By Joe Bruzek on June 27, 2014
The miles are turning over pretty fast on our long-term 2014 Jeep Cherokee — it's the only fast thing about our four-cylinder, all-wheel drive model. The Cherokee has been a favorite for road trips with its SUV versatility compared to our 2014 Chevrolet Impala long-term tester. We've observed a few quirks so far, but none have required any out-of-pocket expense to fix.
The only required ownership cost outside of fuel has been the Cherokee's first oil change and tire rotation — a total of $84.80. During the last couple of months, we also spent some money on extras such as a dog kennel ($142.41) and cooler ($60), which are accessories for the Cherokee's built-in cargo rail system.
Breaking down the first service cost, $46.91 went to the oil change and its full-synthetic 0W20 oil requirement. The tire rotation's $29.95 is on the higher side for a rotation but we were in desperate need of an oil change with only 3% oil life remaining at 7,774 miles; Jeep warns not to exceed 10,000 miles on an oil change. We had a list of other items for Jeep's service center to inspect: Flash the transmission's computer with the latest software update to hopefully smooth the nine-speed automatic's operation and fix a nasty rattle that developed in the overhead console.
The overhead console only needed a few tweaks to its clips to stop the annoying rattling on rough roads, and the adjustment was covered under warranty. The Transmission Control Module updates didn't seem to improve the nine-speed's erratic behavior, which has plagued the Cherokee since before it went on sale. I put about 400 miles on the Cherokee after the update and didn't notice a big change in the transmission's lazy shifting into 2nd gear and harsh shift to 3rd. It did feel slightly more muted compared to how it shifted during the first 7,700 miles of our test, however. It's not a 100 percent fix for the odd transmission behavior, so we'll be waiting for more updates down the road.
Cars.com photo by Evan Sears
Road Test Editor Joe Bruzek covers Cars.com’s short-and long-term fleet of test cars and drives a 1998 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. Email Joe