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Unread 09-02-2013, 05:05 AM   #1
jtcnj
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2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: central NJ coastal area
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KJ and 3.7L in general a winner or loser?

Considering looking for a 2005 ish KJ with under or around 100k mi for a daily driver for my daughter. Not concerned about lift or mods limits vs solid axle XJ, etc.

Reading about a lot of window problems (not uncommon Chrysler elec. issues), premature ball joint, control arm, driveshaft failures and multiple 3.7L problems.

All vehicles have typical weak points and Jeep is no exception, but is the Liberty and the 3.7L a solid reliable vehicle (if maintained, of course) or a dud?

I realize objectivity may be questionable on a Jeep enthusiast site.

If you look at my sig you'll see I have some familiar horses in the stable and experienced a lot of the typical trouble spots on those models; I'm drinking the Kool-Aid too but trying to see through it.

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Unread 09-02-2013, 06:08 AM   #2
tommudd
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2004 KJ Liberty 
 
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Very reliable!
Like any vehicle take care of it and it'll last
Mine has over 190,000 on it, bought it new so have done all of the maintenance plus some, , buddies 03 has over 220,000 oh and neither have had window problems , thats mainly later 05s-06 etc
front driveshaft boot yes they need replaced but thats a regular wear item, NOT a problem area

Have to remember most of the *****ing and moaning you read on the forums is from folks who don't maintain their vehicles and then ***** when they break down.
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Unread 09-02-2013, 12:14 PM   #3
Luke09
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2005 KJ Liberty 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Barrie, Canada
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100,000+ miles ... the water pump is the only non wear item I have had to replace. Very reliable IMO


oh... almost forgot the drvr rear brake caliper seized ... so 2 repairs
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Unread 09-02-2013, 02:07 PM   #4
TwoBobsKJ
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2003 KJ Liberty 
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Northern, OH
Posts: 574
I agree with the the previous responses. And since you have a WJ with the 4.7L you are already familiar with the 3.7 - it's the same engine with 2 cylinders lopped off. The same block, accessories, injectors, plugs, etc. If you can get a maintenance record on the KJ you're looking at that would help.

If you purchase it stay up on the routine maintenance (I know, common sense. But we know it's not so common anymore...) and the KJ should take care of you for a long time. And if anything does go wrong they're easy to work on.

Let us know what you end up doing.

Bob
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Unread 09-02-2013, 03:11 PM   #5
DaveJKJ
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2005 KJ Liberty 
 
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The 3.7L is reliable overall I think. Not just used in the KJ and KK. There's a lot of them out there. They were also used in the Dodge Dakota, and the base engine in the Grand Cheroke and Commander. Plus, people will come on a forum and complain about an engine problem a lot faster than they will just go on a forum and say it is good and they have no problems. Maintenance is the key I think (oil changes, using the proper fluids etc.) as with any vehicle.

Also, most of the window regulator problems were in 06-07 model years from what I've read.
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Unread 09-03-2013, 08:44 AM   #6
TomSawyer
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2002 KJ Liberty 
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: seattle, washington
Posts: 46
All I can say is I just bought a used KJ 3.7 with 121K miles and the carfax was about as clean and consistant as one could ever hope for.

The ride sold me. I've driven minivans, suvs, cuvs and trucks but this was different. The handling, the turning radius. And I haven't even gotten into the mountain snow that I bought it for (snowmobiling, towing a pair) which I have no concerns about whatsoever!

Plus heated seats and rearview mirrors! bonus points!!
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Unread 09-04-2013, 05:34 PM   #7
olliehopnoodle
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We had problems with ours but it was due to missed maintainence. Check the oil often, watch the temp gauge.
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Unread 09-05-2013, 05:55 AM   #8
AVR2
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1993 ZJ 
 
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I'll throw in an alternate view. We've had our 2005 KJ from new and it's always been serviced on time, but reliability is only average. Problems started within weeks of taking delivery, with juddering on braking due to warped rotors - the dealership had to replace them twice before the problem was solved.

We've had the regulator problem on both rear windows (one was replaced under warranty and then broke again six months later), a shot driveshaft, the rust issue around the high-level brake lamp, a new PS high pressure hose and steering rack, a trans rebuild, and we're on our third radiator - only our second water pump, though.

Also, be aware that some (not all) KJ engines are at risk of dropping a valve seat on cylinder 2, a problem acknowledged by Chrysler and covered under warranty - but all the potentially-affected KJs are well out of warranty by now.
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Unread 09-05-2013, 09:06 AM   #9
tjkj2002
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2002 KJ Liberty 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVR2 View Post
I'll throw in an alternate view. We've had our 2005 KJ from new and it's always been serviced on time, but reliability is only average. Problems started within weeks of taking delivery, with juddering on braking due to warped rotors - the dealership had to replace them twice before the problem was solved.

We've had the regulator problem on both rear windows (one was replaced under warranty and then broke again six months later), a shot driveshaft, the rust issue around the high-level brake lamp, a new PS high pressure hose and steering rack, a trans rebuild, and we're on our third radiator - only our second water pump, though.

Also, be aware that some (not all) KJ engines are at risk of dropping a valve seat on cylinder 2, a problem acknowledged by Chrysler and covered under warranty - but all the potentially-affected KJs are well out of warranty by now.
Like any vehicle you get good ones and bad ones.Just happens the KJ's with the 3.7 are generally more good then bad.My '02 has been the most reliable vehicle I've ever owned and I've had about 50 or so over the years.
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