Laredo’s got guts
Unless you’re towing horses and boats, the Laredo sports more than enough power to haul you to work: Its 3.6L 6-cylinder VVT engine emits 290 ponies and 260lb. of torque. Sure, the Overland — DailyXY review here — has a 5.7L V8 engine but it’s not the size of the top hat that matters so much as the skill of the magician. Consider my Mini Clubman, which produces one-third of the Overland’s 360hp and is still a thrilling drive.
Better at the pump
The Laredo outperforms the Overland on fuel economy; still, unless you’re using either vehicle for heavy work, you might want to take taxis in the city. These are definitely weekender rides: Laredo’s city-highway economy gap exceeds 4¢ per litre (13 L/100 km versus 8.9), and the Overland’s is an even 5¢ (15.6 L/100 km versus 10.6).
A blast out of town
Like the Overland, the Laredo provides terrific handling on slick, snowy country roads. Both vehicles also feature the same Selec-Terrain system for off-road enthusiasts. Despite the comforts, you never forget you’re driving a Jeep. On an open road, it puts a smile on your face.
Many of the same features
· ‘Keyless Enter-N-Go’ requires no description: Simply put, it’s supremely convenient when you’re weighted down with a briefcase, ski equipment and winter clothes.
· Free satellite radio for a year — probably just long enough to become addicted.
· Trailer Sway Damping control is useful if you’re towing and, for whatever reason, the trailer starts to sway (always a disconcerting feeling). Basically, this feature applies pressure to individual brakes to stabilize. Brilliant.
It’s been a long, cold, ugly winter and chances are that Overland drivers are gloating over Remote Start, which is not standard-issue with the Laredo (or, sadly, the Clubman). As that’s not really a dealbreaker — miserable Canadian winters rarely last longer than six months — you should consider the lower-priced Laredo. Why, you ask, when according to demographic research of DailyXY readers, you’re affluent? The same research also says you’re smart.
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4×4
Base Price: $48,795
As Driven: $53,195
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4×4
Base Price: $37,995
As Driven: $47,620
Image courtesy of Chrysler-Group.