We also had a CMax SEL . Unfortunately 2013 CMax 's had some type of parasitic battery drain in 12V system that Ford Engr seemed never able to resolve. We found CMax (even general use, not only toad) was just too unreliable (our opinion).
We chose a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland. The newest 'Cherokee' wasn't out yet when we bought the JGC, but since we had hitch rating and DP capable of towing JGC (~5k weight) we wanted the extra cargo / interior space the JGC provides.
As for in-dash navigation, our JGC is a Garmin based software I believe. The previous post re: cost for update is correct, but we will only "purchase" these figure every 2-3 yrs. and feel this will do fine for our needs. FYI - we do not love the in-dash MH nav system on our MH, and instead bought a Garmin RV760 LMT. Again, as prev posted said, the portable 760 has RV and Auto modes, and should you choose could be used in any vehicle & free updates. Our observation are that any nav system may have a blip w routing that you may not choose to follow. Nav system preference seem to be whatever your individual preference.
Our Overland has added "collision avoidance package.". And the break-away switch mounted on front grill does NOT interfere at all w the collision "eye" which is centered in JGC grill.
We have Blue Ox Aventa LX tow bar, BO base plate, and use Air Force One supplemental brake. Very happy with all of these. BTW - on the JGC BO baseplate, the OEM chrome tow hooks on front of JGC remove and that is where the BO baseplate uses/removable pins for attach point of Aventa tow bar. If we were to cease toad use and remove baseplate someday, the chrome tow hooks go right back on JGC as they looked OEM.
Setup for JGC to tow has been easy, no worry about "allowable tow speed, distance, or hours.". CMax had limits in all these categories, as you probably are aware. Some Jeep models have different transmissions, be sure to read manual for "recreational towing" on whatever Jeep model you decide to buy. JGC for flat towing must have either Quadra-Trac II (R) / Quadra-Drive II (R) on a four wheel drive model. (Presume smaller "Cherokee" models will, too?) Have your salesperson demo the "flat towing steps" before you sign to buy .. we did that just to make sure it was as easy to set for towing & return to normal driving mode as manual described. It is! Steps to set up / return to driving take about 1-2 minutes...EZ-PZ
The Overland JGC 4x4 has hydraulic height lower/raise settings/normal ride height, and an aero height for fuel eco mode highway driving (~52 mph +) ? I would suppose similar on Trailhawk? However, we haven't used ours for off-road, so cannot comment on that for your questions there. Maybe others who enjoy off-roading in their Jeep toads will chime in w more info.
FWIW - will also say that our Overland JGC has a digital dash instrument panel with "modes" that will let you see the 4 wheel / independent suspension articulation views in real time. Would suppose this visual is also part of Trailhawk OEM equipment.
BTW, we love the simplicity of AF1 for aux toad braking. Pricey, but so worth it! (On CMax we 'tried' BO Patriot brake, hated having the whole put in, setup, take out, and 'alarm for extended braking time' if Patriot tipped applying brake on toad after a bump on road or other
). With AF1, to get ready to tow: connect the air line to DP then toad, connect break-away line, then push on DP brake pedal a couple times, ....easy, quick, and also proportional braking. When you arrive, disconnect lines, and nothing has to be removed / find place to store when you want to drive the toad
We also have Pressure Pro TPMS on DP and use TPMS sensors on JGC. (JGC has its OEM tire monitoring system, works well when we drive Jeep. But, we wanted Pressure Pro TPMS sensors on JGC external valve stems so we are also able to monitor toad tires while driving DP w Jeep as toad. Fyi- Press. Pro sensors do not interfere w the JGC's OEM internal tire monitoring system. )
As for the starting out in "tow" (reference dragging w parking brake on in your post Q), we always "double check" all toad connections/settings before pulling out. Basically, after all connected, DH goes to DP, DW stays by toad for visual check turn, brake lights working. But also, DW opens driver side door of toad to visually "check toad brake pedal IS depressing when MH brake pedal applied." Then, DW closes dr door, gives thumbs up signal to DH, who begins to slowly pull forward a few feet. During this part, DW's job is to observe first Dr side, then walk behind toad to pass side and observe ...checking that all 4 wheels are turning freely. DW gives hand signal to DH all good, DW takes last look on tow bar & air line all look good to go. Last step, DW gives a quick tug on all basement doors to double check all bays locked before driving away. Can tell you last step avoids interstate surprise opening bay doors while doing 60 mph... Don't ask me how we know. (Yes! We really do this every time, only takes 1-2 minutes and worth the peace of mind that two sets of eyes may avoid "dragging" the toad instead of towing in neutral.) YMMV
As an aside, recently in cg, saw new Cherokee in tow. Owners had added a decal/script above the Cherokee chrome on doors: "Baby Grand!".
We loved that touch, too!
We LOVE our JGC
Best wishes for your toad shopping. Enjoy the ride!
Safe Travels to All