2006 Jeep Liberty Limited 4X4 CRD (599)

Overview:

This week we’re looking at the 2006 Jeep Liberty Limited 4X4 CRD where CRD is the acronym for Common Rail Diesel. Ok, you ask “what the hell is that?” True story, that’s how people talk these days. For a complete explanation you can go to: http://www.swedespeed.com/news/publish/Features/printer_272.html.

The short version is that it’s a design for fuel injection systems that employs a high-pressure pump to generate up to 1,600 bar (goes to an accumulator – the rail) independently of engine speed and the quantity of fuel injected. At the core it is simply a fine tuned ejection system that improves performance of the engine, makes it more efficient, quieter and more powerful.

It’s one of those baby steps in technology that is technically cool but really… what we need is a new propulsion system (like Fuel Cell technology NOW that is being slowly developed) or other imaginative method of transporting people and things to other places. Hey, we’re in the 21st Century, we’ve walked on the moon, how difficult could it be.

Public Service: The Diamond Lane Experience – Next week with the Dodge Magnum review.

General Info:

Parts – US/Canadian 74% (engine – Italy transmission – US)

Assembly – Toledo , Ohio , USA

Class: – Special Purpose

Cars: – Commander, Grand Cherokee, Liberty and Wrangler.

Handling & Performance:

Good for the most part, but its design is a narrow footprint with a short wheelbase and that coupled with a tall profile makes it scary on the curves, especially when you push the envelope of speed. All in all though I’ve always liked this smaller version of the SUV and the CRD noted above is a small step for mankind in reducing gas cost. A very small step by the way. I’d go out and buy a bicycle, but then I’d be too healthy, live too long and have that much more time to bitch and complain about how screwed up we tend to be.

I was surprised that this Liberty is noisier than the big Dodge Ram 3500 diesel I recently tested. I think Jeep needs to look at the insulation or something.

Styling:

Jeep styling is unique, or it was until Hummer stole the look and went on to advertise – “Like nothing else”. Hullo! Jeep could be the father. Surely they must know that. Do ya think? They should have told the ad agency.

Fit and Finish:

Good.

Cost:

Good with standard equipment.

Conveniences:

I’m partial to Navigation systems (an option for the Liberty ) but the screen is too small, and for the added cost I expect a full screen. Voice directions were good however. This generation of Nav is extra good when it comes to adding a location/ destination. You simply tell it to add your present location which eliminates the need to enter all that information. Great improvement.

Manual air conditioning is ok, but “Climate Control” eliminates those menopausal-like hot flashes and chills waiting for the adjustments to be effective.

Automated or full time 4 WD is better but its use is so rare the manual or part time system is ok with me.

I’m driving down the freeway and a guy pulls along side and points to my tire that was apparently going flat. A sigh of relief that he wasn’t in the grip of road rage, had no gun drawn but rather trying to be a good citizen. Thanks and off the freeway I went to change the – by then – flat tire. Well one nice convenience in this Liberty is the warning signal if indeed a tire is losing pressure.

Although advanced air bag technology is much better at determining the size of the passenger you still can’t transport children under 12 in the front seat. Related caution is that you MUST wear seat belts in conjunction with air bags. The reason: without both the air bags can do more damage than help.

Consumer Recommendation:

As equipped the price is good and the important things are included. However if you must have an upgraded stereo, CD player, sun roof, Navigation system, heated mirrors and front seats and other frills you will have to pop for another (aprox.) $6,000. Only you can determine if it is worth it. Me, I like all those things but if you’re not keeping the car long they add little to resale.

This Jeep includes (EARS) Enhanced Accident Response System that turns on interior lighting, unlocks doors and shuts off fuel when airbags deploy. This coupled with ESP, ABS and Tire monitoring enhances the overall safety rating. This stuff is much more important than all the frills.

Recognized Competition:

Jeep Liberty CRD $21-26,000, Ford Escape $19-27,000, Pontiac Torrent $21-23,000, Mercury Mariner $21-27,000, Saturn Vue $17-23,000, Chevrolet Equinox $21-24,000, Subaru Forester $22-28,000, Mazda Tribute $20-25,000, Mitsubishi Outlander $18-26,000, Kia sportage $16-22,000, Hyundai Tucson $18-24,000, Suzuki Grand Vitara $19-25,000, Honda CR-V $20-25,000, Toyota RAV4 $20-26,000, Nissan Xterra $20-28,000.

Good News:

CRD engine efficiency and ESP, advanced air bags.

Bad News:

Nothing significant.

Standard Equipment:

2.8 liter 4 cylinder turbo diesel, 5-speed automatic trans, front multistage air bags, tire pressure monitor and warning signal, enhanced accident response system, LATCH-ready child seat anchor system, part time 4WD system, ESP Electronic Stability Program, ABS 4 wheel power assist disc brakes, all speed traction control, rear widow defroster, intermittent wipers with rear wiper washer, air conditioning, power windows with speed sensitive power locks, theft deterrent system with security alarm, rear split folding bench seat, stereo with CD player tilt steering column with leather wrapped wheel, cruise control, cargo area cover, rear power outlet.

Gas Stats:

22 City and 26 Highway MPG

Pricing:

MSRP $26,190.

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2014 – An Automotive Love Affair.

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