Originally Posted by FlyingDiver
If you've got the time to drive to Pender, NE, Blue OX will usually do a free install if yours is the first of that model they've had to work on. Takes a few days while they design the bracket. Worth calling them to see if they already have a Trailhawk lined up.
I thought we had that one with Blue OX in the bag as we ordered our Cherokee Limited on Aug 1. You also get a free tow bar and they will do the lights (if you want them - we use mag lights now) for a 25% discount. Our Cherokee is not in D1 meaning that it is scheduled for production with a shipping date of Nov 9 but we will be in FLA when it is delivered (my son will take delivery and turn in our Escape).
I've seen a couple in the flesh now and today turned down an offer to drive a FWD V6 because it was pouring. Our Limited will have virtually options except for the cd player and extra speakers.
Finally got clarification of a significant item in their brochure, which recently hit the dealers' shelves. The Latitude (North in Canada) has Active Drive II (that has the N in the transfer case) as an option as it is in the Limited. We did not want a Trail Hawk (DW's car) but I had trouble determining whether the TH with the Active Drive Lock feature could be flat towed. If I were buying a TH I'd have flat towing written right into the contract (I have not seen the manual yet and hopefully it is clarified there).
I think Jeep has a real winner here. Marchionne decided to hold all of the units built until they got the programming right for the 9 speed, rather than have owners have to go to their dealers later. The end result was over a half billion dollars of inventory stored all around Toledo. If you get on the Jeep Garage forum you can learn a lot about what has been going on since a lot of factory people and dealers participate. If no serious problems crop up it is going to be a sought after vehicle for towing. I would have considered a Grand Cherokee but this is DW's car and she refused to have anything that size - also with the model I'd want we'd probably go over the 5k weight limit.
Our build will not have to be reprogrammed and they expect it will we shipped promptly. If Blue Ox hasn't had a taker for its offer, we might consider going to Pender in January on the way back to Florida - but given the weather at that time of the year I expect we'll go straight back to FLA.
Our Escape was a very nice vehicle - except for the towing issue. Our transmission went but you travelled with your fingers crossed at all times. We had a SanGauge in it on several occasions and when towing in warm weather the fluid temperature reached 220 degrees. When driving, it was a chore to get to even 180 degrees. In a deal with Remco Ford took over the lube pump offering and the price sky-rocketed. Our dealer quoted us a discounted price of $4600 to supply and install a lube pump. We almost traded for an Edge - in fact we were within 2 minutes of signing on the dotted line when I decided that Ford did not deserve get our business this time around. Unfortunately vehicles with transfer cases are becoming increasingly scarce - especially if you want to keep a cushion under the 5000 lb weight limit. We had a couple of DPs and towed a Tahoe. It was great. No periodic starting and running and all the rest of that stuff you are supposed to do with a AWD unit without a N in the transfer case. I'll be glad to get back to a transfer case.
The other aspect that was important was the towing capacity. DW thinks that in the next year or two we should downsize again. The Cherokee outfitted with the towing package can tow 4500 lbs. When selecting a small trailer that is a big advantage over 3500 lbs.