2020 Jeep Cherokee vs. 2020 Lexus NX Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 5 points, IIHS rates the Forward Collision Warning with Crash Mitigation optional in the Cherokee as “Superior.” The NX Series scores only 4 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

Compared to metal, the Cherokee’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Lexus NX Series has a metal gas tank.

Both the Cherokee and the NX Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front and rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Jeep Cherokee is safer than the Lexus NX Series:

Cherokee

NX Series

Driver

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

204

209

Neck Injury Risk

38.2%

46%

Neck Stress

408 lbs.

509 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

368/516 lbs.

480/609 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

166

355

Neck Injury Risk

37%

42%

Neck Stress

218 lbs.

295 lbs.

Neck Compression

26 lbs.

70 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

241/259 lbs.

442/307 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Jeep Cherokee is safer than the Lexus NX Series:

Cherokee

NX Series

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

64

192

Abdominal Force

133 G’s

148 G’s

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

264

317

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

15 inches

HIC

203

542

Hip Force

490 lbs.

828 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

There are almost 10 times as many Jeep dealers as there are Lexus dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Cherokee’s warranty.

Reliability

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To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Cherokee has a standard 700-amp battery. The NX Series’ 580-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

Engine

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The Cherokee has more powerful engines than the NX Series:

Horsepower

Cherokee 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

270 HP

Cherokee 3.2 DOHC V6

271 HP

NX 300h 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid

194 HP

NX 300 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

235 HP

As tested in Motor Trend the Jeep Cherokee turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the NX 300 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.:

Cherokee

NX Series

Zero to 60 MPH

6.6 sec

7 sec

Quarter Mile

15.2 sec

15.3 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

On the EPA test cycle the Cherokee FWD turbo 4 cyl. gets better fuel mileage than the NX 300 FWD (23 city/31 hwy vs. 22 city/28 hwy).

Regardless of its engine, the Cherokee’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) Lexus only offers an automatic engine start/stop system on the NX Series 300h.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Jeep Cherokee uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine for maximum performance). The NX 300 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Cherokee has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the NX Series Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (15.9 vs. 14.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Cherokee has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The NX Series doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

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A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Jeep Cherokee, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the NX Series.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Cherokee stops much shorter than the NX Series:

Cherokee

NX Series

70 to 0 MPH

166 feet

183 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

129 feet

136 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

139 feet

142 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

For better traction, the Cherokee Trailhawk’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the NX Series (245/65R17 vs. 235/55R18).

The Cherokee’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the NX Series F Sport’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Cherokee offers optional 19-inch wheels. The NX Series’ largest wheels are only 18-inches.

The Cherokee has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The NX Series doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Cherokee offers an optional full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the NX Series, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which limits mileage and speed before replacement.

Suspension and Handling

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The Cherokee’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The NX Series doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Cherokee’s wheelbase is 1.8 inches longer than on the NX Series (106.5 inches vs. 104.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Cherokee is 1.2 inches wider in the front and 1.3 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the NX Series.

The Cherokee Limited 4x4 handles at .79 G’s, while the NX 300 F Sport AWD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Cherokee Latitude 4x4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the NX 300h AWD (27.1 seconds @ .62 average G’s vs. 27.8 seconds @ .63 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the Cherokee has a 1.2 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the NX 300h (7.9 vs. 6.7 inches), allowing the Cherokee to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Cherokee Trailhawk’s minimum ground clearance is 1.8 inches higher than on the NX 300 (8.7 vs. 6.9 inches).

Chassis

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The Jeep Cherokee may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 350 pounds less than the Lexus NX Series.

The front grille of the Cherokee (except Overland/Trailhawk) uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The NX Series doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Cherokee Overland offers available computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The NX Series doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

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The Cherokee has 31.9 cubic feet more passenger volume than the NX Series (103.5 vs. 71.6).

The Cherokee has 1.2 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front shoulder room, .4 inches more rear headroom and 4.2 inches more rear legroom than the NX Series.

Cargo Capacity

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The Cherokee has a much larger cargo volume than the NX Series with its rear seat up (27.6 vs. 17.7 cubic feet).

Payload and Towing

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The Cherokee’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the NX Series’ (2000 vs. 0 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Lexus NX 300h AWD is only 2000 pounds. The Cherokee offers up to a 4500 lbs. towing capacity.

The Cherokee has a higher standard payload capacity than the NX Series (1000 vs. 895 lbs.).

Servicing Ease

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The Cherokee has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The NX Series doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

Ergonomics

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The Cherokee’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The NX Series’ power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

Both the Cherokee and the NX Series offer optional heated front seats. The Cherokee Overland also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the NX Series.

The Cherokee offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The NX Series doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The Cherokee Limited/Trailhawk/Overland’s optional ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The NX Series doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Cherokee is less expensive to operate than the NX Series because it costs $1009 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Cherokee than the NX Series, including $108 less for a water pump, $55 less for a starter, $405 less for fuel injection, $354 less for a timing belt/chain and $123 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The Jeep Cherokee outsold the Lexus NX Series by almost four to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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