Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit vs Overland: Which Model is the Best Choice?

jeep grand cherokee summit vs overland

When shopping for a new Jeep Grand Cherokee, you’ll soon discover there are several different trim levels to choose from, spanning a wide range of prices and features. Two popular trims that combine luxury with capability are the Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland models. But with similar styling and performance, how do you decide which of these trims is the best option?

The answer largely depends on your budget and preferences. The luxurious Summit commands a higher price tag and prioritizes creature comforts and technology. Meanwhile, the Overland offers excellent value with enhanced off-road prowess.

In this comprehensive comparison guide, we’ll examine the key differences between the Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland models across all major categories. From exterior design and powertrains to interior features, technology, capability, pricing and more, we’ll cover everything you need to know to determine the best Grand Cherokee trim for your needs.

By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of the unique advantages of both the Summit and Overland models. You’ll know exactly which Grand Cherokee trim offers the optimal blend of luxury, technology, capability and value to suit your priorities. Let’s get started!

Exterior Design and Styling

On the outside, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland share the same iconic silhouette and imposing presence. Both ride on the same wheelbase and share overall dimensions. Some key exterior design similarities include:

  • Signature 7-slot front grille with chrome accents
  • Sleek, aerodynamic profile with sloping roofline
  • Dual exhaust tips integrated into the rear bumper
  • Handsome and contemporary LED headlights and taillights

That said, there are some subtle styling cues that help distinguish the Overland from the flagship Summit:

  • Overland badging on the front doors helps identify the trim
  • More adventurous looking front and rear fascia with silver accents
  • Body-color wheel arches instead of chrome on the Summit

Additionally, the Summit model sits on exclusive 20-inch polished aluminum wheels, versus the 19-inch wheels equipped on the Overland. The Summit’s larger wheels fill out the wheel wells more substantially for a premium look.

But overall, the Summit and Overland have far more similarities than differences when it comes to exterior design. Both share the same modern, refined aesthetic that stays true to Jeep’s off-road heritage.

Powertrains and Performance

Under the hood, the 2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland continue to share the same engine options. This gives buyers the flexibility to choose the powerplant that best suits their needs.

The standard engine on both trims is a 3.6L V6 generating 293 horsepower. This potent V6 delivers smooth, spirited acceleration paired with respectable fuel economy.

For more muscle, Jeep also offers a 5.7L V8 producing 357 horsepower. The available Hemi V8 transforms the Grand Cherokee into a high-performance SUV with tremendous torque. Fuel economy takes a hit, but so does 0-60 mph acceleration.

Both engines come mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive. Four-wheel drive is optionally available for enhanced traction and control.

In terms of real world performance and power delivery, there are no major differences between the Summit and Overland models. But when properly equipped, both are clearly capable of keeping up with traffic and tackling demanding terrain.

Off-Road Capability

A core part of the Jeep Grand Cherokee’s appeal is its off-road readiness. This mid-size SUV is designed to seamlessly transition from pavement to dirt, rock, sand and snow.

The Summit and Overland trims share Jeep’s Quadra-Lift air suspension system. This automatically adjusts ground clearance from a low 8.7 inches for easy access, up to a maximum of 11.3 inches for traversing rocky trails and deep ruts.

But the Overland model does gain a slight edge in off-road prowess thanks to its Selec-Terrain traction management system with 5 settings (Auto, Sport, Sand/Mud, Snow, Rock). The Summit also includes Selec-Terrain, but only offers Auto, Snow and Sand/Mud modes.

Between its expanded traction settings, higher profile tires, and adventurous styling cues, the Overland is clearly the more capable off-road option. But the Summit is still no slouch – its Quadra-Lift air suspension and advanced AWD system equip it to explore challenging terrain.

Interior Design and Materials

The interior is where the Summit and Overland trims start to diverge into different directions. Open the door of the Overland, and you’re greeted with an undeniably upscale and comfortable cabin. Premium leather seats come standard, as do unique copper accents throughout the interior.

But upgrade to the Summit, and the interior reaches new heights of luxury and sophistication. The seats feature quilted leather and accent piping for a more elegant look and feel. Satin chrome and open-pore waxed wood trim elevate the ambiance.

The Overland provides a thoroughly modern and enjoyable interior environment. Yet the Summit dials up both the quality and quantity of premium materials to surround occupants in luxury.

Seating and Comfort

All Summit and Overland models come standard with 5 passenger seating. But opting for the second row bench seat bumps capacity up to 7.

In terms of seat comfort, both trims impress. The Overland’s standard leather seats are power adjustable, ensuring occupants can dial in their ideal position.

But only the Summit takes comfort a step further with ventilated front seats that circulate cool air on hot days. This is an exclusive feature not found on the Overland trim.

Out back, rear passengers benefit from over 40 inches of legroom on both models – enough stretch out space for adults to ride comfortably on long road trips.

Cargo Capacity

With the rear seats up, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland have 36.3 cubic feet of cargo capacity. Fold the 60/40 split second row down, and you unlock a cavernous 68.3 cubic feet of space.

This generous cargo capacity ensures you can pack all your gear for adventurous weekend getaways. Small businesses and contractors will also appreciate the ample room for tools and materials.

When it comes to hauling flexibility and versatility, the Summit and Overland are evenly matched. Both provide plenty of space for passengers and cargo without compromise.

Technology Features and Infotainment

One area where Jeep invested heavily for 2023 is technology. All Grand Cherokee models now come equipped with the latest Uconnect 5 infotainment system displayed on a standard 10.25” touchscreen.

Uconnect 5 represents a major leap forward in responsiveness and capability. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are now included, along with integrated Alexa. The system is quick, intuitive, and packed with features.

Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland owners will appreciate the customizable home screen, natural voice recognition, and crystal clear graphics. Standard navigation on both trims also helps you explore new terrain.

Overall, there are no significant tech differences between the two trims. Both provide the latest tech features like wireless charging, multiple USB ports, Bluetooth, SiriusXM, and premium audio.

However, the Summit does add a few minor upgrades like a rear seat entertainment system and 19-speaker McIntosh stereo. But the core Uconnect 5 experience is similar.

Driver Assistance and Safety

Jeep equips all new Grand Cherokee models with a robust set of safety features. These include:

  • Forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking
  • Blind spot monitoring
  • Rear cross traffic alert
  • Adaptive cruise control with stop and go
  • Active lane management
  • Automatic high beams
  • Rain sensing windshield wipers

But the Summit goes further by expanding the safety suite with additional technologies like:

  • Parallel and perpendicular park assist – helps automatically steer into parking spots
  • Night vision camera – detects pedestrians and animals in total darkness
  • Intersection collision assist – helps avoid crashes at intersections
  • Drowsy driver detection system

The Summit leaves no feature behind when it comes to protecting passengers and preventing accidents. If you prioritize cutting-edge safety tech, the Summit gets the nod.

Cost and Value Comparison

Now for the moment of truth – how much more does the luxurious Summit trim command over the capable Overland model?

For 2023 models, expect to pay right around $58,000 for a base Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4×2 with the V6 engine. Stepping up to the Summit raises the cost to approximately $66,000 for a similar V6 4×2 configuration.

That’s a difference of around $8,000 if you want the ultimate luxury experience provided by the Summit. For some buyers, that premium may be hard to justify.

However, opting for the larger V8 engine on the Overland instead of the base V6 (a $3,295 upgrade) helps narrow that price gap. When similarly configured, the Summit represents closer to a $5,000 price increase over the Overland.

At the end of the day, the Summit clearly commands a higher price tag. But keep in mind it also comes loaded with extra upscale features and technology that you may value and appreciate.

Which Model is the Right Choice?

After taking a comprehensive look at what both models offer, which Grand Cherokee trim emerges as the best option for you?

Here are a few key factors to help guide your decision:

  • The Overland is ideal if you prioritize off-road performance and value. You’ll get enhanced capability for less money.
  • The luxurious Summit is worth the upgrade if you want maximum comfort, tech and safety features.
  • The Summit proves the better road trip vehicle thanks to cooled seats and more amenities.
  • Families may appreciate the Summit’s expanded safety technologies and entertainment options.
  • If your budget is flexible, the Summit takes luxury and sophistication to new heights.

As you can see, there’s no universally “right” choice between these two outstanding Grand Cherokee models. Your own preferences and needs must guide you.

For many buyers, the Overland will hit the sweet spot of capability, utility, and thoughtful features at a reasonable price.

Yet for others who want a no-compromise luxury SUV, and have the budget to accommodate it, the pampering Summit may be hard to pass up.


The Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit and Overland trims represent two appealing choices with the same iconic style and potent powertrains. The Overland provides excellent capability and value, while the Summit spares no expense when it comes to luxury, comfort and protection.

By weighing your priorities, needs and budget, you can determine if the upgrade to the Summit is justified. There’s no wrong answer between these two impressive SUVs. The Grand Cherokee continues to deliver style, performance and prestige, regardless of which trim you select.

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