Cherokee instrument cluster with Stop/Start

Hands On with the 2015 Jeep Cherokee Stop/Start system

At a recent Jeep event, we went hands-on with the 2015 Jeep Cherokee with its new stop/start system to improve fuel economy. Find out how it stacks to some of the competition's similar systems.

While at high altitude in Colorado, we drove the new 2015 Cherokee on a brief course designed to showcase the engine Stop/Start system. We took full advantage of the chance to use it in various scenarios and compare it to other vehicles with similar technology that we've driven in the past. While the Cherokee's may not be the best we've seen, it certainly is high up the list of favorites.

Funny enough, the chance to try this came as a side note to an event meant to showcase the new Jeep Renegade, which you can read about here. We were asked by Chrysler representatives to keep quiet about the Start/Stop tech we sampled, however, until today, for marketing reasons.

How Stop/Start Works
Now, we're free to give you our driving impressions, analysis, and thoughts on this system as it compares to others. To begin with, briefly, a Stop/Start system simply shuts off the engine when the vehicle is stopped and automatically starts it again when it's ready to go again. It's a relatively simple improvement that requires only a more robust starter and a few electronic controls to implement, but it can greatly improve fuel economy in the city where vehicles stop-and-go often.

In most vehicles, including the 2015 Jeep Cherokee we focus on today, the Stop/Start system works by simply turning the engine off when the vehicle is stopped, such as at a stop light or in traffic. When the driver lets go of the brake pedal, the engine is automatically started up again. It's a popular feature on most hybrid vehicles and is not proliferating into standard gasoline engines as well. A few things may pre-empt the Stop/Start system, such as climate control requirements, a low battery, engine faults, and so forth.

How It Feels in the 2015 Cherokee
For the most part, the Stop/Start system in the Cherokee is automated. We drove the Limited 4x4 model with a 3.2-liter V6 and new 9-speed automatic transmission. This 2015 Jeep Cherokee was well-equipped at $38,760, delivered. The Stop/Start engaged as soon as we brought the Cherokee to a complete stop at our first intersection on the course. The delay is roughly one second in length between a soft, comfortable stop and the engine turning off. The delay to re-start was a little less than that, happening as soon as the driver's foot is lifted from the brake pedal.

At a hard stop, the delay to turn off the engine is a bit longer, not happening until the vehicle is at a fully motionless state (not rocking). Re-start was still within a second.

For the driver, the engine shutting off is largely unnoticed unless you're anticipating it. For passengers, it's hardly felt at all, even when waiting for it or trying to feel it happen. It's more obvious when the windows are down, but only slightly more so as the V6 is a very quiet engine when idling. The re-start of the engine is far more obvious and comes through even when one isn't anticipating it happening, but this doesn't impart discomfort.

Comparing the Cherokee to Others
Few in the Cherokee's segment feature Stop/Start as an option, but several vehicles outside of its segment do. The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid, for example, has Stop/Start as standard, but in that vehicle, the engine cutting off and starting back up is disconcerting and tinny-sounding. So much so that several times while driving it, I was concerned that the engine had stalled out until I realized what had happened. Other vehicles, particularly V6 models in the Chevrolet lineup, feature very well-done Stop/Start systems as do most of the Toyota hybrid vehicles such as the Prius line and Camry Hybrid.

In comparison to other models with this technology as a whole, the 2015 Jeep Cherokee is a very good example of a well-done Stop/Start system. It's not quite perfect, but it's far better than many.


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Comments

i hate this feature so much in my new jeep I am ready to take it back. It is very obvious. Annoying as hell. And doesn't help with fuel consumption at full. Your review is obviously biased.
Marjorie, if you really dislike it that bad, just turn it off in your Uconnect software. I have a 2016 V-6 Trailhawk and have run with the start/stop system turned off and also with it enabled. I have decided that I will go forth with the system enabled. Once I get the system understood, I can live with it easily and can manipulate it to not be problematic for me.
Can you explain in more depth how to disable Start/Stop in UConnect software? I have a 2016 Trailhawk and would like to permanently disable (and not have to hit manual overide button every time after startup). What menu is it under?
I want to permanently disable start/stop feature, tired of manual override every time I get in vehicle. 2015 Jeep Cherokee.
I would like to do the same
Where in the Uconnect Software ? I have a '17 Trailhawk and hate this feature !
Just shut it off... There is an on off button..
the button looks like an "A" and an arrow around it, it is located below the radio screen, next to the "Sport Mode" and other buttons.
I also hate this "feature" also and when I say hate it I really really hate it!!! It's useless and I can't stand that you have to shut it off EVERY time!!
i am taking my jeep back for the 4th time in 5200 miles I'm ready for some one to fix it or give me a new one and i luv the jeep, but this is the last time as i will invoke the lemon law the dealer has not been honest with me
I believe with engine on and in park, hit apps and then the gears (settings ). Poke around in that menu, it's there. If you really need me to, I can go outside and find it, video it, and link video to you from YouTube.
Hi Larry, I've searched every menu, to no avail..... Also have thoroughly checked manuals and online, all reference the manual overide as solution. (At every start). If you wouldn't mind making a quick video and send link, that would be great! Thanks in advance for the help, I really dislike the stop/start feature, otherwise love this Jeep!
Larry was incorrect. The feature cannot be permanently disabled.
I hate the start/stop and wasted time looking to turn it off. Jeep needs to download a program so we can turn it off. I
This is how it should be. On startup, start/stop is off by default. You need to push the button to activate the feature. Problem solved. JEEP, ARE YOU LISTENING? ???????
On the 2016 model there's a button under the radio that disables this feature.
I also have a 2015 Jeep and hate the start stop. I checked with the Chrysler dealer and there is no way to permanent turn this hated feature off. If a consumer doesn't like it, he/she still has to press the "A" button each time the car is turned on. Each time I start my vehicle, I go through a routine of turning off the start stop and also turning off the music system (there is no off switch that keeps the radio/music off....it restarts each and every time you start the car. Also very annoying but no way to overcome this either. I swear I will never buy another vehicle with this feature.
Dennis...I also HATE the start stop...but I can help you with the radio...it took me 13 months to figure out on my 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee but I now have the 2016 and it works on that also. Pushing the button only mutes the radio...always turn volume down all the way and wait until your volume icon hides..do not push the button. Once you shut off and restart...it will be silent...the radio screen displays but at least it is not blaring full blast!
Your right. I went looking, thinking for sure that I had seen a way too select it. Nope. I sat in my 2016 trying to find it, and it's not there. I was wrong. Sorry.
We just bought a 2016 cheeroke for my fiance. She hated this because if you arent used to it it is unnerving. I found that in the Uconnect settittings we could selct how lon it takes for the auot stop to occur. We set it to 10 minutes which should virtually guarantee it doesnt turn off whe she stops under any normal conditions. We are on our first day with this car but if we couldnt turn that feature off im afraid wed be trading this car in rather quick. It doesnt bother me, but ive had some time behind the wheel in hybrids so i have adjusted to this and actully like the idea that the car stops spewing exhaust whe it comes to a full stop. Hope that helps someone else.
Actually, your ten minutes that you selected is the setting for how long the radio will play after the key is shut off and no does are opened. Like, you arrive to pick your child up at school, you pull in and turn the car off, but you are just chilling and waiting. After 10 minutes the car shuts off all of the power to the radio and such. There is only one way to disable the auto start/stop that I've seen, and that is unplug the hood closure sensor located on the drivers side, near the firewall. Your alarm and for locks will still work, but the auto start stop will not. I've not probably tried it, as my start/stop system works great and has no issues. But it's out on a Cherokee Forum that I had once ran across. Try it and let us know.
Is this normal (ie working properly)?: when I come to a stop & the engine stops, it starts up again when I put intp Park, lik when I reach my destination & want the engine to stay off.
This happens to me also, but not all the time. Did you figure out what the problem is? It worries me.
Hi Marc, that sounds like a good work around (extending delay time out), can you elaborate on the specific menu location for setting the delay timeout? Thanks!
Check Larry's reply. The 10 min delay suggested earlier has nothing to do with the start/stop that many people hate. I am going to try the " unplug the hood closure sensor" method. Anything to over come that horrendous design flaw of Jeep's. Does anyone know how to set the radio so that it has an on/off feature like other radios ? (ie: my radio starts up every time I start the car and there is no way to over come that ...another huge mistake of the program designers). The volume can be turned down but the sd card still cycles through the music .
Unplugging the hood closure sensor seems to have worked. A readout of "stop/start not working, get serving " shows for the first engine startup but this goes away . Thanks to Larry for the suggestion.
Do you know if the Remote Start still works (after unplugging hood closure sensor)?
I just tried it and it does still work. I forwarded the info to the local Chrysler dealership and asked them if there was anything detrimental about unplugging the hood closure sensor. Haven't received a reply yet.
Chris, According to the forums, the remote start still works, you do not lose any function other than the auto start/stop. Again, I've not tried it, I actually like the feature :-) I can see this becoming standard in vehicles to reduce burning dinosaurs at red lights. What I do when I want to beat another guy out of the holeshot, is I'll watch the red lights adjacent to my flow and when I see them go yellow I'll lift on my brake to trigger the restart. Now I'm ready for my light to go green, I'll change feet to left on brake and right on throttle and pretend it's the Christmas tree at the drag strip. When my eye sees it change I'll drop the skinny one to the rug like I'm mad at it. But, if I'm driving like a sane, middle aged father like normal, the system has zero effect on me. I slowly lift the brake and move to the throttle and the car is easily running long before I make the move. Do some of you drive with two feet, use left for brakes and right for throttle? I've seen women do that, but never men, but that could explain the disdain for the start/stop. You would be able to hit the throttle every time before the engine started and it would likely start/jerk/suck bad.
Larry, we all drive differently for various conditions and terrains. Living in the Northeast, hunting fishing, semi off roading, with minimal traffic lights and never sitting in traffic, I opt NOT to use this feature (and scoff at having to hit a disable button after each start up) For the tree huggers having to save a few pennies by not running an idling engine, so be it, to each his own. Let me know how much it's saving on vehicle wear from excessive starter/flywheel, battery, etc... Let alone shuddering in sub zero weather on stop/start up.... Great I guess, if your love that sinking feeling of, "is it gonna stall??" I am performance driven, also own a couple Mustangs, and for a $40k off road high performance fully loaded Cherokee Trailhawk...... and as the guy footing the bill, I don't want the feature, period. Yet another useless feature that is being driven down the throats of consumers!

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