Used Jeep Cherokee 4x4 2001 - 2008 review

Category: Large SUV

It's a great off-road workhorse, but it's also unrefined and uneconomical

Jeep Cherokee 4x4 (01 - 08)
  • Jeep Cherokee 4x4 (01 - 08)
  • Jeep Cherokee 4x4 (01 - 08)
Used Jeep Cherokee 4x4 2001 - 2008 review
Star rating

What's the used Jeep Cherokee 4x4 like?

This Cherokee is far better than the one it replaced. However, it still carries on the tradition of go-anywhere Jeep motoring, both good and bad.

First, the good news. It is a superbly capable tow car and workhorse, and it will keep going long after most rivals get stuck off-road. There's plenty of space for four inside its well-equipped cabin, and fitting five isn't too much of a push.


It's a great off-road workhorse, but it's also unrefined and uneconomical

  • The Cherokee has excellent off-road ability and a good driving position
  • it's roomy, too
  • The diesel engines are noisy, the petrol engines are thirsty
  • and running costs are high

It's practical, as well. The driving position and large front seats are still comfortable after several hours behind the wheel, and there's a clear view all round, so it's easy to park. The boot's a useful size, too, the rear bench folds easily and the split tailgate has an independently opening glass upper half.

The bad? The Cherokee feels coarse and crude on the road, with a jiggly and unsettled ride, It's also noisy at speed and less agile than many competitors. Of the four available engines, none is really a first choice.

Ownership cost

What used Jeep Cherokee 4x4 will I get for my budget?

How much does it cost to run a Jeep Cherokee 4x4?

Servicing at main dealers won't be cheap - a Nissan X-Trail, Land Rover Freelander and Honda CR-V are all likely to cost less. However, data from Warranty Direct suggests you could cut the labour bill by more than half by going to a reputable independent instead.

If the Cherokee does go wrong, it isn't cheap to fix, either, and it's likely to be off the road for a few days.

Fuel costs will eat into your wallet, too. The 3.7 V6 returns an official average of just below 22mpg and will give significantly less in town or if you work it hard. The 2.4 petrol should nudge that up to 27mpg, but the diesels are slightly better - 28-29mpg for the 2.8 CRD and 31-32mpg for the 2.5 CRD.

Insurance will also take its toll - it's group 15 for all but the V6, which is 16.

Our recommendations

Which used Jeep Cherokee 4x4 should I buy?

While the 3.7 is better than the 4.0 six-cylinder engine of the previous Cherokee, it's no ball of fire. You have to work it hard to make reasonable progress, so it often sounds strained. It's also very thirsty. The four-cylinder 2.4 guzzles slightly less, but it isn't the most refined or the strongest performer.

So, one of the diesels is the default option, and the 2.5 and 2.8 engines both churn out a hefty amount of pull, which is ideal for towing, off-roading and easy-going everyday response. They are far easier on fuel than the petrols, but they still get noisy when revved.

All Cherokees are well equipped even in Sport spec, the entry-level trim, with twin front airbags, anti-lock brakes, air-con and electric windows. Limited trim brings alloy wheels, sat-nav, cruise control and body-coloured bumpers.

Jeep dealers tend to keep hold of the best used ones, but 4x4 specialists turn up some choice examples, too.


What alternatives should I consider to a used Jeep Cherokee 4x4?