In the non-shocking news department we are happy to confirm a rumor that we helped start back in mid April of last year. The story was finally confirmed last week so we thought that we should also follow up on our original story to let our reader know that the 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee will have a Diesel power plant included in its list of options.
As we reported 9 months ago it will be the same 3.0-liter V6 CRD turbo diesel that is used to power the Grand Cherokee CRD model over in Europe. We can update our original story by reporting that there will be two variations of the engine sold here in North America that will boil down to how the engine is tuned. The entry diesel will feature 190hp and 325 lb-ft to torque with the top of the line diesel offering 241hp and 406lb-ft of torque.
We were disappointed to read that the new diesel engine option will be paired only with the outdated 5-speed automatic transmission that was invented during the time of the dinosaurs in the land of the Intrepid and LHS. The only reasons that we could think of Jeep still using this old tranny would be because it can handle the all of the extra torque produced by the diesel engine. However we ruled this out because the 5.7-liter V8 HEMI is dialed up to 360 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque which is only 16 lb-ft behind the top ranking diesel and it will stop using that transmission any day now. So then we thought maybe that is the only transmission sold in Europe and they will be building these CRD Jeeps there and shipping them back home. However this isn’t true either as Chrysler has also announced that they will be adding 1100 jobs to their plant that builds the Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango.
So come on Chrysler let the cat out of the bag and let us know why you’re not offering your ne 8-speed ZF transmission with this very capable engine. Fuel economy for the Jeep Grand Cherokee with the 3.0-liter turbo diesel engine is rated at 10.3 L/100 km (22.8 mpg) while driving in the city and 7.2 L/100 km (32.7 mpg) on the highway. However we wonder if they could be increased by 2-3 mpg for both city and highway driving with the extra 3 gear ratios especially the tall cursing 8th gear for use on the highway.
Chrysler has yet to reveal the pricing of the new 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD, however if you are interested the last time they offered a diesel version they tacked on a premium price tag by adding a step price premium on the engine option. As a result it was not a huge sales hit, when we think it should be. We hope that with Fiats guidance the CRD model will become a more affordable option as we can’t wait to drive one!
To read the Cherokee CRD news article from 9 months ago click here “2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee will get a New Diesel”