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Unread 06-24-2008, 06:56 AM   #1
Curt941
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5.9 GC Limited vs. 4.0 Cherokee

So i'm looking to get a cheap daily driver that I could throw a lift on and have some fun with.

I've had an EVO, a G35 and an Audi A4 in the past year and a half, but all those cars i've had to worry about sitting in the parking lot will they get dinged up, worry about running over **** and ripping off a bumper, worry about curbing wheels, etc.

I want something that will be reliable and I can have some fun with.

Now on to my question.

There is a 1998 5.9L Grand Cherokee Limited for sale with 99K miles for $4995. I know I could talk them down seeing as the thing gets like 12 mpg from what i've read on here and right now that's a big negative (not to me, i don't drive very far to work so I don't mind.)

There is also a 1998 4.0 Cherokee Limited with 120K miles (can't remember the price.

But which one would be more fun?

From reading, i found a lift that looks like it would work well, the IRO 4.5" lift for the grand cherokee, and i'd do a similar lift on the cherokee with some 31 or 32" tires.


I'm kind of leaning towards the grand cherokee since it's a little more luxury and I will be driving it to work more then I will in the dirt.

So what are your opinions?

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Unread 06-24-2008, 07:37 AM   #2
BRad704
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I can't give you personal experience becuase my XJ is a 96 and so is my mom's GC... BUT, i would turn to look at a lifted, locked, big-mo-fo Grand Cherokee first... only becuase you dont see very many done well around Memphis...

As far as "fun"... its gonna be as fun as you make it, no matter which you are driving.
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Unread 06-24-2008, 08:14 AM   #3
xj984.0
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my friend has a 98 5.9 and i have a 98 xj and we both have 120k miles. he lifted his and he had death wobble that he just couldn't fix. his gc also has the 249 transfer case which you are going to hate. his car is constantly having problems because those luxury grand cherokees have a ton more electrical problems then cherokees. as far as reliability i would definatly go with the cherokee. if you dont mind gas prices and quite a few expensive repair bills go with the grand
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Unread 06-24-2008, 08:32 AM   #4
hitech_hick
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Call me a bit bias, but I would have to side with the XJ. Cheaper, more reliable, better bas mileage. As for luxuries, what exactly are you looking for? XJ's can be had with all the power options, the Infinity sound system, leather, over head console, and full time 4wd (while still being able to put it in 2wd and part time 4wd). My '97 with 3 inch lift, 31's and 4.10's averaged 17.6 to 17.8 mpg. My '98 limited which is stock can get 22 mpg without doing anything special. Yeah, the bigger motor would be fun, by the 4.0 XJ's aren't pooches by any means, they can definitely hold there own.


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Unread 06-24-2008, 08:54 AM   #5
ehall
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The 98 Limited 5.9 is a fantastic vehicle--overkill luxury items and the most powerful engine Jeep released until the Hemi came along.

You'll want to swap the 249 for a 242 though.
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Unread 06-24-2008, 08:59 AM   #6
winkosmosis
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Cherokee is more fun. Until the week before last I drove a 1999 WJ and it felt like too big a vehicle. Yeah objectively it's better in most ways, and does fine off road, but it's 1/3 heavier. I don't know how many horses a 5.9 has, but the WJ 4.7L has 235. The XJ feels faster and probably is, but more importantly it feels more like a Jeep version of a sports car. It reminds me most of the 240sx I had. Test drive that ZJ and an XJ and you will see what I mean.

Also, the XJ looks much better with the same size tires as a ZJ or WJ because it's a sleeker vehicle. The distance from the bottom of the rocker panel to the roof on the XJ is like 13" less than the WJ
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Unread 06-24-2008, 09:02 AM   #7
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How do you switch cars every 6 months? I hope you're buying used, otherwise that's a lot of depreciation
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Unread 06-24-2008, 11:39 AM   #8
havasu1
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Get the Cherokee as other mentioned. It's lighter, easy to work on, and many mods out there. Plus, the XJ really didn't change much over its production life span so parts a plentiful and interchangeable. XJ probably has more after market support as well
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Unread 06-24-2008, 12:25 PM   #9
Curt941
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winkosmosis View Post
How do you switch cars every 6 months? I hope you're buying used, otherwise that's a lot of depreciation
Yeah, I allways buy used.

I just bought a condo and I decided that it was smartert to invest in my future then dump $500 a month into a depreciating asset to get from point A to point B.


Oh, and another question.

I read that I should look for the chrysler 8.25 rear axle in a cherokee, but most around here have ABS which I was told meant they have a Dana 35 rear axle. For modest lift (<5") and <33" tires, will that be ok? Also, I was told to get a 98 or older since it's got a high pinion dana 30 in the front and it puts less strain on the front drive shaft when lifted, is that also correct?
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Unread 06-24-2008, 01:14 PM   #10
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buy both, swap drivetrains and sell the GC.
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Unread 06-24-2008, 01:39 PM   #11
Curt941
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aircruiser View Post
buy both, swap drivetrains and sell the GC.
haha, great suggestion, that'd be one quick *** cherokee.

The thing that sucks is I found a great 1998 cherokee limited with leather that has 133k miles, but they're asking $5995, a full $1000 more then the 5.9L limited Grand Cherokee...
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Unread 06-24-2008, 04:02 PM   #12
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go with the xj man .. buddy of mine had the gc with the 5.9 in it, fast as hell but u will have never ending problems with it. look for a 99 xj if u can, they came with the 8.25 rear nd the hp dana 30 up front. only thing is that if u plan on lifting higher than 4inches give or take ur gonna need to go with a slip yolk rather than just a transfer case drop kit . plus the 4.0 will last u well over 250k their built like tanks
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Unread 06-24-2008, 04:45 PM   #13
winkosmosis
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I think it's worth it to try to get an 8.25. The less you have to swap or fix, the better.

Don't overpay. The one I bought was listed at $4500 and no one bought it for that. It was the guy's second to last day in the country so he let me have it for even less but I think the $4500 was reasonable. 108k miles, well maintained. Most people in TX have no idea how awesome an XJ is and probably pass on them because they don't ride like Cadillacs. Or full size pickups for that matter (this IS TX)
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Unread 06-24-2008, 05:32 PM   #14
Curt941
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So 1999's have 8.25 rear ends and HP Dana 30's up front?

I guess I got some misinformation since i thought the LP dana 30 started in 1999.

Thanks guys.
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Unread 06-24-2008, 06:30 PM   #15
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nope 99 is the last year that they made the xjs with the hp dana 30 up front
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