Q: We’re looking at the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, and we’re enthusiastic about it, but we’re afraid that all the bad press about the redesign will spoil its resale value in five or six years. What do you think?
A: It’s a little early to tell how the public at large will take to the far-less-boxy design in the long run. But it’s worth knowing that most of the negative comments late last fall about the rather dramatic, not especially Jeep-ish new look (especially in in the front end) was from traditionalists who felt tampering that much with a known look was idiotic.
I can’t say I agree with the negative responses. I think it’s a nice change from the can’t-tell-one-from-the-other designs of today’s SUVs, which have not been altered much in a decade.
The “insiders” are buzzing that some modifications to the exterior of the 2014 are expected, perhaps wiping away some of the more extreme aspects. Sounds like you’re fretting a bit about the prospects of getting stuck with a one-year wonder that no one will want. If that’s the case, you might wait a few more months to find out what happens with the 2015. By spring, that should all be clear.
Q: It’s time for my first oil change with my new car, and the owner’s manual says I should use 0W-20 oil. Is that a typographical error for 10W-20 oil?
A: No typo. There is, indeed, 0W-20 oil. Better than the oil of yore, it still does the lubricating job oil is supposed to perform but you’ll get more miles per gallon because the engine doesn’t have to work so hard to move parts through this thinner substance.
Q: Are all the anti-drink-and-drive campaigns and crackdowns on the highways significantly reducing drunk driving and drunk-driving-related accidents?
A: They may be. It’s impossible to know what the situation would have been in the absence of these efforts. Nevertheless, numbers are not decreasing. In 2012, 10,322 people were killed in alcohol-impaired-driving accidents, according to figures just recently released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That was an increase of 4.6 percent over 2011.
In fact, alcohol-impaired-driving fatalities made up 31 percent of the total number of vehicle fatalities in 2012.
© CTW Features
What’s your question? Sharon Peters would like to hear about what’s on your mind when it comes to caring for, driving and repairing your vehicle. Email Sharon@ctwfeatures.com.