Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Jeep has a roof rack to carry your stuff, but only two-wheel drive to get it where it needs to go. Could that inequity demand a more equitable price?
I sometimes think about the mantra that people should “live fast, die young, and leave a good-lookin’ corpse.” I believe I first heard it espoused by Fonzie on a rerun of Happy Days. Over the years that has evolved into “YOLO” or You Only Live Once. That’s a motto that has long been a rule of thumb for defunct auto brands, and in the few times that an attempt was made to resurrect a dead nameplate, the results have not been wholly successful.
One of the more recent brands to go belly up was Saturn, which died in 2010. More than a few of you rued its passing, especially with cars like the 2005 Saturn Vue Red Line we looked at yesterday still around to remind us of what we are missing. That hot Vue crossover featured a Honda driveline and, despite a few aftermarket miscues, a generally well-accepted appearance. At just $4,950, it was apparently a good deal, too, as it took home a narrow but unassailable 56 percent Nice Price win.
You know, there’s another old saying that still gets batted around from time to time. That one is “close enough for government work,” which means accomplishing something to a degree that’s acceptable but not spot-on. The obvious retort to that has always been that “close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades,” but we’re going to ignore that today.
Close is exactly what many may consider of this 2001 Jeep Cherokee Sport. That’s because this Jeep features two-wheel-drive rather than the expected four-wheel-drive. For some, that’s sort of like going to The Cheesecake Factory and ordering off the Skinnylicious menu.
Not everybody needs four-wheel drive in their boxy utility wagon, a point proved by this Jeep’s mere existence. For you fair-weather friends, this Cherokee’s better fuel economy and lower complexity may hold a lot of appeal. Let’s see what else there is to like here.
The Jeep is painted in taxi cab yellow, and that, along with a prominent roof rack, means you’ll likely never have a problem spotting it in a crowded parking lot. The paint looks to be in decent shape with only a few boogers here and there to mar the aesthetic experience. It’s actually not at all bad for a car that has over 200,000 miles under its tires.
The dark gray interior presents in equally decent fashion but does have a new headliner which, inexplicably, is colored pistachio green. Under the hood lies Jeep’s stalwart and rock-simple 4.0-liter OHV straight-six. That’s paired with a four-speed automatic and the aforementioned RWD chassis.
According to the ad, the car has a new radiator and decent tread on its tires. There are no warning lights on the dash suggesting impending doom, either. Other yin and yang include a new windscreen and a non-working radio. The title is clean and the seller describes the Jeep as “Beautiful.”
The last line in the ad notes that the Cherokee is being “Sold As Is.” Now, that’s either a way to head off whiny and needy buyers who see a used-car purchase as a way to strike up an ongoing dialog with the prior owner, or it’s a veiled warning of some undisclosed issue. That could be the case since the seller also instructs potential buyers to “examine pictures thoroughly” and to “ask questions.”
The only question I have is whether this 2WD Jeep is worth its $3,800 asking price as it sits. What do you think, could this high-mileage Cherokee still pull that kind of cash? Or are there too many red flags to ask that much green?
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