When I think Jeep, I think legacy more than innovation. Sure, the brand has created a considerable range of unique models since the advent of the Wrangler during World War II, but the utilitarian aspect of these vehicles calls to mind reliability, consistency, and an appreciation for the more bare bones beauty associated with the off-road and adventure.
But, when something needs fixing, the Jeep brand answers. In this case, the latest bright idea from Jeep will deliver better illumination on 2017 Cherokee, Wrangler, and Renegade models. About time! The one consistent complaint by even the most committed Jeepers and industry experts alike is the need to squint and lean when heading down dark roads. The lights currently featured on models like the Renegade are more concerned with style than chasing shadows. So, for those of you currently shopping or planning to shop today’s Jeep lineup might want to sit tight. Better and brighter days are on their way…
Among the dullest on today’s models, at least according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the halogen lights on the Cherokee and Wrangler were of particular concern. However, the newcomer Renegade will also benefit from boosted lights in 2017. Starting with the 2017 model year, drivers will be able to opt for LED (light-emitting diode) or HID (high-intensity discharge) headlights, often dubbed xenons.
If the Wrangler is your jam, you’ll be able to add LED headlights, as well as fog lights as options on the Sport and Sport S trims, while both will come as standard equipment on the mid-level Sahara and top-line Rubicon.
Now, when it comes to the Cherokee, Jeepers can already enjoy brighter views, thanks to the HID headlights available on the Limited and High Altitude trims. Not surprisingly, on the trim-topper Overland models, HID headlights come standard. But, all Cherokees – with the exception of the Sport – will feature these brighter lights in 2017, with the Sport able to come equipped with them as an option.
For those of you ready to take a walk on the wild side with the newest addition to the Jeep family – the Renegade – you, too, can already take advantage of the option HID lights, if you purchase the “Safety and Security” group, available on the Latitude, Limited, and Trailhawk trims. However, the Sport models neither have, nor will have in 2017, the HIDs as standard or optional features.
So far, we’re still awaiting the pricing on the new LED and HID headlight and foglight options. However, HID lights are more expensive than LED lights, which might be worth bearing in mind when you’re choosing between the two. In addition, and in part because of their affordability, LED lights are more common and easier to replace than their more expensive HID counterparts.
But, in defense of the added cost of HID lights, they are able to project light far further, allowing drivers a great field of vision when driving at night. Those in the know tend to favor a blend of both – relying on HID headlights and fog lights, with LEDs ideal for tinier, though no less important jobs, like turn signals and reverse indicators.
No matter which you choose, it’s encouraging to know that this bright star in the automotive industry is poised to shine even brighter next year, making it ever easier to “Go Anywhere, Do Anything.”