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Older Jeep Cherokee ? Yes/No

Possibly looking at an older Jeep Cherokee XJ (not necesarily a Grand Cherokee) with the square body for a daily driver, family hauler, snow vehicle to replace my old Saturn as a spare vehicle. Any of you ever have one, have any advice, or anything to watch for on these vehicles ?
Old 01-27-2016, 06:55 AM
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I had one and I vaguely recall spending a lot of money on problems with the various components in the 4WD system.
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Old 01-27-2016, 06:58 AM
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If you get the I6 the water pump can be an issue if it hasn't been replaced already.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:04 AM
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The AX15 with 4wd is the holy grail of the XJ series. Good buy. Know the limits, and you won't break much. 96+ have the external slave, but I have converted my old 94 to that set up.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:05 AM
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I had (3)
88 Laredo with 4.0/5 speed
91 Sport with 4.0HO/5 speed
96 Country 4.0HO/auto

I put well over 100K on each--and I purchased the Country with over 100K on the clock already.

Definitely get the 4.0--earlier XJs could be had with a 2.8 V6 and a 2.5(IIRC) 4. the straight 6 4.0 has plenty of power, very reliable, easy to work on.

Check for rust--floor pans/rockers were very common areas along with bottoms of doors.

If you get a manual, you will probably be replacing the slave cylinder at least once(I went through 4 combined)Manuals are hard to find though

Check the 4WD --I am trying to remember if they were vacuum for all years.

Minor niggles from what I remember--
rear struts for the hatch--it is a 1-piece hatch and you will be replacing the struts
clear coat failure and fading was common.
the rear shocks have a blind nut welded for the top mounts in a nearly-inaccessible spot--a PITA to swap rear shocks.
rear wiper were common failures
check the front door hinges for cracks

Other than that--check the normal used car items. I would love another XJ Cherokee(specifically a Briarwood or Wagoneer Limited) but the majority out there have been beat to death.

If you can find a clean one, by all means go for it.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:17 AM
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Cherokee = yes. Grand Cherokee = hell no.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:17 AM
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xj's have a following and online DIY support on par with p-cars.
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Well i had #6 adjusted perfectly but then just before i tightened it a butterfly in Zimbabwe farted and now i have to start all over again!
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:05 AM
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1999 cherokee 4.0 I6..140,000 miles. Always starts and has been very reliable, even when not used for months at a time under a carport in the cold. We have put 70k miles in 10 years without needing anything. Easy to work on. Large user knowledge base (one being www.jeepforum.com). I would recommend one.

Last edited by SpyderMike; 01-27-2016 at 09:30 AM..
Old 01-27-2016, 09:28 AM
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Google Cherokee Death Wobble
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:41 AM
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i had the bermuda triangle of car fun.

a 1984 jeep cherokee with a 4 cylinder. didnt help that i took my money and lifted it. wow..took gutless to a whole new level. i remember letting the clutch out to cross a San Francisco intersection and my rear in blew up..tore the ring pinion up..it was a regular enthusiastic launch..not a launch launch..but just an added effort to get across..

that car sucked so bad, it is the ONLY car i felt guilty about selling.
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:59 AM
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I am driving a 99 Cherokee Sport, if you get one do get the 99 or 2000. There are differences in the transmission, auto, that make it better and more hp. I like the car except for mileage, about 15 around town.

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Old 01-27-2016, 10:51 AM
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I previously had an 85 CJ7 with the 258ci I6 that had a carb on it. That motor was indestructible, and the Jeep itself was so over-built campared to other SUVs on the road those days. I want that same build quality, but with a longer wheelbase, and more (and nicer) interior room.

The 95 Saturn I have, and have been DDriving is a deleicate little machine compared to most Jeeps, it runs good, but will need a trasnmission soon, and other issues I don't want to pay for.

It's time to kick the Saturn to the curb and get something that can haul something, carry 4 people comfortably, go like stink through the snow, pull a small trailer on/off road, and be reliable. I have my diesel F250 4x4 for serious work, and my 944 for serious fun, I just need something that is in between the two for a DD.
Old 01-27-2016, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeyGon View Post

]
This Jeep is exactly what i'm looking for (color and everything) with low miles it should last for a long time.

Fuel mileage doesn't concern me that much, and most of my driving is State Routes at 55 mph.
Old 01-27-2016, 11:01 AM
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I saw a few two doors when I was looking, everything in your area had some rust. This was originally from Texas. It is the six, I didn't even look at a four.
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Old 01-27-2016, 11:08 AM
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I had a 2-door V-6 in 1985. Valve cover gaskets leaked like crazy. Back window covered in oil when on a long trip.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:04 PM
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What you need is the 99/2000 I six. almost bullet proof.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeyGon View Post
What you need is the 99/2000 I six. almost bullet proof.
Don't those have the head issue?
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:09 PM
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You really want the 1991-1996 or the 1998-2001 XJ. Avoid pre 1991 and the 1997 model year.

1991-1996:

The year, 1991 ushered in the 190-horsepower “High Output” 4.0-liter, with its improved heads and Chrysler`s in-house multipoint fuel injection system. Other changes included the Dana 35 and 44`s replacement with Chrysler`s own 27-spline 8.25 axle, the addition of a driver`s side air bag in 1995 and the addition of OBD2 in 1996. Pre-1996 Cherokees are valued for being more forgiving when it comes to transmission swaps and engine bolt-ons.

1997-2001:

Not much changed except the addition of a Dana 30 axle and larger 29-spline axle shafts. Three separate wiring harness revisions for 1997 make this year`s Cherokee the one to avoid unless you don`t mind headaches when swapping out components. For 2001, the XJ Cherokee replaced its high-pinion front axle with a low-pinion axle sourced from the TJ Wrangler.
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by URY914 View Post
I had a 2-door V-6 in 1985. Valve cover gaskets leaked like crazy. Back window covered in oil when on a long trip.
The V-6 was a terrible engine.

Not a Jeep motor. It was that awful GM V-6.

Was mercifully discontinued after a couple years, even by GM.

Last edited by tcar; 01-27-2016 at 01:20 PM..
Old 01-27-2016, 01:13 PM
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Every time I see or hear about one of those vehicles, I think of this clip.



No thanks, I'll stick with Land Cruisers.
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:26 PM
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