Following in the wheel tracks of its Grand-er sibling—which was recently named Official Winter Vehicle of New England—the 2014 Jeep Cherokee has captured another impressive honor from a regional media group, winning the SUV of the Year award from the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press Association.
Said Andre Smirnov, president of the association: "The Rocky Mountain region challenges any vehicle to the maximum with high altitude and constantly changing weather conditions. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee is equipped to handle this tough environment, while also offering comfort, utility, and efficiency. RMAP is pleased to recognize the Jeep Cherokee as the 2014 Rocky Mountain ‘SUV of the Year.’"
Added Mike Manley, president and CEO of the Jeep Brand: “Jeep Cherokee has been a tremendous success in the marketplace since its arrival in Jeep showrooms last fall. We are grateful that, like consumers nationwide, the RMAP members have recognized the benchmark Jeep capability, world-class on-road dynamics, efficiency, innovation and craftsmanship that Cherokee offers.”
Now, about that sales success: There has been some debate about the extent of the marketplace momentum for the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, with those in the "pro" camp pointing to its five-digit monthly sales totals and steadily increasing month-over-month increases. On the opposite side of the fence, others note that the Cherokee remains well off the sales pace of the segment leaders, as evidenced by 13,796 deliveries that were less than half the total of the Ford Escape (28,701 units) or Honda CR-V (28,657 units).
The key here is that, while Ford and Honda are indisputably mainstream brands, selling 235,198 and 117,738 units in March, respectively, Jeep's position in the industry, with 57,983 March sales, is down around the same level as Kia, which sold 54,777 units in the previous month.
And one should remember the words of that great American philosopher Bruce Springsteen, who once noted that “From small things, mama, big things one day come.”