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Jeep Grand Cherokee vs. Chevy Blazer

1. Introduction

Now, let's talk about the Chevy Blazer. This model is one of the pioneers of the Chevrolet company, coming in the late 1990s. In terms of strength and adventure, it is not different from the Grand Cherokee, but the Blazer is more synonymous with being an American car. This is because this SUV has a large body and uses frame construction. It has fended off other car technologies like AWD that has an "auto" mode, and also has an extra package for the family. However, the features are in contrast with the Jeep's. So, it is implied that this article compares the two generations of the 20th century, and each of them is well-known as the legend of their own time. (Bani-ata, 2020)(Gomes, 2022)(Plant)(Killed and Crash)(Seniors)

The Jeep Grand Cherokee is one of the most loved SUVs in the States and abroad. This model is designated with freedom, strength, and adventure. Noted for its design, it is seen as using an exclusive figure that has curves in many parts. It is premium grade with double-colored painting and has its own signature on the typical seven grids in the front. The features of the Jeep Grand Cherokee use the highest technology in every category.

Welcome to the grand match-up of the classic SUVs of our last age. Two top-rated models that are strong favorites to all who like to have an SUV, or in other words, a full-thoughts automobile utility. The Jeep Grand Cherokee and Chevrolet Blazer are not strange to the reputation of SUV followers. Whether they are each mainstream models for the American market. So, then which one is best? What are the plus and minus points of each of them? This article tries to compare both of them with a humble opinion and fact-based information. This article is also perfect if you are in a dilemma to decide between these two. We will guide you in comparing the figures, machines, prices, etc.

2. Performance and Power

Chevy's base 2.5-liter I-4 and the 3.6-liter V6 engines are both underpowered compared to the Cherokee models. But when compared to the Grand Cherokee's V6 trims, the Blazer V6 has only slightly lower fuel economy and the ability to tow 500 pounds more. The initial trade-off of power for efficiency with Blazer's base I-4 may turn out to be a fine option for many consumers.

Both the Grand Cherokee and Chevy Blazer offer a variety of engine types, but Jeep's SUV has more options for those who prioritize performance. Jeep's base engine is a 295-horsepower V6, which is significantly more powerful than the 193-horsepower inline-four that comes standard in the Blazer. Those numbers stack up well against all that consumer-grade utility; they're close to the 310-horse V6 in the Blazer. Buick also offers a top-tier Avenir trim with a unique grille design, but pricing for that trim hasn't been announced yet. The V6 in the Grand Cherokee is the first choice for performance-minded folks, but the real action comes when you opt for the 360-horsepower Hemi V8, which is available in the Limited, Trailhawk, Overland, and Summit trims.

2.1. Engine Options

Jeep Grand Cherokee offers three different engine options: 3.6-liter V6 Pentastar engine that makes 295 hp and 260 lb-ft torque, 5.7-liter V8 engine that makes 360 hp and 390 lb-ft torque, and a massive 6.4-liter V8 that makes 475 hp on the Grand Cherokee SRT. There is also an option to buy the Trackhawk that comes with a 6.2-liter V8 Supercharged Engine, that can make a startling 707 HP! All these engines come with an 8-speed automatic transmission. The V6 engine models can tow up to 6200 lb, the bottom-level V8 engine can tow 7200 lb, while the top-level SRT and Trackhawk have a massive towing capacity of 7200 lb! The Chevy Blazer comes with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine or optional 3.6-liter V6 engine. The 4-cylinder engine provides 193 hp and 188 lb-ft torque, which also has a 9-speed automatic transmission. The V6 engine generates a solid 308 hp and 270 lb-ft of torque, which comes with an AWD system that has been considered one of the most sophisticated in its class. This can provide the SUV with the ability to get up to 4500 lb of towing capacity. By looking at engine options for both vehicles, the Grand Cherokee has noticeably larger engine choices with the SRT and Trackhawk undoubtedly stealing the show. While the Blazer only has two engine options in comparison. Different engine choices may suit different people based on what they use their car for, an example may be someone that needs to tow heavy items, which would then take them towards more powerful engine choices. In that respect, the Jeep Grand Cherokee has them covered, while the Blazer has more economical choices.

2.2. Acceleration and Top Speed

The base Grand Cherokee has a 3.6-liter V6 like the Blazer but a different version that generates 293 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. It also has an available 5.7-liter V8 with 360 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque. The Blazer had a mixed performance of acceleration time despite only having a single engine option. The Grand Cherokee maintained the 0-60 mph acceleration of 7.1 seconds, which is average for the class. The quarter-mile time with the V6 was 15 seconds, which tied the Blazer. Step up to the Hemi V8, and the numbers will surely decrease. The fastest Grand Cherokee is the SRT8. It sports a 6.4-liter Hemi V8 with an astonishing 470 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. This gets from 0-60 mph in a quick 5.1 seconds. Finally, the top vehicle of them all would be the new Trackhawk. Although this isn't even worth comparing the two, we will mention it. It has a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 with an incredible 707 hp and 645 lb-ft of torque. This thing actually ties top speed with some Lamborghinis at 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds. But given that the Trackhawk is on a level of its own, we'll just stick with the base model SRT8 and below for comparison purposes. With top speeds up to 180 mph, the Hemi versions of the Grand Cherokee will be much quicker but of course at a greater cost in gas.

Chevy has a standard 3.6-liter V6 engine that whips up 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque. It's mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. A 2.0-liter Turbo is an available option. It has great fuel mileage, but with this engine comes a much slower acceleration speed. For those who need a little more "oomph," the 3.6-liter V6 is the way to go. It is a very smooth and refined engine with plenty of power. It can accelerate from 0-60 mph in 6.6 seconds and do a quarter mile in 15.0 seconds. The acceleration numbers are the same for both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive. This is a bit slow compared to other SUVs in its class, but the trade-off will be a few miles per gallon in fuel efficiency.

3. Interior and Features

The Grand Cherokee lives up to its name, offering a lavish and comfortable interior. The materials used are upscale and of extremely good quality. The seats are comfortable, and the cabin is fairly roomy, offering enough leg space and head space for even the tallest adults. The rear passengers will have no complaints either. The rear seats recline, and there is an optional dual-screen Blu-ray DVD player. The cargo space is also adequate, being able to hold around 36 grocery bags with the rear seats up. The Chevy Blazer is smaller in size compared to the Grand Cherokee, and the interior space shows that. The cabin feels crammed, and the quality of materials used is subpar. This is very uncharacteristic of Chevrolet. However, the Blazer makes up for the lack of space and comfort with a very clever cargo management system in the rear seating area. This consists of a rail and fence system to subdivide the cargo area and a floor rail, which carries a cargo fence to aid in securing smaller items.

3.1. Cabin Space and Comfort

The Grand Cherokee Jeep's rival, the 2019 Chevrolet Blazer, comes with a similar layout with two-row seating but offers less interior passenger space. Despite its large exterior size, the Blazer's interior feels more constrained and benefits from more being a five-seater than a comfortable, spacious five-seater. The roof has been lowered to allow for a more aerodynamic design, and the result of this is having a notable decrease in headroom. Many taller rear passengers may also notice a lack of legroom in the Blazer in comparison to the Grand Cherokee. Step into a higher optioned Blazer, and you may notice there is a lack of a tangible luxury feel. Although it's easy on the eyes, a lot of the interior build seems cheap, and the upgraded leather isn't much of an improvement. As it stands, the Blazer's interior affords an average amount of comfort for an SUV in its class but falls short of the Grand Cherokee's elegance and notable comfort.

When comparing the interior in cabin space, we can see very different features from each SUV. The 2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee comes with a two-row interior featuring comfortable and supportive seats. In the rear, there is plenty of space for full-sized adults to comfortably fit with an ample amount of legroom. For those looking to add more luxury to their vehicle, a higher optioned trim level of the Grand Cherokee will come with a premium leather interior and a dual-pane sunroof. When upgrading to the higher price, the Grand Cherokee competes with luxury SUVs in terms of its interior quality, and the car itself feels very elegantly designed.

3.2. Technology and Infotainment

The inclusion of technology in cars is becoming more prevalent and is one of the main reasons to upgrade to a newer car. The 2021 Chevy Blazer incorporated a new feature of wireless Apple CarPlay and wireless Android Auto into its technology package. This eliminates the use for cords and wires to connect your phone to the vehicle for navigation and music. Together with its new 4-way phone integration feature, Bluetooth linking up to two devices at once, and multiple USB ports throughout the cabin, it makes the Blazer a no-brainer for those technology-savvy consumers. The Grand Cherokee is hot on the Blazer's heels with its Jeep Uconnect infotainment system and an 8.4-inch or 10.1-inch touchscreen. The Uconnect system allows you to control climate, navigation, and entertainment with the touch of your finger. It also comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and has an available mobile hotspot allowing wireless internet in the vehicle. For sound quality, the Blazer comes standard with a 6-speaker audio system that offers the option to upgrade to a Bose sound system. The Grand Cherokee comes with 6 speakers as well but has the standard of an 8.4-inch touchscreen and offers a 9-speaker Alpine audio system with the option to upgrade again to a 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system. Both vehicles provide exceptional sound quality, yet the varying numbers of speakers offer an array of options to meet the consumer's preference. In terms of technology, both of these vehicles offer a wide range of options, but Chevy Blazer's new feature in wireless technology may have a slight edge on the Grand Cherokee. (Shin et al., 2022)(POSTERS)(Stone, 2022)(ADMINISTRATORS, 2022)(Glenn et al., 2021)

3.3. Safety Features

As an SUV targeting more towards performance, it's no surprise that the Grand Cherokee features a more complex safety system. The Grand Cherokee comes standard with ABS, multi-stage airbags, stability control, and brake assist. In addition to common safety features, the Grand Cherokee features the option of adding active head restraints, rear back-up camera, park assist, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and a collision warning system with adaptive cruise control for an extra fee. This vast array of options can allow a buyer to equip a Grand Cherokee with a safety system exceeding the Blazer's safety features, but it will come at a cost.

As with any vehicle purchase, safety is a main concern. Both the Grand Cherokee and Blazer offer safety systems that work to prevent accidents in the first place. However, these two vehicles received quite different ratings in overall safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Blazer received an overall 5-star safety rating, the highest rating possible. The Grand Cherokee falls short of that as it received an overall 4-star safety rating. The Blazer also features the option of activating OnStar safety services for an extra fee, or used GM vehicles come with a complimentary trial period for this feature. J.D. Power and Associates rated the Blazer a 10/10 in its safety features.

4. Off-Road Capability and Towing

When it comes to towing, both vehicles have V6 engine options with similar power outputs, and the towing capacity is 6200 lbs. This matches the abilities of a properly equipped Grand Cherokee, but the Blazer's AWD system and unibody construction are still not as ideal for towing heavy loads.

Step-in height is also an important factor when considering off-road capability. The Grand Cherokee gives a commanding view of the road with 8.6 inches of ground clearance in the standard suspension and 10.8 inches in the air suspension's highest setting. The Blazer gives 7.4 inches. Overall, the Grand Cherokee's off-road capability is more versatile and ready for rugged terrain.

The Jeep Selec-TerrainTM system and air suspension allow for optimal on-road and off-road performance. The Blazer, on the other hand, has an AWD system that is more tailored to on-road performance and fuel efficiency. The Blazer has a twin-clutch AWD system that can disengage the rear wheels, making it essentially FWD. This is good for fuel economy and handling on paved surfaces, but not for off-roading. When the rear wheels are engaged, it is still not a true 4x4 system and there is no low-range gearing option. This makes the Blazer more suited for adverse weather conditions rather than off-road conditions.

Jeep is the definition of off-road strength and durability in terms of SUVs. The Grand Cherokee models are far superior to the Blazer in this category. Terrain handling ability is an important factor that must not be overlooked. Jeep vehicles have an extensive off-road lineage and the Grand Cherokee is no exception, especially in the higher trim levels where it can be quite luxurious.

4.1. Terrain Handling

Anti-lock brakes on both vehicles are a welcome addition for the off-roader. The Grand Cherokee decided to give two options for 4WD. There is the Quadra-Trac I full-time 4WD system. This system offers buyers of the Laredo V8 and Laredo standard an all-time 4WD without any kind of need to push buttons or pull levers, ergo no human interaction. The system utilizes the NV 140 transfer case and it has an open differential to divide the power between the front and rear wheels. This is an OK system but leaves much to be desired, for it will essentially send all the power to the wheel with the least traction, not ideal for no wheel slip occurs under ideal traction conditions. To give Jeep credit, they have stepped up with the Quadra-Drive system. This system provides full-time 4WD and utilizes the NV 247 transfer case, which has a center differential to divide the power evenly between front and rear axles. This time they complement the system with Vari-Lok axles on the front and rear, which will automatically transfer torque to the wheels with the most traction. If any wheel should happen to spin, it will only spin 15-20% faster, enabling the limited slip differential to manage the excessive torque. This system is definitely ideal for those who seriously venture off-road. In 2001, the NV 247 transfer case had a shift on the fly ability up to 50 mph, but Jeep has removed it from 2002 models and after to avoid confusion between the two 4WD systems.

4.2. Towing Capacity

Compared to the Jeep Grand Cherokee, the Chevy Blazer absolutely decimates the competition. The full-size Blazer (5.7L and 5.3L engine) can tow up to 8600 pounds. Blazers equipped with the 4.3L engine can tow up to 5700 pounds. The mid-size 2-door, two-wheel drive model rates in at 1500-2000 pounds depending on its upfit make or model. The mid-size four-door Blazer (4.3L engine) can tow 5500 pounds. As said before, the Grand Cherokee's towing capacity is 6500 pounds. While towing is a big priority as a part of the Jeep lifestyle, it would make sense to have a tow vehicle that can move a substantial load. The Blazer provides loads of towing torque and can really get the job done. Whether towing that Jeep to the trails or pulling a camper, the Blazer is more well-suited for the job. Finally, both the Blazer and Grand Cherokee are available with a trailer plug built into the driver's side rear wheel well. The difference is that the Blazer has provisions to mount a trailer brake in the dash. Trailer brakes are essential for safe towing, especially loads past 2000 pounds. When trailer brakes are installed, an adjustable brake control from the driver's seat can provide more or less trailer braking depending on the driving terrain. This is a significant advantage for the Blazer.


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Jeep Grand Cherokee vs. Chevy Blazer

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