We all know that when it comes to Jeeps and overcoming obstacles, they have it covered. Whether it be climbing rocky mountains, crossing streams or rivers, or snow blanketed highways, Jeeps are made for any terrain. That’s the wonderful thing about Jeeps, they can go anywhere and do just about anything, even save you from another winter getting stuck in the snow. While there is still some time to bide before we get hit with our first storm, it seems like the right time to start saving for your preferred winter vehicle: a used Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Winter is Coming
As the days get shorter and the colder breeze blows the leaves off the trees, we know that inevitable change of seasons is right around the corner and with it, the looming clouds and falling snow.
Choosing a lightly used Jeep for winter driving is always a good choice, be it a Wrangler, or a Liberty or sporty Trailhawk, but none come with the creature comforts that Grand Cherokee’s are built for. Providing premium in luxury while ensuring safety at every corner with traction control and 4WD, the Grand Cherokee takes winter and smiles back with a warm blanket and hot cocoa.
Whether it be dashing through the snow or pulling an open sleigh, rest assured, your Jeep will be equipped for the challenge.
As the best pick for midsize SUV’s, newly used Jeep Grand Cherokees are the perfect fit for those who desire sport, utility and comfort all in one package, as the Grand Cherokee truly encompasses all three. Newly used Grand Cherokees come available in three four-wheel drive options that will help navigate you through the toughest winters.
A newly used 2012 Grand Cherokee sits tall on 20” wheels as a midsize SUV. A redesign in the 2011 year allowed the Grand Cherokee to retain its off-road capability while improving its on-road performance. Most models after this year come with Jeeps Selection Terrain System which maximizes traction with driver-selection settings that include auto (normal), snow, sport, sand/mud and rock. This makes driving in inclement weather be it heavy rain, sleet, snow or ice happen with much more ease and confidence. Made with adjustable air suspension which allows the Grand Cherokee to be raised 3.8 inches higher is perfect when snow conditions are deep.
While you may use your Wrangler more for off-roading during the summer months, like most SUV’s or Jeeps, your Wrangler handles snow laden climates very well. As with any vehicle regardless of brand, if you live in a geography that dumps feet of snow on you, snow tires will be the best defense against getting stuck this winter. Though some Wrangler drivers leave their mud tires on for winter driving, they are not made to handle the conditions that snowy roads and temperature bring.
Any lift added to your Wrangler will help when trudging through deep snow, but it isn’t entirely necessary. Four wheel drive will be what you’ll need to get through most situations.
An ongoing debate about whether a two or four-door configuration is best in winter driving. A four door is going to be heavier, sturdier and have a wider and longer wheelbase which helps to control the jeep. Four doors are also going to be more expensive so if you don’t need four doors, a two-door will work just as well in the snow. It really comes down to what works best for your life.
Wrangler Polar Edition
In 2014, Jeep introduced the Polar. Specifically designed for winter weather climates, it’s based off the Sahara trim package.Its unique badge with latitude and longitude location where the most severe temperature on Earth was recorded in Antarctica and serves as a reminder that Jeeps are meant to go everywhere on this planet. The Polar Edition is available in both two and four-door configurations.
Coming standard is a Trac-Lok anti-spin rear differential that can be combined with available electronic locker inside the Dana 44 axle. Up front, a Dana 30 is turned by the part-time Command-trac NV241, two-speed transfer case with a 2.72-to-1 low range. Automatic climate control, heated front seats, always appreciated in the freezing climates, and Electronic Vehicle Information Center are all included and smart for winter driving. Same drivetrain as other Wrangler’s, 3.6L Pentastar V6 with 285 horsepower and 260 lb/ft of torque.
While this is a small crossover CUV, the Patriot offers best-in-class 4×4 capabilities which will maximize your efforts in the snow. Also offering the Selec-Terrain Traction Control which allows your Jeep to use the best configuration for the specific road conditions. Its drivetrain and wheelbase are going to provide better handling and security while driving in winter conditions.
Patriot and Compass
As both are in the small crossover SUV segments and made more for fuel efficiency and running around town, but because they’re Jeeps they also excel in off-roading capabilities. What’s easy to forget about these smaller beauties is that they do have excellent all-wheel-drive and all terrain selections which allow for optimum maneuvering in the snow. Because they’re a bit smaller, snow tires will add more traction. Extra safety packages like the All Weather Capability Group are also available.
Use Your 4WD
All Jeeps come equipped with 4WD capabilities, but do you know when to use it? You can use the full-time 4WD setting at all times on all surfaces. On snow and ice, you may prefer to use part-time setting as it has better climbing abilities on steep slippery road and driveways.
However, part-time 4WD does have slightly negative effects on steering, so switch back to full-time 4WD when normal traveling. When snow is deep and speed is low, part-time 4WD is good to use, but be gentle on the throttle so as not to make the tires spin. Part time low and part time high are to be used on off-road settings, but snow does not qualify as off-road.
Smart Weather Driving
What’s most important to remember about driving Jeep SUV and CUV’s in any inclement weather is how you drive. Outfitting your vehicle with the proper gear to handle the conditions of the road will keep you secure, but you then have to drive safely to ensure the gear can properly keep you safe. Snow tires are key in winter, but they don’t mean you get to avoid the fact that there are slick road surfaces. Jeeps will always provide buyers with the best choices for gnarly terrain, but you must use your head first.
Trail rated Jeeps provide extra assurance that in any condition are going to be equipped with exactly the right parts to detail any driving situation. Ready yourself for all that this upcoming season has to offer by heading to your Faricy Jeep dealer and checking out their winter Jeep selection.
While we all know that driving in snowy weather can sometimes be terrifying, there are those of us who, after spending enough time learning how, have grown a comfortable fondness of it. Like anyone with a Jeep, truck or large SUV, safe traveling in the snow isn’t always about the vehicle you’re driving, but knowing how to do it. You’ll always be best learning in Jeep and you’ll always feel the most confident in your Jeep.
So, why not enjoy it? Go ahead! Get out there and have fun in the snow again!