One thing is constant in the list of the best off-road SUVs: the Jeep. This car brand has come a long way, from a military vehicle to one of the world’s most coveted automobiles. Jeeps, however, don’t come cheap. They aren’t as expensive as the Bugatti Chiron or the Rolls-Royce Sweptail, but their price tags are higher than most vehicle brands in their class.
Currently, the most expensive Jeep is the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, which starts at $86,000 without freight fees.
Why are Jeeps so expensive? This article seeks to answer this question and tell you so much more about the Jeep.
Jeep is classified as a sport utility vehicle (SUV), and SUVs are typically pricier than sedans. Why? Many car enthusiasts and consumers are drawn to the practicality of SUVs. Jeeps are expensive because they offer several benefits associated with sport utility vehicles.
Reasons to choose an SUV over a saloon car would include:
- Large storage space
- Sufficient legroom
- Large boot volume
- More height
- More passenger capacity
- Great off-roading capabilities
- Advanced safety features
Fundamental laws of economics dictate that the price of an item goes up when the supply decreases and the demand remains unchanged. This fact remains true for Jeeps. Jeep has deliberately reduced its fleet sales over the years. It has lesser car releases per decade than Toyota and other car brands in its league.
Moreover, some Jeeps are rare. Hence, worth a fortune. The JP CJ-10, for example, is still considered the ugliest Jeep ever produced. It wasn’t popular during its production days (1981 – 1985). Today, however, you’d have to spend over $20,000 to get it. That’s if you’re lucky to find one.
Jeep is a legendary car brand that is linked to adventure and freedom. The first Jeep was tailored to meet the U.S. Army specifications during World War II. Therefore, it had to be a sturdy car to withstand harsh weather conditions and rough terrain.
Many politicians and celebrities have owned and ridden Jeeps. America’s 32nd President, D. Roosevelt, once owned a Jeep. While on tour in Morocco, the Jeep was his car of choice. Queen Elizabeth II rode a Jeep while on a visit to Northern Ireland. Sir Winston Churchill watched the historical Normandy landing while seated on a Jeep.
It is such a rich history that makes Jeep a favorite among many car enthusiasts. The newest versions of this car brand carry the DNA of the original 4X4 Jeep while offering advanced features and functionalities. We can see significant improvements between the oldest Wrangler and newer models.
For example, in a comparison between the Jeep Wrangler JK and JL, you will notice that the JL has:
- Bigger flares
- A stretched wheelbase that offers a more spacious interior
- Aluminum doors and fender that make it lighter than the Jeep Wrangler JK
- An easy-to-fold windshield
- An intuitive UConnect™ multimedia system
- Greater turbo power
- High clearance bumpers
Thanks to its iconic status, the Jeep is one of the most popular SUVs in the world. It’s so recognizable that any car that looks anything close to it is often called a Jeep. Jeeps were first made available to the public in 1945, and have grown in popularity ever since for their high performance and reliability.
The Jeep Wrangler is a testament to how popular Jeeps are. It has earned the trust of loyal consumers as it gets better over the years. It has switched from coil springs to leaf springs, offering better handle and comfort to drivers. Also, the latest version of the Wrangler is roomier than its predecessors. Jeep has done a commendable job at improving the comfort of the Wrangler without jeopardizing its off-road capabilities.
Low Cost of Maintenance
Jeeps aren’t high maintenance. On average, a new Wrangler costs about $650 to maintain annually, which is almost as much as the national average. For a car built to beat the harshest driving conditions, the average maintenance cost of a Jeep is reasonably low.
You don’t have to worry about fixing the parts of a Jeep regularly as it is designed to last for decades, if not centuries. This type of quality and convenience comes at a cost that translates to big price tags.
High Resale Value
Depreciation accounts for more than a third of ownership costs. Jeep is one of the best car brands when it comes to value retention. Most Jeep models maintain 70 percent of their original value within the first decade. The 1988 Jeep Wrangler, for example, has maintained 40 to 60 percent of its original value.
It’s hard to say the same for other SUV brands like the BMW and Maserati. These brands depreciate by more than 60 percent over the first five years.
There’s a higher demand for cars that impressively hold their value because they have a better resale value than their counterparts. The Jeep Wrangler ranks as one of the best cars in terms of resale value, making it a car that most people would want to buy.
Why is the resale value of a car important?
It would be good if we could own one car forever and be satisfied with it. However, some car enthusiasts will never stop at the most recent car. They will be waiting for the next model and will want to own one. In the process, they’ll need to get rid of their old car and top up for a new car.
If the resale value of your car is low, you will sell it for a cheaper price. Then, you will have to top up more money to get the most recent car. If you don’t intend to sell your car, the depreciation and resale values are still of paramount importance.
If your car is wrecked, and you wish to seek compensation from an insurance company, the insurer will factor in depreciation to determine the actual cash value.
Advanced Security Features
Jeep combines advanced safety features with technology to give you the ultimate off-roading performance. These features include full-Speed forward collision warning, ParkView® Review Back-up Cameras, rear cross path detection, Keyless Entry N’ Go™, standard airbags, panic buttons, tire fill notification, and automatic headlights.
Better Than Its Competitors
Jeeps are designed better than most of their competitors. For example, The Jeep Cherokee has more advanced off-road features than Toyota’s RAV4. These features include a class-exclusive axle disconnect, a Selec-Terrain 4X4 management tool, and an advanced slip differential.
When compared to the Ford Escape, the Cherokee has a versatile seating space as well as ample cargo space. It sports high-tech features like real-time traffic display, a nine-speed automatic transmission, speed-sensitive wipers, and LED taillights. What’s more, it has improved performance options that include Trailer Sway Control and a towing capacity of 4,500.
These are just a few of the comparisons that would make many consumers go for Jeeps, despite the high buying prices.
Most Jeeps have removable doors. A Jeep is the only car you can drive doorless in the States (but not in Pennsylvania). This feature makes it one of the most versatile and unique cars. Additionally, this SUV is built with a solid, lightweight body that allows you to drive with confidence in almost any terrain.
When combined with other features, the uniqueness of Jeeps makes them timeless and pricey.
Jeep has done an excellent job of maintaining quality, improving user experience, and reducing supply. These elements, however, have made Jeeps so expensive. Not as expensive as many high-end cars, but expensive enough for the average SUV buyer.
Nonetheless, the good news is that the big price tags of Jeeps come with a myriad of perks. You get a better off-road experience, advanced safety measures, and a piece of America’s heritage and pride. You also get to enjoy low maintenance costs and high resale value.
I hope this article has answered your question of why Jeeps are expensive. Now you can go forth and own a Jeep, and rest assured that you’re getting value for your money.