Comfortable from the driver's seat. The cabin is much more of a quality job than in past Cherokees, with padded surfaces, no rattles or creaks, barely any wind noise and a decent sat-nav.
You sit in an authentically commanding driving position tailored by a multi-adjustable electrically powered seat, but the steering wheel's natural tilt is surprisingly far from the vertical. Fake wood inserts on the doors jar a bit, the glovebox is disappointingly small and those padded surfaces are just a touch too coarse and shiny to worry those Germans.
To drive, the Jeep feels like the tall but taut SUV it is. The steering (from the Giulietta) is much more accurate than a past Cherokee's, and the ride is mostly composed except for a choppiness over some ripples.
In 168bhp guise, driving all the wheels, the engine is subdued at speed and has adequate overtaking thrust, while the nine-speed auto shifts swiftly and unobtrusively.
There are no manual paddles but, should you fancy the futility of wading through all those ratios, you can tap the central selector back for up, forward for down.
Curiously, the 138bhp engine is more vocal and more obviously dieselly, at least when mated to front-wheel drive and a manual gearbox, as in the version we sampled.
It's a lot more entertaining to drive as a manual, though, with enough of a direct connection between driver and powertrain to goad the chassis into a bit more interactivity. Unfortunately, in this form the activity extends to a livelier, bouncier ride.
We also tried the 268bhp, V6-powered Trailhawk – likely to cost around £38,000 – on the off-road course at Fiat's Balocco proving ground, and there's no denying its ability to climb extraordinary gradients and pick its way across structure-bending articulation tests.
It has as standard the Active Drive II low-range gear set that's optional in the Limited, plus a lockable rear differential that comes as part of the Active Drive Lock pack, which also adds Mud to the 'Selec-Terrain' Auto, Sport, Snow and Mud/Sand settings that come with all four-wheel-drive (Active Drive I) Cherokees.
The Lock pack also includes Hill Ascent Control to go with the II pack's Hill Descent Control; dialling the former into a constant 3mph climb up a 70 per cent gradient shows how painlessly capable an off-roader the Trailhawk is.