2 weeks now, traded in a 2011 Honda Odyssey for it. Took it on a 400 mile round trip to PA, it rode smooth & had great acceleration. I have a limited with Luxury pkg & safety group. Love the dual sunroof, & vented seats…”

2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee

With only a negligible number of complaints, the 2017 Grand Cherokee is a great all-around vehicle.

For 2017 the Trailhawk trim was added to the line-up offering a Kevlar-reinforced set of tires, red tow hooks, an adjustable air suspension system, and other off-road features.

High-end Summit models came with new leather upholstery, a lane-departure warning system, a parallel and perpendicular parking guidance system, and a revised front grille.

  • Edmunds: 4.1 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.4 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 81 / 100

2017 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“This is my third Grand Cherokee. And this by far is the best. I am in love with the updates and the comfort and obvious appearance of the Altitude. A few outward mods and I feel it represents me well driving down the street. Everything from turning radius to the feel of the wheel when driving, Stereo system, seat comfort, etc…”

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The Grand Cherokee is arguably the best all-around player in Jeeps lineup, and the 2016 model is a testament to this.

For 2016 the 3.6-liter gasoline V6 model was equipped with engine stop-start technology, as well as variable valve timing and lift to marginally improve horsepower and fuel economy.

All trims except the SRT received standard electric-assist power steering (different levels of assist as per your vehicle’s speed).

Weight reductions were also implemented across the board as a result of new aluminum suspension parts.

  • Edmunds: 4.1 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.4 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 81 / 100

2016 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“I did a lot of research and reviewed Mercedes, BMW, Volvo, Land Rover and Lexus online before narrowing things down to the Mercedes GLC and Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit due to number of factors including price, proximity to dealer, reviews, etc. My estimated budget was $50k. I test drove both cars and gave them both high marks. However, Jeep blew me away. It is a solid, quiet, well-put-together car with fit and finish as good as the Germans…”

2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee

If you’re looking for a slightly older Grand Cherokee that is proven to have impressive reliability, then look no further than the 2010 model.

This was the last iteration of the WK 3rd Generation and Jeep had ironed out most of its problems.

Despite its age, it still offers strong off-road and towing capabilities.

For 2010 the Overland variant, the 4.7-liter V8 engine, and the diesel engine options were dropped. 

  • Edmunds: 4.4 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.2 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 77 / 100

2010 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“Got the 2010 Grand Cherokee Limited 4WD with 5.7L 8cyl Hemi. Love the manly Jeep body style. The thick, heavy, solid body and all time 4WD make me feel very safe in this SUV. The 5.7L Hemi has tons of power for uphill acceleration. Handling is great thanks to the firm suspension, the 18″ wheels and the TRUE all time 4X4…”

2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2009 Grand Cherokee is another great choice if you’re looking for a slightly older model that has proven reliability.

Auto critics praised this model year for its luxurious interior, wide range of engine options (including diesel) and true off-road capability.

This was the penultimate iteration of the WK 3rd Gen that was launched in 2005 and it received hardly any complaints on the NHTSA website.

For 2009 the 5.7-liter V8 received a power and fuel economy boost whilst the SRT8 model received more leather trimmings and a performance trip computer.

  • Edmunds: 4.4 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.2 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 80 / 100

2009 Grand Cherokee, Edmunds review:

“I bought a used 2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee 2.5 years ago and I couldn’t be happier with my purchase. It is a very comfortable vehicle, drives great… with the upgraded interior (leather, navi) a rather luxurious, smooth riding truck. It’s VERY reliable, too. Currently I am at 75,000mi and other than normal maintenance (change the oil every 3,000 miles), I haven’t had any problems what-so-ever. Edit: Now up to 120,000 miles and the Jeep is running stronger than ever…”

Consumer Scores For Best Jeep Grand Cherokee Years

Below is a table that presents all the consumer ratings of the best Grand Cherokee model years from reputable vehicle websites:

Model YearEdmunds 
Consumer Rating
Kelley Blue Book
Consumer Rating
JD Power
Consumer Rating
2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.1 / 5.03.7 / 5.080 / 100
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.3 / 5.03.7 / 5.0NA
2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.5 / 5.04.4 / 5.081 / 100
2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.2 / 5.04.4 / 5.081 / 100
2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.1 / 5.04.4 / 5.081 / 100
2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.1 / 5.04.4 / 5.081 / 100
2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.4 / 5.04.2 / 5.077 / 100
2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee4.4 / 5.04.2 / 5.080 / 100

Related: 11 Jeep Grand Cherokee Facts & Statistics You Should Know

What Are The Worst Years For The Jeep Grand Cherokee?

The Jeep Grand Cherokee has had a problematic past to put it mildly, lets dive into it…

2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Beware of the clunker, according to CarComplaints.com. We think so too. The 2015 Grand Cherokee is one to avoid.

This model year was plagued with transmission issues such as rough shifting, a service shifter warning, transmission jumps to park and unable to shift out of park.

There were also a large number of complaints about the driver’s side headrest airbag deploying for no reason.

The 2015 Grand Cherokee had a total of 247 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,259 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Electronic shifting unreliable
  • Not shifting properly
  • Dashboard is falling apart
  • Head restraint deployed 

2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Avoid like the plague, according to CarComplaints.com, the 2014 Grand Cherokee is statistically the most problematic model to date, and one to steer well clear of.

Electrical issues were the most widely reported category of problems for the 2014 Grand Cherokee, these included a complete loss of all electrical power, dashboard going blank, and flashing warning lights.

The transmission was problematic also with owners stating that the service shifter warning comes on as well as slipping and sluggish shifting up and down.

Oil leaks from the engine were common also due to the oil filter housing cracking.

The 2014 Grand Cherokee had a total of 570 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 2,838 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Transmission failure
  • Shifting problems
  • Check engine light on
  • Oil leaks

2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee may not have been as problematic as some of the other WK2 4th Gen models, however it did rack up its fair share of complaints.

The most common problem was the failure of the fuel pump relay, owners also reported that despite having it replaced they still experienced engine stalling issues.

Another widely reported problem was the brake pedal going stiff which was related to brake booster failure (a device that increases the force applied from the brake pedal to the master cylinder).

The 2013 Grand Cherokee had a total of 117 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 970 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine will not turn over
  • Various electrical issues
  • Engine turns over, will not start
  • Fuel pump relay failure

2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee

CarComplaints.com bestows the 2012 Grand Cherokee with “Beware of the Clunker”, which is nothing to be proud of.

Engine stalling and the vehicle shutting off all power whilst driving was a widespread issue for the 2014 Grand Cherokee due to a faulty TIPM.

Here’s one owner’s account:

“The engine stalled completely while I was at a traffic signal, preparing to make a turn onto a busy highway. Loss of power to brakes & steering since the engine completely shut down. I shifted the vehicle into park, started the engine again, shifted into drive but the vehicle would not move. Eventually (in a matter of seconds) the vehicle lunged forward and I was able to safely drive home.”

The 2012 Grand Cherokee had a total of 320 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 2,068 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Totally Integrated Power Module (TIPM) going bad
  • Leather dashboard has dilapidated
  • Erratic electrical system
  • Fuel pump relay failure

2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2011 Grand Cherokee received an “Avoid Like the Plague” plaque from none other than CarComplaints.com.

The biggest problem with this model year was that the vehicle would not start due to engine problems related to a faulty Totally Integrated Power Module.

The TIPM is responsible for distributing power to all the electrics in the vehicle, so when it has problems so do various other components in the vehicle.

The 2011 Grand Cherokee had a total of 780 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 2,212 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Totally Integrated Power Module (TIPM) going bad
  • Engine will not start, hard to start
  • Leather dashboard is bubbling, wrinkling
  • Engine stalls, shuts down while driving

2007, 2006 and 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2007, 2006 and 2005 Grand Cherokee’s suffered from engine and electrical problems.

Owners widely reported losing all electrical power whilst driving (including speedometer and radio), being unable to start the vehicle, and engine stalling.

Here’s one owner’s testimony:

“The ignition key switch does not work properly, sometimes I cannot even start the vehicle and sometimes going down the road the vehicle just cuts off with no warning whatsoever “

  • The 2007 Grand Cherokee had a total of 74 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,400 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.
  • The 2006 Grand Cherokee had a total of 119 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,679 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.
  • The 2005 Grand Cherokee had a total of 132 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 2,589 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine stalls, shuts down while driving
  • Engine failure
  • Not shifting properly
  • Transmission slips

2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2004 Grand Cherokee was fitted with airbags that were susceptible to inadvertent deployments causing numerous injuries.

Not only were these airbags a serious safety risk, but owners were also left waiting unreasonable periods of time for the repair.

Air conditioning failure was also widely reported, here’s one owner’s take:

“Dual climate control blend doors have broken, a defect in design that affects all 1999-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited models. There is no hot air available to the passenger side of the cabin, and the passenger climate adjustment is inoperative.”

The 2004 Grand Cherokee had a total of 115 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,524 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Windows stopped working
  • Air conditioning air flow cuts out
  • Tail light out repeatedly

2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2002 Grand Cherokee faced issues similar to that of the 2004 model year – faulty airbags and a faulty A/C system.

While some owners reported the airbags did not deploy during accidents or collisions, some owners specified that the airbags deployed for no apparent reason.

The 2002 Grand Cherokee had a total of 96 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,705 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine failed
  • Power window motor failure
  • Window fell into door
  • A/C not working

2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2001 Grand Cherokee racked up its fair share of complaints due to window motors continually breaking.

Owens reported having to replace the motors on all four windows.

There were also widespread complaints about the brake rotors warping and the seats in the car becoming loose, breaking and wobbling.

The 2001 Grand Cherokee had a total of 86 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,113 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Knocking noise
  • Cracked piston
  • Gauges do not work
  • Warped rotors
  • Power windows stopped working

2000 and 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 2000 and 1999 Grand Cherokees amassed a notable amount of complaints most of which were due to the brake rotors warping.

Here’s one owners account:

“My 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee 6 cyl. 4×4 has had extensive rotor problems leading to replacement of rotors at 19,000 (covered by dealer), 40,000 (at my expense), at 63,520, again at my expense, at 90,000, and now again, replacing all 4 rotors at 363. 50 per set at 112,000 miles.”

Engine overheating issues were also widely reported which was attributed to a faulty cooling fan.

Owners also reported that the vehicle would shift by itself into reverse which caused a number of accidents.

  • The 2000 Grand Cherokee had a total of 74 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,838 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.
  • The 1999 Grand Cherokee had a total of 61 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 2,314 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine stalls, shuts down while driving
  • Engine failure
  • Brakes pulsate
  • Rotors warped

1998, 1997 and 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

The 1998, 1997 and 1996 Grand Cherokee’s all shared one thing in common – transmission problems.

Owners widely reported that their vehicle would move on its own after it had been put in park.

Here’s what they had to say:

“Jeep was in “park” in the garage – within 10 minutes of parking the Jeep rolled out of the garage and down the driveway impacting a parked vehicle on the street. The Jeep was found to be in park after the crash.”

“My car was running and it park, it automatically shifted into reverse, had my child in the car was adjusting his seat belt and I had to jump back into my car and step on the park. Narrowly missed rolling into the path of a semi-truck.”

  • The 1998 Grand Cherokee had a total of 46 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,335 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.
  • The 1997 Grand Cherokee had a total of 38 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,415 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.
  • The 1996 Grand Cherokee had a total of 26 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,228 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine stalls, shuts down while driving
  • Transmission failure
  • Death wobble
  • Engine hesitation during acceleration
  • Leaking evaporator
  • Differential failed

Related: Where Are Jeep Grand Cherokees Made? (Solved & Explained)

What Years Have The Most Complaints?

Listed below are the number of reported complaints and problems for each model year of the Grand Cherokee. 

Model YearComplaints
(CarComplaints.com)
Problems
(CarProblemZoo.com)
2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee01
2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee277
2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee11262
2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee7104
2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee16173
2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee45619
2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee75333
2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee68305
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee2471,259
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee5702,838
2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee117970
2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee3202,068
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee7802,212
2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee39144
2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee33173
2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee84910
2007 Jeep Grand Cherokee741,400
2006 Jeep Grand Cherokee1191,679
2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee1322,589
2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee1151,524
2003 Jeep Grand Cherokee48840
2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee961,705
2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee861,113
2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee741,838
1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee612,314
1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee461,335
1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee381,415
1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee261,228

What Problems Do Jeep Grand Cherokee Have?

  • Totally Integrated Power Module (TIPM) going bad
  • Engine will not start, hard to start
  • Electronic shifting unreliable
  • Leather dashboard is bubbling, wrinkling
  • Engine stalls, shuts down while driving
  • Transmission failure
  • Shifting failure
  • Check engine light on
  • Erratic electrical system
  • Not shifting properly

What Are The Best Alternatives To The Jeep Grand Cherokee?

Listed below is how the Grand Cherokee fares against its closest rivals.

Make & ModelScoreMSRPFuel Economy (MPG)
Kia Telluride8.6$33,390 – $45,190City: 19 – 20 /Highway: 24 – 26
Ford Palisade8.6$33,600 – $48,990City: NA / Highway: NA
Honda Passport8.4$37,870 – $45,430City: 19 – 20 /Highway: 24 – 25
Mazda CX-98.4$35,280 – $47,210City: 20 / Highway: 26
Hyundai Santa Fe8.3 $27,200 – $43,110City: 21 – 25 / Highway: 25 – 28
Chevrolet Traverse8.3$33,700 – $53,400City: 17 – 18 / Highway: 25 – 27
Honda Pilot8.3$38,080 – $51,870City: 19 – 20 /Highway: 26 – 27
Jeep Grand Cherokee8.3$39,000 – $61,675City: 14 – 19 /Highway: 22 – 26
Buick Enclave8.1$42,800 – $57,100City: 17 – 18 /Highway: 25 -26
Dodge Durango8.0$36,995 – $68,195City: 13 – 19 /Highway: 19 – 26
Volkswagen Atlas8.0$33,635 – $51,505City: 17 – 21 /Highway: 23 – 25
Subaru Ascent8.0$32,295 – $45,445City: 20 – 21 /Highway: 26 – 27
Kia Sorento8.0$29,590 – $43,190City: 21 – 24 /Highway: 25 – 29
Toyota Highlander7.9$35,405 – $49,510City: 20 – 21 /Highway: 27 – 29 
Nissan Murano7.7$33,310 – $46,560City: 20Highway: 28
Ford Explorer7.7$33,745 – $55,995City: 16 – 27 /Highway: 23 – 28
GMC Acadia7.5$34,800 – $48,600City: 19 – 22 /Highway: 26 – 29
Chevrolet Blazer7.3$33,400 – $44,000City: 19 – 22 /Highway: 26 – 29
Toyota 4Runner7.1$37,605 – $52,420City: 16 / Highway: 19
Ford EdgeNA$36,145 – $44,945City: 19 – 21 /Highway: 25 – 28
Jeep Grand Cherokee LNA$40,325 – $62,300City: 18 – 19 /Highway: 25 – 26
Nissan PathfinderNA$34,640 – $49,040City: 20 – 21 /Highway: 25 – 27

Source: cars.usnews.com, edmunds.com

Related: Jeep Grand Cherokee Tune-Up & Maintenance Costs (Complete Guide)

References

https://www.caranddriver.com/jeep/grand-cherokee

https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/jeep/grand-cherokee

https://www.carcomplaints.com/Jeep/Grand_Cherokee/2022/

https://www.carproblemzoo.com/jeep/grandcherokee/

https://www.edmunds.com/jeep/grand-cherokee/

https://www.kbb.com/jeep/grand-cherokee/

https://www.jdpower.com/cars/2021/jeep/grand-cherokee

Author:

  • Ian Sawyer

    Growing up with a father who was a mechanic I had an appreciation for cars and motorcycles from an early age. I shared my first bike with my brother that had little more than a 40cc engine but it opened up a world of excitement for me, I was hooked. As I grew older I progressed onto bigger bikes and...

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