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Old 10-17-2020, 06:35 PM   #1
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Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk 4x4 Dinghy

Does anyone have experience with the Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk 4x4 (2017-2019) as a dinghy tow vehicle? If so, pros and cons? Your thoughts and experience? According to the owners manual, it can be flat towed.
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Old 10-17-2020, 07:38 PM   #2
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We bought a 2020 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk Elite with the V6. It is our first toad, I chose it because of the easy setup for towing 4 down and no 65mph tow speed limit to worry about. We have now towed it a little over 3000 miles, behind our class C. So we have now towed it farther than we have actually driven it. I haven't had any problems or a noticeable loss in mpg. I do use the tow haul button when pulling it. I had a NAS Ready brake installed along with a roadmaster all-terrain tow bar and roadmaster base plate. They also installed the diode wire harness for the brake lights. The wife really enjoys driving the jeep and hardly drives her car now.
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Old 10-17-2020, 08:04 PM   #3
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We have a 2017 Trailhawk. 20,000 miles towed behind a 2018 Thor Palazzo. No problems. I did get the dealer installed power steering harness installed. Suspossed to eliminate any steering wobble. This is not required with 2019 and 2020 models. We use Blue Ox.
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Old 10-17-2020, 08:16 PM   #4
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2019 Jeep Trailhawk

We have been towing a 2019 Jeep Trailhawk behind our 2017 Miramar gas motorhome for over 1 year now. No cons, all has been good. Towing with the Roadmaster nighthawk tow bar. Connection / disconnect is easy / simple. Probably have 4,000 tow miles and 17,000 drive miles on the toad. The 2019 Trailhawk does not have the death wobble issue, to my knowledge.
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Old 10-17-2020, 08:23 PM   #5
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Dragged our 2019 all over the country with zero issues. We got the trailhawk elite and itís been a great car. Iím not even a Jeep guy but they do tow great. We went with the Cherokee over the Wrangler because we put a lot of miles on day trips and wanted a bit more comfort for long trips.
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Old 10-17-2020, 08:31 PM   #6
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Just bought a new 2020 Trail Hawk and we have been towing it4 down with no problems for the last 4 months.
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Old 10-18-2020, 05:45 AM   #7
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Just a few notes here the 2014-2017 Cherokee needs a flat tow wiring harness to be installed to prevent death wobble, dealers charge about $500 for installing this kit as it does take a couple of hours worth of labor to install (center console must be disassembled). I think the 2018 redesign did away with needing the special wiring harness which allows the electronic power steering to be powered when in toad mode. (we have a 2017 Cherokee).


Now a bit about flat towable Cherokees, to flat tow a modern generation Cherokee it needs to have the Active Drive II transmission option. All Cherokee Trailhawks have Active Drive II, however it is optional on other trim levels (Active Drive I is not flat towable),We have a 2017 Cherokee Overland edition with Active Drive II which we intend to set up for TOAD duty (I have bought all the parts, just not installed them yet), while shopping for ours I even ran across a 2015 Cherokee Latitude with Active Drive II so they are out there even in the more base trims, just very rare.
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Old 10-18-2020, 06:14 AM   #8
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Issac is correct on the tow harness. We have a 2017 Cherokee trailhawk we set up for flat towing last year replacing a Chevy Equinox.

We had the flat tow harness installed at the dealer. If I remember correctly is was around $150 for the part and around $250 to install. They did it in a couple hours. I let them do it as the console must be disassembled and the fuse and battery area also removed.

I put the Blue Ox Tow plate on and also did the wiring with a roadmaster diode kit. That worked fairly well. E trailer has all the parts and a video showing step by step the install. You must cut one section but nothing too crazy.

To set up to tow there is one fuse that you install and activate the tow harness with a switch in the console. The active drive 2 is placed in neutral. Takes about 5 minutes or less for total hook up with the blue ox Aladdin tow bar.

We pulled it about 3k miles this summer with no issues. We do try and stay below 65 mph and usually pull less than 350 miles per day.

The Cherokee is a great around town vehicle with the added benefit of serous off road capability if you like to explore remote areas. We would rate it superior to our previous Equinox.
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Old 10-18-2020, 08:18 AM   #9
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We just changed our toad to a 2020 Cherokee Trailhawk and absolutely love it. It flat tows very easily. As noted, the 2018s and earlier require a special wiring harness to keep the "death wobble" from occurring and you have to have the Active Drive II transmission (standard in Trailhawks). You also have to use a ball point pen and follow a detailed procedure to disable the transmission for towing. But overall, it is great toad and a fun vehicle to drive, especially here in the mountains (when there aren't any fires)!
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Old 10-18-2020, 08:30 PM   #10
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We have a 2017 Cherokee Trailhawk. Love the beast. We had to have the the flat two wiring change installed (by the dealer, at their cost, since we asked specifically if it was needed for flat towing and they said, "No" which was later proved wrong - so they paid).

Full time with the jeep since 2017 until now - about 20,000 miles no issues.

We have it set up so that when power is applied (via diode) from the motorhome (ignition On power from MH) a 12 VDC relay powers the power steering under the hood - this eliminating the need to insert/pull the silly fuse that the tow-mod wiring requires to keep the power steering active to prevent death wobble when towing. Meanwhile, we simply use the procedure when connecting and disconnection the jeep.

We also make sure the rear wheels turn freely before we drive more than 10 feet! That's just in case we missed one of the flat tow steps and the wheels might still be locked or brakes on.

Easy to connect and disconnect - reliable and pretty rugged. We carry our kayaks and three bikes on the jeep. Kayaks on top and bikes on a hitch mount carrier.
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Old 10-22-2020, 06:16 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Domo View Post
We have a 2017 Cherokee Trailhawk....

We also make sure the rear wheels turn freely before we drive more than 10 feet! That's just in case we missed one of the flat tow steps and the wheels might still be locked or brakes on.
Have you ever had an instance where it wasn't set up correctly? Making the first trip with our "new" 2017 Cherokee Overland next week. I'm a little anxious coming from towing a TJ Wrangler which was dead simple to tow - txfr case in "N", shifter in 2nd and park brake off. No electric voodoo and flashing lights! I could tell at a glance if it was set up correctly.

I'm sure it will work fine, but still....
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Old 10-24-2020, 05:53 AM   #12
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After hooking up our 2019 Cherokee Lattitude plus, I always have DW pull the mh forward a few feet while I make sure all four wheels are turning and the tow bar arms are locked. We have never had a time when either were an issue.... until last trip. Yep when setting the car up for towing I inadvertently had the drivers door open and sure enough the parking brake set itself and the rear wheels were locked.

ALWAYS, ALWAYS check before towing along with your light check. We have also caught the light cord not being plugged in correctly a few times. Check, check, check!
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Old 10-24-2020, 06:27 AM   #13
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Yes, that automatically applied parking brake is a real pain sometimes, and there is no way to fully defeat it. (ie it always applies if you put in gear with the door open)
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Old 10-24-2020, 06:48 AM   #14
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No issues towing Our 19 Trailhawk. I installed the BlueOx baseplate, Roadmaster Invisibrake , and a diode wiring setup for the lights. I also installed a charge line, brake light relay (necessary so that brake lights do not override the turn signals), and brake pedal activation indicator in the MH.

You can turn off the auto parking brake in the cars setup menu, I highly recommend doing this to prevent inadvertent activation of the parking brake. Simple process to put into neutral to tow. The manual procedure has many extra steps which can be avoided on e you fully understand the process. Highly recommend as a toad.

We also do a light check and roll check including bar lock up when starting out. Well worth the minute of time for the peace of mind.
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