Hello fellow SFU brothers and sisters. Here is my write up as promised many months ago.
I will preface this write up that this is after 600 plus miles in some nasty rainy, foggy, misty and windy weather. The entire trip was this way. 3 hours in daylight and 6 1/2 at night so I have a lot of experience with the wipers and HVAC systems.
I picked up the SFU at 3:10 pm CST and headed out.
The first thing I noticed (I only test drove one months ago for 12 miles or so) is now nice the brake modulation was. Very nice and linear. Steering doesn't seem heavily weighted to me but I do drive BMWs which have slightly heavy steering so the weighting seemed just fine. Seats are firm and comfortable to me. As reported the lumber adjustment allows for vertical travel so you can pick your sweet spot and or adjust it from time to time.
I am a little over 6' tall and weigh 212. The drivers seat is very adjustable to me and the best feature is the steering wheel which articulates far enough back to be very comfortable allowing me to rest my elbows on both arm rests. There are blind spots and Brainstormer was good enough to demo that to me. I am impressed at how well it works and how it isn't intrusive to me anyway. Lighting driving in 6 hours of rain was adequate. Many have reported that they were disappointed. Not me I can see the lights are not correctly adjusted and once I tweak them up a bit using Daniel Sterns method
Daniel Stern Lighting Consultancy and Supply
they will perform as required. I have yet to own any car or truck with correctly adjusted headlights. My BMW is the same way. No one flashes me because they are not blinding anyone. You might want to do his procedure vs placing blame at Jeep for a poor product or the dealer for a poor adjustment. They adjusted them to spec, problem is spec isn't right for driving.
Interior lighting is adequate. I turn my lights down to match ambient. My years flying all types of aircraft both combat and civilian you learn how to do this. I like the lighted cup-holders as you can see them but they are light blue and don't cause issues.
Mirrors are large and cause some blind spots which you can get used to. A pillars the same thing. The Jeep isn't the best vehicle for visibility regarding blind spots but the blind spot monitors are excellent and I am comfortable with this now. I knew when I test drove it so this was no surprise.
Many have complained about the turbo lag and or the slower response of the DME to get this thing going. It is true but you adjust to it and I have to get the best mpg I can get.
Overall the throttle response is adequate in ECO mode but good with it not engaged.
My average mpg during this drive which was 63 mph was 27.3 calculated and also what EVIC said. I am impressed that they are so close. What isn't apparent is that I hammered down on this thing running close to 80 a lot but with rain so heavy it was dangerous to run more than 40 at times. I am very happy with the mpg as I do think sustained it will run at spec of 28 mpg.
All fluids were correct and tire pressures were 38.5 front 36.5 rear. I adjusted them all to 36.5 psi. Also no shimmy as reported by many with the Goodyears. However I need to bring it to the dealer for an alignment as it pulls slightly to the right even in the left lane with the crown of the road rolling off left.
This doesn't help fuel mileage but might account for less than a 1/10th of a mile to the gallon.
HVAC system worked very well no over shooting or undershooting and was easy to use.
A general point about the 8.4" display set up. It is intuitive and easy to use which is much better than my Outback which is a 13 model by the way. This is the easiest system to use I have operated in vehicles so far. I am not a fanboi of any make or model but kudos are deserved here and frankly for the entire Jeep.
Jumping to the rear hatch and spare tire area. The tool caddy doesn't fit into the space provided with a full size spare tire. Come on Jeep spend a couple bucks for those of us that have a full size spare and get us a caddy that fits. Mine is sitting half in and half out the spare tire. Lot of room around the spare tire for my rear hitch D ring and snatch strap which I carry just in case.
Fit and finish. I looked her over today and have no negative comments on the platform. The fit and finish is spot on given this is a high volume production car. I rate this as good as my BMW E93.
This was OK. Lets face it folks Mark is cutting us a really great deal and my expectations were met knowing they would not fill the diesel tank up since they don't have a tank on site and we all know to send the receipt back to Mark. I will need to redo a couple things like get all the plastic off some of the areas where the seats mount to the floor and a couple little scuffs and smudges. Nothing bad at all. I rate it adequate given the price and easy of transaction.
Noise level of the engine and transmission. It is audible when idling and cold but other than that you cannot tell this is a diesel once moving. The transmission is excellent nuf said.
Wind noise level is very low and impressive.
Audio system is good. I used only FM and SiriusXM and found the sound quality to be really good. I am sure other stored music will be great but my hearing isn't that great from flying airplanes so I defer to others with better stereophonic expertise. Suits me just fine happy. Only thing I don't know yet is if the sound level can be adjusted using only the volume knob. If there is I have not found it yet but going to study the DVD tonight and other evening to discover many things I don't know yet about the user interface.
You have to live with a vehicle for a while to understand it. The more I drove it the more I liked it and understood why some things are what they are.
I am certainly missing many things but wanted some assessment now covered by many before me. Attached are three pics I took today after washing the hours of rain and grime off the SFU.
Bottom line would I do this again. Yes I would and I am very happy with this vehicle. The looks which was not a super critical feature for me are excellent and the interior of a high quality feel.