Please Help Us Decide, Ford Explorer or Jeep Grand Cherokee for a TOAD

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Jackliz

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Hondo, TX
Howdy, Y'all.
We need a TOAD and have narrowed our choices down to a Ford Explorer or a Jeep grand Cherokee. If you own either of these vehicles, please let us know of your experiences, good, bad or otherwise.

We really want a reliable and durable vehicle. With good care, we would like it to last for a long time, say 10 years.  ;D  ;D

Thanks,
Jack and Liz
 

Ron

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Liz,

We have towed a Grand Cherokee 4WD for over 80K miles.  Instructions for towing the GC is provided in the owners manual and no modification, other than adding the towbar baseplate and wiring the lights, is required.  There are no restrictions on speed or length of distance or time towed and no requirements to run engine  put the transmission through the gears every so many miles.  The speedometer does not rack up miles while in tow.  We have towed the GC for several days in a row without ever starting the GC such has the recent trip we made from Yuma to Dallas.  Personally I like the idea of the having the towing instructions in the owners manual as it eliminates any questions as to whether the vehicle can be towed.

Aside from being easy to tow the GC is a comfortable car to drive and ride in.  If you have the inclination is makes an excellent off road vehicle to use when off roading the trails near Moab or in the desert.

I can only recall two folks that I am aware of that have towed an Explorer, one of which cut their losses and traded the Explorer in on a Jeep Liberty with in a year.  Last I knew they still had the Liberty.  I do not know any details as to why they didn't keep the Explorer. As far as I know the other folks may still have the Explorer.

I will try to answer any questions you might have regarding the Grand Cherokee.
 

Jackliz

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Hondo, TX
Howdy, Ron.

Thanks for the reply. Re:Instructions for towing the GC is provided in the owners manual and no modification, other than adding the towbar baseplate and wiring the lights, is required. 

When I asked the Jeep dealer about wiring the lights, he referred me to his parts man, who didn't know either. So, how do you wire the lights? What parts do you need and where do you get them?
Do you buy your GC new?

Thanks,
Liz
 

JerArdra

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Mar 3, 2005
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1,814
JackLiz,

With vehicles the question I always ask myself is, "Which is more important, my personal health and safety or the combination of all the other considerations."

I go for the safety!  Check the Insurance Institute crash test ratings.  The Federal Governmet tests are weak so choose mainly based on the Insurance Institute ratings.
 
JerryF
 

Ron

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Home is where we park it
Yes we bought the GC new.  I wired the lights myself using diodes.  Took the tail light covers off and wired from the tail lights to the connector I put in front.  Another way that is sometimes used is to get a kit that provides two light sockets which is installed in each tail light housing and takes the two filament bulb for the tail light and brake lights..

I took the time to wire our GC so the amber turn signal lights illuminate when the coach amber turn signal lights are on.  The brake lights come on when the coach brake lites come on and the tail lights work when the coach tail lights are on.

Both the diode and the extra bulb Kits are available at most any auto parts store and at RV supply stores.

 

Tom

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Camping World also sells diodes and kits which I happened to use on our Burb. The diodes have adhesive backs for easy mounting and spade terminals for easy connections. OTOH when I've wired prior vehicles for towing, I used diodes from Radioshack and a soldering iron.

Camping World will also do the wiring for you should you choose.
 

Phil

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Mar 5, 2005
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Jackliz said:
We need a TOAD and have narrowed our choices down to a Ford Explorer or a Jeep grand Cherokee. If you own either of these vehicles, please let us know of your experiences, good, bad or otherwise.

Liz,

I had a Grand Cherokee for 9 years and replaced it with another Grand Cherokee.  :) 

I replaced the first one because I was hit by another car while I was stopped at a stop sign.  The Jeep was ok but some RV Forum friends said I should replace it because the frame may have been injured. 

FORD=Fix Or Repair Daily
FORD=Found On Road Dead

Phil
 

Chet18013

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Full time in RV. Home is where we are parked
>>We need a TOAD and have narrowed our choices down to a Ford Explorer or a Jeep grand Cherokee. If you own either of these vehicles, please let us know of your experiences, >>good, bad or otherwise.

Would not even consider the Ford. They do not have the best reputation, nor do you see very many of them being towed. We had a Jeep Grand Cherokee for 4 years, towed it about 60,000 and drove it 74,000. Great car. Very, very easy to tow. The Blue Ox hitch is the best bet for towing. Like Ron, we have a Brake Buddy (which is now used in our new Jeep) and found it works very well with the GC. The Blue Ox folks also make a wiring kit for the GC that is real easy to install. If you get the GC, opt for the Limited or Overland model, you won't be sorry. The only thing bad about them is the MPG of the V8, ours got 16-17 during normal driving and 19-20MPG hwy driving.m --Our new toad is a Jeep Liberty Diesel Limited Trail Rated and we love it.

And if you do get the GC, I'll make you a good deal on a bra for it (see my post in the For Sale section).

Chet18013
 

dsl4us

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Mid-Michigan
--Our new toad is a Jeep Liberty Diesel Limited Trail Rated and we love it.
Chet18013

Nice! ;D ;D

If we could justify a new vehicle right now that would be tops on our list. We drove one and really liked the smooth power and quietness of the powertrain.

Dan
 
P

ploiselle

Guest
We towed a 2002 Grand Cherokee Limited for a couple years with no problems.? Unfortunately, it took a huge hit on the passenger side totaling it while my wife was driving.? Other than a small abrasion from the airbag,? my wife didn't even have a sore muscle.? ?The vehicle did as it was supposed to do and protected her by collapsing.? I replaced it with a 2005 Grand Cherokee Limited with most of the toys including GPS, dual climate control, trailer hitch, automatic high/low beams, automatic rain sensor for the windshield wipers, backup sensors and Sirius Radio.? The dealership told me that the? hemi gets extremely poor mileage.? I have the regular 8 and it get as advertised, 15 mpg around rural town and 19 mpg on the highway.

I have been told by many not to use the diodes in the 02 and 05.? They say it messes up the computer. I have been told that it? will? give false warnings on brake lights, etc being out. They recommend putting in another bulb in the taillights as suggested above.? I use magnet lights on the roof since most of the time I have a bicycle rack on the back.? You cannot see the brake lights through the bikes, especially if the bikes are covered.? If I brake heavy, the brake buddy puts the vehicle lights on anyway.

The MSRP of the 05 was almost 39k and I got it for just under 33k.? Consumer reports rates it with a very? poor reliability rating over the last 3 years compared to other mid size SUV's

Hope this helps. :)
Paul
 

Jackliz

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Hondo, TX
Howdy.

We appreciate all of the replies. We are going to take a test drive with Jeep Liberty, preferably with a diesel engine, if the dealer has one. I am concerned that the Liberty might be too small but that diesel engine is a big plus.

So far, I have 8 people in the Jeep column and 1 person in the Explorer column.  :D

Regards,
Liz
 

Jim Godward

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Liz,

Make that 9 in the Jeep colum!  VBG  My neighbor has an Explorerand I have driven it in the local area.  I would never ever buy one after that!!  I'm kind of looking at the Jeep Commander but it will be another year or so before I really get serious.  Maybe it will have a diesel by then.  BG

We love the Jeep Grand Cherokee and have had few problems, a wheel seal, the hood lifts and now the seat heaters are bad.  Other than that, it has had regular service and tires.  OOPs, we did have a problem with the brakes but that was our fault.  A panic stop and the disks warped so we had them replaced along with brakes.  Jeep split the costs so it wasn't too bad.  ABS should have prevented it but a hard stop from 80+ will do things!!  VBG

 
P

ploiselle

Guest
James Godward  wrote;
We did have a problem with the brakes but that was our fault. A panic stop and the disks warped so we had them replaced along with brakes.

Why was this your fault?
 

Betty Brewer

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Mar 10, 2005
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Jackliz said:
So far, I have 8 people in the Jeep column and 1 person in the Explorer column.? Liz

Hi Liz,

We just turned over 60,000 miles on our  2002 GMC Envoy and love it.  It has all the creature  comforts of a  luxary car (heatd seats)  and we go where all the  jeeps go on our 4 wheel drives.  GMC and Chevy are offering such good deals  on cars at this time. Why limit your choices? 

Betty Brewer
 
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