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Business

March 24, 2013

Jeep Grand Cherokee gets a makeover

(Continued)

Other revisions include a reshaped nose that aims to make Grand Cherokee’s front appear more substantial. Taillights are larger, with LED lights. The back spoiler is bigger and more aerodynamic, and the rear hatch re-sculpted for greater visibility. LED signature lights around slimmer head lamps announce the new model to oncoming drivers.

Inside, the 2014 Grand Cherokee gets upgraded leather upholstery and open-pore wood trim in up-scale models so equipped. Its array of added technology includes an 8.4-inch touchscreen display for controlling cabin features, and the company’s Uconnect communications link.

When a refreshed model brings along such upgraded features, the company clears out left-over inventory of the prior version simply by having a sale. Kevin Bihl of DeLuca explained that the Chrysler Group, which makes Jeep, Chrysler and Dodge passenger vehicles plus Ram trucks, currently offers tempting price cuts on 2013 Grand Cherokees.

“The 2013s are dwindling rapidly because they have some nice incentives on them,” said Bihl.

It helps that the transition from the former, 2013 SUV to the refreshed, 2014 model is gradual, he noted. It takes time for the Jeep factory in Detroit, where Grand Cherokee is built, to push out enough models to fully stock dealers’ lots all across the country. Therefore, as with most new models, when the new version of the 2014 Grand Cherokee arrived at DeLuca last week, leftovers out-numbered the replacements. Shoppers are more likely to find the configuration they want among the outgoing models.

That’s just fine with most of them, said Bihl. The dealership continues to do a brisk business with remaining, 2013 Grand Cherokees because it was such a sought-after models to begin with. That goes back to the full re-design for the 2011 model.

“There was a good bump in popularity then because the changes in the vehicle made it such a popular car,” he said. “It has continued to sell well.”

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