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OverlandZJ
August 23rd, 2017, 09:26
I'v been searching the past few months for a clean 5.9L Grand Cherokee without very much luck. Recently an 06 Commander with Hemi crossed my path.. and it's got me thinking.

I'm betting there's a few here with 1st hand knowledge of these rigs. I read the Hemi's are very stout engines, but not much else as far as reliability on these models. I'd appreciate y'alls input..

Were you happy with the Jeep?

ExTankerGuy
August 28th, 2017, 06:30
Fore Wheeler (Dan) has one.

OverlandZJ
August 28th, 2017, 08:45
Fore Wheeler (Dan) has one.

I had an apt for Saturday to view the Jeep, then someone swooped in Friday night and bought it.

But I'm gonna add these to the search list.. thanks, i'll PM Dan.

WB9YZU
November 16th, 2017, 11:44
I have a 4.7L Flex model.
It rides well, has plenty of cargo room (When the last row of seats is folded flat), and seems easy to service.
So far I have done struts and shocks, muffler, and changed oil a 1/2 dozen times.
Oil change is nice in part due to some engineer putting a drip rail in under the oil filter which channels the oil in front of the cross member.

Other than that, on my unit, the paint is shit, and the front fenders rusted out on the bottom at the body because of poor design. Actually same basic design as the XJ, but the water from the windshield drains directly in to the space between the door and the fender. There is no preventing dirt from collecting at that fender/body junction.
Fortunately, the entire bodywork is held on by plastic rivets, so if the fender does rot off, it doesn't flap.

It also gets 17 combined, with the highest gas mileage (20) at 60mph. Took it on vacation to ID and got an average of 17.5mpg over the trip according to the lie-o-meter.

JohnX
November 16th, 2017, 15:39
My only experience with hemis has been broken valve springs...two of them, two different vehicles. One I suspect was abuse, owner thought he was a racecar driver? The other seemed to be for no apparent reason.

Two, in my opinion, is far too many to see in my shop considering I do not work on a very many hemis to begin with.

Kittrell
November 16th, 2017, 21:14
My Gen III (2010) 5.7 broke a spring and dropped a valve the day after I bought it. I drove it from OKC to Denver the day before straight through with no issue. Next morning merging onto the highway the spring snapped. Lucky the valve only bent slightly and my head was undamaged. New spring and valve and I was back I business. Only 68k on the motor, single owner before me, so that left a bad taste in my mouth. That's not to say I wouldn't by another one, loved the power, 365+ HP turned those 37's like a dream.

http://photodonn.novarata.net/_data/i/upload/2015/12/30/20151230180919-284912a7-xl.jpg

JohnX
November 16th, 2017, 21:40
Damn, that is pure beauty.

Cottontail
November 17th, 2017, 08:18
My only complaint with the 5.7 Hemi Commander I have is the small fuel tank (-20 gal) and the 12.5 I get around town and the 8.4 I get towing.

Otherwise, I really like the Jeep. Comfortable and powerful and fairly luxurious.

NW-ZJ-SCOTT
November 18th, 2017, 15:22
I had a used 06 Hemi commander with under 100k for about 6 months, it was a dream car I had always wanted, and turned out to be a mild nightmare, Ever week was a new issue, some sensor failed and caused my 4low to not engage, without 4low the Lockers didn't engage

The nav deck failed, the remote start would not work in the mornings. But worked at the dealership During a diagnosis..

By 90k it needed plugs, waterpump, a lower radiator hose and a starter. Let me tell you, the starters not so simple to replace!!!

The clips broke on the 3rd row seats, So the seats would not collapse for cargo room until I found a trick online with 2 pennies to improvise (classy!)

The left rear OEM taillight was accumulating Water and shorting out bulbs

When I lifted it 2" for slightly larger tires, The Cylinder shutdown for improved highway flat out would not work anymore.. but it was super sensitive to begin with, you had to be going 64-70mph with cruise on. With a super small fuel tank and big v8, going to the gas station was getting old

I traded it in and have never looked back.. Every time I read into an issue, It seemed my issues were always common

WB9YZU
November 18th, 2017, 20:12
I guess I've got off good so far ;)

I agree with the gas tank issue, it's like they stepped back to 1985 when they sized fuel tanks. A 16 odd gallon fuel tank for a V8 in a 5 ton vehicle? :banghead:

I haven't seen any lift kits for it, just leveling kits.
No bumpers or other off-road accys.

How did it wheel? Closest I got to wheeling mine was an unimproved road in Craters NM.

OverlandZJ
November 19th, 2017, 09:45
Some good info.. thank You guys. Dan also responded with a nice detailed PM of his experiences also.

I was under the impression the 5.7 regularly gave 20mpg, you guys are contradicting that. The HP and MPG increase was the main factor on looking past a 5.9 ZJ. My sonn reports 20mpg in his new Ram, and my bud just bought a 13' WK2 and is figuring he's close to that. I can only surmise the Commanders weight is a contributing factor.

I considered a Hemi WK, but since the ZJ, I hit my head on a-pillar of our WJ and 06 WK. Without fail 90% of the time.

I missed on a clean lower mileage Commander with leveling kit for silly cheap (5500) as I mentioned earlier.. I would have bought that rig on impulse had I had the chance.

How many are also having issue with the exhaust manifold bolts? I hear that's also common and the fix being the SRT 6.1 bolts.

How many have broken interior door handles?

Kittrell
November 19th, 2017, 10:47
I think I ran about 12.5 mpg on the highway at 70 mph with 37's, 6" of lift, and 4.10 gears, 11.5 around town. I disabled the MDS as it was a known POS in the Chargers with the same motor. Might have been a vendor issue being why no one ever mentioned it in the WK. I never smacked my head in it (6'2.5") but my hair did scrape the headliner. Never broke any interior pieces, I really did like the rig overall. I would definitely get a 2008+ for the interior facelift. I'm assuming they updated the Commanders the same year. My only complaint was no aftermarket aluminum radiators, I did push the temp and mountain pass climbs. It was never an issue but was a bit uncomfortable.

Cottontail
November 19th, 2017, 13:32
Mine has broken manifold bolt(s). It ticks at start up for about 15-30 seconds then goes away.

Kittrell
November 19th, 2017, 13:45
Here is a 30 gallon auxiliary if you move your spare tire. I would have figured out how to get one of these here for the WK if I kept it.

https://longrangeautomotive.com.au/Jeep-Grand-Cherokee-WH-Jeep-Commander-XH-110L-Auxiliary~270

https://longrangeautomotive.com.au/img/925/528

Cottontail
March 7th, 2018, 10:42
Just to update - at 130xxx miles, my heater hose assembly and radiator took a turd. Needed to replace both to the tune of $900+. I towed with it last week and got about 11 mpg with a 1000 lb trailer behind it. Not sure if I should still expect 8-9 with my XJ behind it.

I'm at the point of almost regretting the purchase and may look into trading it for a Ram in the next few months - especially since I want to tow to Moab for the 35th.

WB9YZU
March 11th, 2018, 21:08
Don't feel bad, thats about what I get pulling the boat to the lake.
(4500 lb boat & trailer).

Remember to use the "tow" power selector :)