The Jeep brand has introduced the fifth-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee, including the first available plug-in hybrid powertrain, the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe. The all-new Jeep Grand Cherokee will arrive in Jeep dealerships in North America in the fourth quarter of 2021. The Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe is scheduled to arrive in North America early in 2022 and in global markets later that year.
Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk 4xe
Available in the Grand Cherokee Limited, Trailhawk, Overland, Summit and Summit Reserve, the 4xe propulsion system combines two electric motors, a 400-volt battery pack, 2.0-liter turbocharged, four-cylinder engine and TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. The 4xe PHEV technology targets an estimated 25 miles (40 km) of all-electric range and 57 MPGe and offers:
375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque
Quadra Trac II 4x4 system with two-speed transfer case and 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio
47.4:1 crawl ratio
6,000-lbs (2,720 kg) 4xe max towing capability
Overall, the 4xe system delivers 375 horsepower (280 kW) and 470 lb-ft (637 N·m) of torque. The Grand Cherokee 4xe, targeting an estimated 25 miles (40 km) of all-electric range, returns an estimated 57 MPGe and has an estimated total range of more than 440 miles (708 km).
The fuel-efficient 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 engine is part of Stellantis’s Global Medium Engine family. The high-tech, direct-injection engine uses a twin-scroll, low-inertia turbocharger mounted directly to the cylinder head. Efficiency is enhanced via the use of electric power steering and an electrically driven air conditioning compressor, removing those loads from the engine.
The conventional alternator is replaced with a high-voltage, liquid-cooled motor-generator unit. Connected to the engine crankshaft pulley via a belt, the motor-generator spins the engine for nearly seamless, fuel-saving, start-stop operation and generates electricity for the battery pack.
A larger high-voltage motor-generator is mounted in the transmission, replacing the torque converter. Two clutches manage power and torque from the e-motor and engine.
A clutch is mounted between the engine and the motor. When the system operates in electric-only mode this clutch is open so there is no mechanical linkage between the engine and the e-motor. When the clutch is closed, combined torque from the 2.0-liter engine and the e-motor flow through the automatic transmission. A variable clutch mounted behind the e-motor manages engagement with the transmission to improve drivability and efficiency.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe carries a 400-volt, 17-kWh EV battery. The battery units and controls mount underneath the vehicle, packaged under the floor and protected by a series of skid plates.
The battery pack system includes a dedicated heating and cooling circuit to keep the battery at its optimum temperature for best performance. The system includes a dedicated heater unit and a chiller that uses the Grand Cherokee’s air-conditioning refrigerant to reduce coolant temperature when needed.
The Grand Cherokee’s 4xe system also includes an Integrated Dual Charging Module (ICDM) that combines a battery charger and a DC/DC converter in a single, compact unit and a Power Inverter Module (PIM) that is reduced in size. These are mounted under the body and protected with steel shields.
All high-voltage electronics are sealed and waterproof. The Trail Rated Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe is capable of water fording up to 24 inches (61 cm).
The charge port is beneath a push-open/push-close cover on the left front fender for convenient nose-in parking at charging locations. The charge port includes LED indicators of charging status. An LED battery level monitor sits on top of the instrument panel, making it easy to check battery state of charge at-a-glance during charging.
With E Selec modes, the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe driver can tailor the hybrid powertrain to best suit each trip, whether it be commuting, off-roading or long-distance travel.
The driver selects the desired powertrain mode via buttons mounted on the instrument panel, to the left of the steering wheel:
Hybrid: Blends torque from the electric motor and gas engine. The powertrain will optimize battery and engine power to deliver the best combination of fuel efficiency and performance.
Electric: Operates on zero-emission electric power only until the battery reaches the minimum charge or the driver requests more torque (such as wide-open throttle), which engages the engine.
eSave: Prioritizes the engine, saving the battery charge for later use. The driver can also choose between Battery Save and Battery Charge during eSave via the Hybrid Electric Pages in the Uconnect 5 monitor.
Regardless of the mode selected, the Grand Cherokee 4xe operates as a hybrid once the battery nears its minimum state of charge.
The driver information display and main touchscreen include Eco Coaching Pages. The Eco Coaching Pages let owners monitor power flow and see the impact of regenerative braking, schedule charging times to take advantage of lower electric rates and view their driving history with a detail of electric and gasoline usage.
Regenerative braking is part of the 4xe system. When the driver steps on the brake pedal, the powertrain control engages the maximum available regenerative braking, up to 0.25 g, from the electric motors to slow the vehicle, augmented with the Grand Cherokee’s traditional friction brakes. With 4x4 engaged, all four wheels feed torque for regenerative braking, maximizing the energy recovery. Electricity from regenerative braking is fed to the battery pack to maintain or increase the state of charge.
A driver-selectable Max Regen feature deploys a more assertive regenerative braking calibration when the vehicle sees zero throttle input from the driver (coasting). Max Regen can slow the Grand Cherokee 4xe faster than standard regenerative braking and generate more electricity for the battery pack.