2021 Jeep Cherokee vs. 2021 Ford Bronco SportIf you’re looking for a small yet rugged crossover that’s capable of getting you “out and about,” you’ve no doubt put Jeep at the top of your list. With the new 2021 Cherokee, you’ll get that very type of SUV, one in which you can explore till your phone’s camera runs out of space.

But there’s a new kid on the block that is giving the Cherokee a run for its money: The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport. It has a lot of the pedigree of the Bronco, just with a smaller footprint, which might entice some Jeep drivers over to the other side. But does the new Ford SUV deserve it?

Let’s compare the new 2021 Jeep Cherokee and 2021 Ford Bronco Sport to see which of these compact SUVs is better built for the outdoors.

Reliability

2021 Jeep Cherokee Jeep WaveThe Most Valuable Customer Care Program in America, Jeep Wave, comes packaged with every single new Jeep Cherokee (or any Jeep, for that matter). Jeep Wave supplies worry-free maintenance and 24/7 support for 36 months post-purchase or post-lease.

Jeep Cherokee has an overall reliability score of 85/100, per U.S. News and J.D. Power. The Bronco Sport has yet to be rated, though it’s unlikely to match Jeep's level of reliability. In fact, there have been recent reports that some Bronco Sports have overheated when tackling steep inclines—sounds like a recall issue may be in order.

Winner: Jeep Cherokee. The Jeep Wave program alone is worth the purchase or lease of a Cherokee, and Jeep’s better overall reliability ratings make the decision only easier.

Engine

Bronco Sport has two engines: its base engine, a 1.5L EcoBoost, makes 181 horsepower and 190 lb-ft of torque, and its available 2.0L EcoBoost engine makes 250 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque. Ford Bronco Sport boasts “best-in-class" horsepower and torque, but that’s a bit of a fib as the new Jeep Cherokee powers through with an optional 2.0L Turbo engine that makes 270 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque.

Jeep Cherokee has a total of three engines from which to choose, including the available 2.0L Turbo, a base 2.4L that makes 180 horsepower and 171 lb-ft of torque, and an optional 3.2L Pentastar V6 that makes 271 hp and 239 lb-ft of torque.  

2021 Cherokee

HP / Torque

HP / Torque

2021 Bronco Sport

2.4L Tigershark® Multiair® 2

180 / 171 lb-ft

181 / 190 lb-ft

1.5L EcoBoost®

2.0L Turbo

270 / 295 lb-ft

250 / 277 lb-ft

2.0L EcoBoost®

3.2L Pentastar® V6 ENGINE

271 / 239 lb-ft

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-

Winner: Jeep Cherokee. Not only are its engines stronger, but if our math is correct, you also get more choices. 

Towing

2021 Jeep Cherokee Towing BoatEquipped with an optional 3.2L Pentastar VG, the 2021 Jeep Cherokee offers a best-in-class maximum towing of 4,500 pounds. Cherokees with the optional 2.0L Turbo engine can tow up to 4,000 pounds. The standard 2.4L engine gives the Cherokee a 2,000-pound towing limit.

Ford Bronco Sports, even with standard 4x4 and the model’s most powerful engine (2.0L), can only muster the strength to tow up to 2,200 pounds (Bronco Sport Badlands model). All other Bronco Sports can tow a pedestrian 2,000 lbs.

What about Ford Bronco Sport and Jeep Cherokee payload specs? Both rugged SUVs have max payload of approximately 1,000 pounds.

2021 Cherokee (4x4)

Max Towing

Max Towing

2021 Bronco Sport

2.4L Tigershark® Multiair® 2

2,000 lbs

2,000 lbs

1.5L EcoBoost®

2.0L Turbo

4,000 lbs

2,200 lbs

2.0L EcoBoost®

3.2L Pentastar® V6 ENGINE

4,500 lbs

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-

Winner: Jeep Cherokee. If you need to tow a lot, the upper trims of 2021 Cherokee beat those of the Bronco Sport, no questions asked.

Fuel Economy

Because the Ford Bronco Sport is exclusively a 4x4 SUV, its fuel economy isn’t anything to write home about. Bronco Sport Base trims return 25 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, while the upper trims with the 2.0L engine return just 21 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway.

New 4x2 Jeep Cherokee SUVs do significantly better on the highway. Standard Cherokees with the base 2.4L Tigershark engine return 22 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. Those numbers slightly improve (23 city/31 highway) with the 2.0L Turbo, and dip to 20 city/29 highway with the upper-range 3.2L engine.

2021 Cherokee (4x2)

MPG (city/hwy)

MPG (city/hwy)

2021 Bronco Sport

2.4L Tigershark® Multiair® 2

22/31

25/28

1.5L EcoBoost®

2.0L Turbo

23/31

21/26

2.0L EcoBoost®

3.2L Pentastar® V6 ENGINE

20/29

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-

Winner: Tie. In city driving, the miniature Ford Bronco does slightly better on gas. On highways, the Cherokee takes the cake. Combined mpg is similar.

Passenger Space

In all, the Jeep Cherokee offers 22.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Ford Bronco Sport (128 vs 105.7 cu ft). That’s a whole lot of extra room for activities.

To make matters worse for the Ford SUV, it lags the new Cherokee in rear legroom by a lot: 40.3 inches vs. 36.9 inches, to be exact. All other interior specs are comparable, for the most part.

 

2021 Cherokee

2021 Bronco Sport

Passenger Volume

128 cu ft

105.7 cu ft

Rear Legroom

40.3 in

36.9 in

Winner: Jeep Cherokee. Both SUVs seat five, but the Cherokee does so more effortlessly thanks to its 128-cubic-foot cabin.

Price

2021 Jeep Cherokee in Birmingham, ALThe price differences between the Ford Bronco Sport and Jeep Cherokee for sale near Hoover are negligible.

You can find the new 2021 Jeep Cherokee for sale with a starting price of $27,005 (Cherokee Latitude FWD) or up to $38,935 (Cherokee High Altitude 4x4).

The Ford Bronco Sport 4x4 starts at $26,820, and the Bronco Sport First Edition 4x4 climbs to $38,500.

Winner: Tie. There’s only a $200-$500 difference between all Bronco Sport and Cherokee trims. But for overall value, based on capability and versatility, the new Jeep SUV is probably a better buy.

Shop Jeep Cherokee in Birmingham

There you have it. Thanks to its brand’s pedigree, engine options, and towing capability, the new Jeep Cherokee makes for a smarter buy over the new Ford Bronco Sport.

Find a great Jeep Cherokee deal in Birmingham by contacting Jim Burke CDJR at (205) 502-2772. Our Birmingham Jeep dealership is located at 1409 5th Avenue North, and we’re ready to get you behind the wheel today!

Categories: New Inventory