This camouflaged Jeep Cherokee prototype running on a test track provides a first look at the Cherokee's facelift due for the ’17 model year.
The prototype was heavily camouflaged, but it appears that the updated Cherokee will retain much of its polarizing design language that first debuted on the current model in spring 2013. The design was meant to be edgy in hopes that it would still look timely near the end of the Cherokee's expected six-year lifecycle. Since sales of the Cherokee have been suitably strong, it appears that Jeep stylists are sticking with that strategy.
The test vehicle had a placard that announced that "VRT: Electronic Throttle Control" was being tested. An online search shows that some Cherokee owners have experienced warnings about faulty electronic throttle control, and a technical service bulletin has been issued with a reported "2289 Software Update." If this is an ongoing problem, perhaps Jeep is looking to the midcycle refresh to offer a more comprehensive fix. It's unclear if the work being done on this Cherokee prototype has anything to do with the lessons learned during the recall and delay of the new Jeep Renegade, which uses the same nine-speed automatic transmission.
Photo credit: KGP Photography