Altitude Make Sense for Me? -
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Unread 03-23-2015, 11:57 AM   #1
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Altitude Make Sense for Me?

Sorry I am asking this but I am just getting a little freaked out at committing to something for this amount of money and this kind of time commitment. I saw the Altitude edition for the first time a couple of weeks ago in the wild. It intrigued me. Then I found it online and fell in love about a week ago. Two trips to dealers and I have tentatively signed a deal but haven't finalized everything yet, that's tomorrow.

Initially I thought I wanted a white one, but then my fiance said it reminded her of a bunny rabbit. Needless to say I picked the Billet Silver. It is basic with just the power sunroof. I don't need an upgraded stereo or a backup camera I've had a camera in the past on my G37 and although it was nice, I didn't miss it on my X3.

That said I am kind of freaking out. I think I like the look of this car but then I am not sure if I like it just because it is different. I don't know if Ill like it next year, or in 5 years when I finish paying off the loan. Its quite a bold statement and I am not a very bold person, but everything else in this segment bores me or I can't afford it. I also love the LEDs and know this doesn't come with it but I can't boost my price by 5 grand to get a Limited with the Lux II and plus I don't like the styling of the Limited as much. God I wish the altitude had the xenons.

We have an 11 month old daughter but do not plan on having any more children. I am going to add a tow hitch to it myself and if need be the Thule roof rack that does not require rails, if our travel space needs continue to grow.

I need this thing to do well at the beach. We will be getting a pass to go to Duxbury Beach in Mass. and the sand can be pretty deep. My best friend has an 06 Commander and the thing handles it with no problem. Last summer however we had to use his commander to TOW out a 2013 Highlander. Can the Altitude handle fairly substantial sand or is the QD I limited?

Otherwise I will be driving this thing daily to work on the highway, no traffic, for about 50 miles a day combined. Am looking forward to the savings with a boost in fuel economy and not having to use Premium over my 2007 BMW X3.

Deal btw the way is $39,285 down to $35,500 and they gave me excellent condition trade in value for the X3 ($12,400.)

I am also a bit off because two of my best friends just bought a Chevy Traverse and a Chevy Equinox and now I feel like I am BRUTALLY upstaging them. We all had kids within 3 months of eachother. They have gone the practical route and I am about to get something that looks like it should be in the next Too Fast Too Furious movie so this is another factor.

Also, in 7th grade a girl dumped me because I wore black socks with shorts. This might contribute to my anxiety.

And is the general consensus that they have cleared up the major issues plaguing the 2014? I had a '99 JGC Limited that literally almost killed me. Locked brake pad almost led to an exploding tire on the highway but the Lord intervened. I know first year models are rough, so I am hoping at least the 15s are clean.

Sorry for the rambling post but I feel like I am about to get married to a smoking hot girl who just so happens to offend my family and friends and might have a mental illness. (But you're still willing to do it because she looks so good, other than the herpes (no Xenons).)

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Unread 03-23-2015, 12:13 PM   #2
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I have not tried it myself, but from what I understand, you don't want to be in deep sand with QuadraTrac I (which is what I have on my '12 Altitude and I believe the only choice in current Altitude packages) and will want QDII for that with the locking diff. Others will chime in I'm sure.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 12:29 PM   #3
Kev M
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Puzzling post.

If you've had a GC, X3, G37 why is this purchase any different? And yeah, maybe you're taking a 5 year loan but you can always sell it or trade it if you're unhappy.

I wouldn't be happy without a backup camera anymore. It's very helpful, especially with a relatively large vehicle with a large hatch area but not so large a hatch window. I use the back-up cameras in our current vehicles every time I back out of the garage (to not hit the trees, but get close enough to easily turn and head front out of the driveway) and every time I park in the garage (to check if I'm in far enough but still leave as much room as I can in front of the vehicles).

SAND - We've got a Limited with the QTII and FWIW I've never had to use 4Lo on the beach or in the dunes (crossing the dunes is especially deep sand). I have heard the BLD system working, which would in theory be the same on the QTI, but I have pretty much always at least selected SAND mode on the Select Trac, so I can't say if the BLD system or transfer case settings were any different because of that. But you most certainly don't need the QD system.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 12:46 PM   #4
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It's not rocket science. Buy the car with the best balance of what you like and what you want to pay. Don't over think it.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 01:02 PM   #5
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It might be best to stick with a Traverse or Equinox like your buddies. The Altitude might be too wild for you to tame.

It is definitely a very characteristic, eye catching, vehicle. There is no doubt in my mind that the style will look bold and modern even after many years of owning it. I purchased my 14' Altitude back in April last year. It didn't even have the option for reverse camera and after some months I really wanted it. I was feeling like I should have waited for the 15's just to take advantage of the backup camera option. Needless to say I got the factory backup cam and its installed working flawlessly. Love the large screen of the 8.4" display when in the backup cam comes on. The dynamic lines move as you turn the steering wheel and it definitely assists when lining up and/or maneuvering in/out of tight areas.

As for QDI, I have yet to have any sort of problem. This winter I had driven through 8-14" of snow without a wink of feeling stuck. Another important thing to remember is what meat you have on. I would highly suggest going for a better tire than the stock Fortera's.

Good luck with your decision. Be Bold. Let your family know that you have no problems making an impression. Enjoy it and all the compliments you'll receive once you have it. Oh yea, once you have it let the modifications begin!
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Unread 03-23-2015, 02:18 PM   #6
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The Altitude edition is a very nice "basic" JGC (Laredo) with a few added creature comforts and a distinctive look at an attractive price. It's not for everyone, for sure. It can do very mild off-road, but doesn't have SelectTerain or 4LO for fancier stuff. But QT1 isn't an incapable system...a lot of things are more up to the driver.

BTW, I wouldn't eschew the backup camera for anything, especially with a small child in the picture. That's one reason they are very quickly going to become standard and mandatory for all vehicles "real soon now".
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Unread 03-23-2015, 05:05 PM   #7
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This post was awesome; thanks for the smile! I wouldn't worry about the QDI/vs QDII. I'm from Mass. You can't really get yourself into too much adventure on Duxbury beach. Half the cars on that beach are Audi S4s anyway. Maybe if you went duning down the Cape, that'd be different.

I don't know if it's changed, but a year ago when I got my Hemi rocket, Brigham-Gill in Natick had the best prices. They priced the limited Hemi with big wheels and Nav for less than others quoted v6 base limiteds, no Nav. Granted you have to deal with Natick's traffic.....

I live and breathe the backup camera because I can hitch my boat to take down to Plymouth without getting out to line myself up.

But safety wise, the camera is a good idea.

My red JGC girl has been very well behaved, no problems. And the valet guys say that she's cooler than the BWM and M-class SUVs.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 07:51 PM   #8
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My overall sense is that you are working hard to justify the Altitude.
Is this the Jeep you want?
Why do you care what your friends drive?
Do you need a Jeep?
It seems to me that you want a jeep to drive on the beach for one trip, so I wonder why you need to buy a Jeep. You can rent a jeep to drive on the beach and not have to worry about salt water spray on your vehicle.
If you don't need a Jeep and want one, that's fine. Just pick one that you want with the options you want.

You have a long commute each day. There are vehicles that cost less and get better gas mileage.


1. Make a list of what you want as options on your next vehicle, whether it is a Jeep or something else.
2. Decide if you want an SUV, sedan or something else.
3. Take a long careful look at all brands and choose three based on visual appeal.
4. Go back to your list of options and eliminate the vehicle whose options don't match what you want.
5. If none of the three vehicles are left; choose another three.
6. Repeat this process until one vehicle is left.

During this process, don't compromise on options. Have you ever met someone who told you all about their car purchase and throughout the story said, "I really wanted a sunroof (insert any option) but had to settle on this." Of course, you can change your mind about options and be open to options you had not considered.
There is no replacement for displacement
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Unread 03-24-2015, 07:47 AM   #9
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Wow you have a lot going on there....

I have a 15 Altitude and will give you my impressions....

Backup camera is almost a must for me. Mine came without one and the first few times I had to back into a tight parking spot I was really challenged at how bad the side mirrors give you a decent view of where the rear end sits in relation to the back edge of the bumper. The rear window doesn't give you much to gauge that distance either and I also own a 30' motorhome (rarely parallel park that but you get my reference point) . Now that I have the camera it makes it much easier to whip around so I wouldn't discount this option, however it wasn't very hard adding one so keep that in mind if there are no Altitudes in your area with one.

Altitudes are hard to find in my area (Los Angeles) right now. When a dealer gets one they are sold quickly. It's a niche vehicle due to it's looks for sure. I do wish some of the higher option packages were available but for the most part comes fairly equipped. I have the sunroof, NAV, base 6 speaker stereo, and now backup camera. Mine does not have the towing package, upgraded stereo, or parking sensors. I believe other then 4WD that's about all you could add. The V6 is plenty powerful and gets decent gas mileage. Can't help you with the sand driving questions but this thing does move for an SUV if you put your foot in it. I have the black on black. Yes it does look more aggressive then the other models but subtle enough to not look to "fast and furious". I have my fair share of people ask me if I "blacked" it out myself because they've never seen one like it, which is cool but not for everybody.

I am leasing mine so in the end would I get another one....time will tell. If it holds up well the next one could be another Altitude. I came back to an SUV on this one. I looked at many cars before I signed for mine. Everything out right now bored me and this was the first car I drove that I said wow that's a little different. You're mileage will vary and I suggest you give it some thought. You've come this far so it's obvious the Jeep appeals to you. I'm not much of a follower so I could care less what my friends drive they aren't making the payment! Good luck. Car buying can be a stressful situation. Do your homework....
Drive it like you sole it!

Last edited by Robs15Altitude; 03-24-2015 at 08:27 AM..
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Unread 03-24-2015, 08:09 AM   #10
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YES!! The Jeep Grand Cherokee is a very classy vehicle with great potential to get you where you want to go!!
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Unread 03-24-2015, 09:41 AM   #11
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Thank you
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Unread 03-24-2015, 06:48 PM   #12
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We have had a silver 15 Altitude for 6 months now. Ours has the camera and the sunroof, and I can't say enough about this vehicle. My wife will not drive a car with a bunch of chrome on it so the Altitude made perfect sense for us. I'm not sure if I'd want to run those beautiful black 20s in the sand though.Good luck with your purchase!
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Unread 03-24-2015, 08:04 PM   #13
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When I first started looking at new JGC's, I was interested in the Altitude. They're so eye catching. I don't think you're going to be comfortable with that based on your post. I asked my local dealer if they had one I could check out, but there weren't any available that day. And then the sales guy said to me, "Why do you want an Altitude, it is a major ghetto ride and plus it will look out of style in a few years and when it's dirty it looks really dirty because of the black wheels."

I kinda looked at him like he had 3 heads, but all in all, I think you're having some of his same Altitude issues. If you're going to feel self conscious about it, and in it, then pass. I think the other posters here made some great suggestions on how to approach your dilemma. I'd bet that those who decide to buy Altitudes are 150% in love with the look of this car (and it IS beautifully done).

In the end, I decided that as much as I love to look at other peoples' Altitudes, it wasn't what I wanted to have for myself. But I still enjoy them whenever I see one pass by.
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Unread 03-25-2015, 05:33 AM   #14
Kev M
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That salesman was an idiot who was disingenuously trying to talk you into something on the lot.
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Unread 03-25-2015, 05:39 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Sondra3 View Post
But I still enjoy them whenever I see one pass by.
Or when others put up images of theirs! Like this..... I do love my Altitude and it fits well with the options, looks, comfort, and drive that I wanted.

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