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Old 03-03-2011, 02:35 PM
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Underwhelmed by HEMI

At the risk of getting kicked off the forum, I thought I would share my impressions after test driving of a HEMI Ltd yesterday. I am really tempted to get a new GC, but still on the fence as to whether I should wait for the diesel I really want (and may never come) or just get one now.

The dealer had dozens of GC's on the lot, I was surpirsed to see that many. They were mostly Laredos with V6, but they had a bunch a Ltd's with HEMI, and a handful of Overlands also with HEMI (it was probably a 50 / 35/ 15 mix). Allow me to reiterate that I really really would like Chrysler to sell a Ltd with turbo diesel in the US, but I would probably buy a WK2 today if my WJ quit on me unexpectedly. My first choice would probably be a Ltd V6, but since there were none, off we went in a HEMI.

I was driving like a civilized person which seems like the thing to do with a Jeep on the streets with traffic. As we were discussing the difference in power between both engines, it was suggested that I punch it as we were rolling at around 40MPH. That's when the wait started. It felt like forever before I got a downshift and even after that occured, I did not get the kick in the lower back I was told would be coming. Same happened from a stop. Maybe the engine / trans were too fresh, but I was very disapointed at the lack of urgency.

On the positive side, Chrysler has done a fantatic job with the interior. It seems really well thought out and well screwed together. I love the pano roof and the detail of the cargo area. The WJ looks really dated compared to the WK2. I felt the steering was a bit squirely, but overall the improvement in handling and ride comfort was amazing with the tester's 18 inchers.

I still have not driven a V6, but I suspect that under most conditions it would be sufficient. Maybe I should have insisted on driving one. If it drives close to the HEMI under normal conditions, I would have been totally wowed.

It's a beautiful vehicle and I am sure all you lucky people who already have one are loving it, regardless of which engine you chose. I am really tempted to upgrade, but after sleeping on it, I will hang on to my WJ at least until the 2012's come out and then I'm driving both the V6 and V8 back to back. Maybe if I wait until 2013 model year the tubo diesel will even be available in the US and then I'll have what I really want. One can always hope.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:44 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

Electronic Throttle Control = mediocre throttle response at best, lag at worst.

Check out this ETC thread from the WK guys: Electronic Throttle Control (ETC) .. let's discuss

Or similar issues with WK2 Pentastar: Pentastar Throttle delay
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:46 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

I had the same experience. I asked for the v6. Dealer kept talking up the v8. I finally agreed to test drive a v8, and it was like-- Seriously? You saw me drive up in a bmw 335i and you expected me to be impressed by this? Awful throttle response and transmission. That said, the v6 is just as bad, but at least I get better MPG saved $1500.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:56 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

There are multiple TSBs regarding this issue by the way...

http://wk2jeeps.com/wk2_tsb.htm
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:02 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrazyJ View Post
I had the same experience. I asked for the v6. Dealer kept talking up the v8. I finally agreed to test drive a v8, and it was like-- Seriously? You saw me drive up in a bmw 335i and you expected me to be impressed by this? Awful throttle response and transmission. That said, the v6 is just as bad, but at least I get better MPG saved $1500.
Actually, you can debate the power difference, but to call the V6 "Just as bad" performance wise is a huge stretch, you can really feel the torque difference between the two engines. Different strokes for different folks, but two things are really beyond debate; 1) The V6 will get better mileage, 2) The Hemi is more powerful. Everyone will have their own preference, and their really is no right are wrong but each engine has it's own strengths and weaknesses. So because you are coming from a really fast BMW 335i you had to chose the V6 GC ? While neither engine will come close to matching your 335i performance wise, the V8 will be much closer.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:10 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

Punching the throttle in a 5000lb vehicles is a pretty lame test of performance. Drive both vehicles (V8 and V6) at speed and apply throttle like you would in a normal driving situation and see which feels better to you. The Hemi has the torque that give you better throttle response without needing to kick down a gear. If you really want to see / feel the difference use the shifter to lock out 4th and 5th gears and see how it response at 40 mph in 3rd gear.

Of course it's not going to impress like a performance car, it's simply too heavy and the computers are configured to provide a smoother power delivery vs. a high performance vehicle.

I've owned a couple high performance SUV's and I find the Hemi Overland to be a pleasure to drive and quite adequate. If you want a performance SUV wait on the SRT8 or shop another (much more expensive) brand.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:11 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

i would say get used to it....any DBW vehicle will have the lag.....
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:23 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

These vehicles don't have 3.73 gears in them like the WJ has that you drive. The V6 has a 3.06 and the V8 is either a 3.45 or 3.47 as Jeep is trying to get better mileage out of them especially as they weigh much more than your WJ. I think when it comes to the different gear ratios it makes all the difference. I believe your 4.7 is making about 235HP and with 3.73s it’s probably going to be quicker off the line than the 5.7 with 360HP with a 3.45s. I had a 2008 JGC Limited with 3.73s and the 3.0L diesel and the 215HP that it made felt like 450HP because of the torque which I believe was 376ftlbs (at the time more than the Hemi) that thing was impressive although I had a chip and it was making over 400ftlbs of torque. If the WK2's had a diesel right now that’s what I would have bought instead of the Hemi. I fully understand where you are coming from.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:32 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

Quote:
Originally Posted by FredoinSF View Post
At the risk of getting kicked off the forum, I thought I would share my impressions after test driving of a HEMI Ltd yesterday. I am really tempted to get a new GC, but still on the fence as to whether I should wait for the diesel I really want (and may never come) or just get one now.

The dealer had dozens of GC's on the lot, I was surpirsed to see that many. They were mostly Laredos with V6, but they had a bunch a Ltd's with HEMI, and a handful of Overlands also with HEMI (it was probably a 50 / 35/ 15 mix). Allow me to reiterate that I really really would like Chrysler to sell a Ltd with turbo diesel in the US, but I would probably buy a WK2 today if my WJ quit on me unexpectedly. My first choice would probably be a Ltd V6, but since there were none, off we went in a HEMI.

I was driving like a civilized person which seems like the thing to do with a Jeep on the streets with traffic. As we were discussing the difference in power between both engines, it was suggested that I punch it as we were rolling at around 40MPH. That's when the wait started. It felt like forever before I got a downshift and even after that occured, I did not get the kick in the lower back I was told would be coming. Same happened from a stop. Maybe the engine / trans were too fresh, but I was very disapointed at the lack of urgency.

On the positive side, Chrysler has done a fantatic job with the interior. It seems really well thought out and well screwed together. I love the pano roof and the detail of the cargo area. The WJ looks really dated compared to the WK2. I felt the steering was a bit squirely, but overall the improvement in handling and ride comfort was amazing with the tester's 18 inchers.

I still have not driven a V6, but I suspect that under most conditions it would be sufficient. Maybe I should have insisted on driving one. If it drives close to the HEMI under normal conditions, I would have been totally wowed.

It's a beautiful vehicle and I am sure all you lucky people who already have one are loving it, regardless of which engine you chose. I am really tempted to upgrade, but after sleeping on it, I will hang on to my WJ at least until the 2012's come out and then I'm driving both the V6 and V8 back to back. Maybe if I wait until 2013 model year the tubo diesel will even be available in the US and then I'll have what I really want. One can always hope.
I wasn't blown away by the power but when my Wife and I drove one we were impressed, and I came out of an SRT8 Jeep and she drives an M3.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:35 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

wow....!!! I agree with whomever said, wait for the 2012 SRT8. On the other hand, install the available high performance air instake, upgrade exhaust system.

Comparing Bimmer performance to a Jeep, not a fair comparison by any stretch. After all, the Jeep Hemi is an SUV, heavier. My 5th Jeep, 2nd Hemi. I am quite pleased with the 2011 Hemi performance. Just my opinion.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:38 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

I will say the ESC TSB that corrects all vehicles (V6 and V8) built prior to 30 DEC 2010 helps quite a bit. My Hemi is much more throttle responsive...I'm telling you it does make a big difference...especially in sport mode.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:43 PM
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Re: Underwhelmed by HEMI

There's several of us who felt that the Hemi was not a significant improvement over the Pentastar.

With 10K miles on my V-6 WK2, I still have no complaints about the engine power; I'm currently sitting at the dealer for an unrelated trim issue, but I'm having them apply the TSB for the overzealous upshifting and occasional lack of response, and that should make things even better.

It's important to remember that these aren't sports cars. The weight and size mean that only something astonishingly powerful will make it feel like that, and an engine like that will drink fuel like a Pepsi through a fire hose. If you want performance, SUVs are a bad place to look. But for what it is, IMO, the WK2 is quite good.
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