Video: This Old Jeep Grand Cherokee Is Still Very Good Off-Road – Check It Out Next to a VW Touareg

It may seem that a Touareg vs. Grand Cherokee shootout off-road is all fun; well, it is – and one of these vehicles is up for sale!

Thanks to John from Kansas, we were able to take the Touareg vs. Grand Cherokee challenge to one of our favorite locations, Cliffhanger 1.0. John bought this 2000 WJ Grand Cherokee to replace some of his more impractical performance vehicles. He wanted to revisit his childhood when his father brought him off-road. Also, he needed a vehicle to haul around his newly born twins!

If you’re interested in buying his 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee, head to and check it out!

He went on the hunt for a Jeep Grand Cherokee and found one with the Limited package. Along with the V8, his Limited also came with skid plates. It also has the beefy Quadratrack II 4×4 system, which works kind of like an all-wheel-drive (AWD) system, until he engages four-low. There is no two, or four-high setting.

After purchasing the vehicle in 2011 (in Missouri), John added a four-inch lift kit. He added wheels off a JK and then mounted huge BFGoodrich KM3s. With that lift, he was more than able to stuff those tires underneath, and still had space for good articulation. He then added a rear locker and manually disconnecting brackets for his sway bar.

Touareg vs. Grand Cherokee on Cliffhanger 1.0

Despite the big differences between these two vehicles, they do have a few things in common. Both are V8s, both have rear lockers, and both are equipped with fairly (or very) aggressive off-road tires. Other than that, they are very different, with completely different four-wheel-drive systems. Still, both are mighty capable.

On Cliffhanger 1.0, Tommy suffers from a lack of grip, and he has to alter his trajectory. On the other hand, John dominates the hill without breaking a sweat. His Jeep Grand Cherokee is nearly unstoppable, and it’s a clever build all-around.

Modifications and Maintenance:


  • Front calipers (Akebono upgrade), front rotors/pad replaced (200k)
  • Brake fluid flush (200k)


  • Nitro front axle shafts (215k miles)
  • Timken wheel bearings (front and rear), Spicer rear seals (215k miles)
  • Spicer ball joints (215k miles)
  • Front Driveshaft: Carolina Driveline (greaseable, 150k miles)
  • Rear driveshaft: stock
  • Aussie Locker professionally installed at 220k miles. This is an automatic lunch box style locker that is fully engaged when torque is applied. Around turns, the Aussie unlocks, which allows the wheels to spin at different speeds. Lunch box lockers, by design, are louder than selectable lockers. It is normal to hear ratcheting noises at low speeds.


  • New alternator and battery (215k)
  • New battery cables (150k)
  • New starter (190k)
  • LED headlights/fog lights (215k)


  • Flowmaster Super 44 muffler (150k)
  • Flowmaster high flow catalytic converter (215k)


  • Alignment (215k)
  • Zone 4” lift with ¾” spaces up front to level ride height – (215k)
  • Rough Country heavy duty steering stabilizer – (215k)
  • Rough Country front sway bar disconnects (215k)
  • Addco rear sway bar (150k)
  • Moog greasable tie rod ends (215k)
  • Coil spring couplers (150k)

Wheels and Tires

  • 17” Jeep Wrangler JK Moab (215k)
  • 32” BFG KM3(215k)
  • Lug Nuts (actually for Mustangs) (215k)
  • Full size spare included (215k)

Maintenance Completed Recently

  • K&N Filter (recharged at 215k)
  • Water pump/clutch fan/serpentine belt (220k)
  • Steering, suspension, and driveline components lubricated (220K)
  • NGK spark plugs (220k)

Other items replaced within the last 6-8 years

  • AC Accumulator/ AC Lines
  • *AC needs to be recharged once a year (completed for this year)
  • Dual Climate Blend Doors
  • Heater Core
  • Hood/window gas struts
  • Tweeter speakers by windshield
  • radiator, thermostat, hoses, and coolant
Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.