If you’re an outdoors person wondering what your new Jeep Cherokee can do aside from off-roading, you might consider water activities. There are boats that your Cherokee could handle with its towing capacity.
The Jeep Cherokee is an SUV that has been Jeep’s most successful vehicle for good reason. The Cherokee, originally sold as an alternative to the Jeep Wagoneer, has been well known for its use in many different off-roading activities.
How Much Weight Can a Jeep Cherokee Tow?
If you plan to tow anything with your Jeep Cherokee, you should first find out the factory weight limit.
The answer to this question is different for every situation. The new Jeep Cherokee is available with several different engines. Each engine is suited to different needs.
2.4-Liter Four-Cylinder Tigershark
This engine option comes with 180 horsepower and 171 pound-feet of torque. It is a good option for your daily needs. It has a rather low towing capacity of 2,000 pounds. This is only if it is prepared with the proper equipment. The transmission is an automatic nine-speed.
2.0-Liter Turbocharged Four-Cylinder
270 horsepower is produced by this engine, along with 295 pound-feet of torque, with an automatic nine-speed transmission. With the higher torque, this option would allow you to tow up to 4,000 pounds. This is a newer engine option.
If you’re looking for an even higher towing capacity, the 3.2-liter V-6 is for you. With 271 horsepower and 239 pound-feet of torque, this engine has a towing capacity of 4,500 pounds when fitted with the trailer tow package. The same automatic nine-speed transmission is used.
Jeep Cherokee Trim Levels
There are a few different Jeep Cherokee trim levels, so the type of engine depends on which model you buy. Here are some examples.
Jeep Cherokee Latitude
This model normally comes from the factory with the four-cylinder engine and 180 horsepower, giving it a 2,000-pound towing capacity. However, you can add the V-6 engine to up its limit to 4,500 pounds if you need to. Four-wheel drive can also be added, which can help tow a boat.
Jeep Cherokee Latitude Plus
This trim level comes with the same engine as the Latitude, but you have the option to add four-wheel drive, the V6 engine, or the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. So depending on which engine option you choose, your towing capacity with this model could range from 2,000 pounds to 4,500 pounds.
Jeep Cherokee Limited
This model comes with all the engine options and four-wheel drive. So, with the Limited, your weight limit would also be in the range of 2,000 to 4,500 pounds.
Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk
The same 2,000 to 4,500-pound towing capacity applies to the Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk model, as all three engine options are available. The Trailhawk is fitted with great off-road features, so if you need to tow a boat in less than optimal terrain, it could be a good fit.
Jeep Cherokee Overland
Unlike the Trailhawk, the Overland doesn’t have as many off-road features. The V6 engine does give it a towing capacity of 4,500 pounds, but a turbocharged four-cylinder engine is also an option if you only want a 4,000-pound limit.
The towing limit mustn’t be exceeded. So be sure to check the capacity of your model before towing a boat. If your model doesn’t have the limit you need, consider upgrading your engine to suit your towing purposes.
It is always wise to try to stay under the weight limit. Don’t forget to consider the weight of the boat trailer, as well. A boat trailer can weigh as much as 2,000 pounds. Add the weight of your boat and trailer together to make sure it within the limits advised.
This may be discouraging if you were looking forward to towing a large boat, but don’t lose heart. There are plenty of options that are suited to all different kinds of water activities. Read on to see which boats can be towed behind a Jeep Cherokee.
5 Types of Boats You Can Tow With A Jeep Cherokee
Although there is a limit to what your Cherokee can tow, your options are many when it comes to which boats fit within those limits. Take a look at this table to get an overview of some of your options.
|Type of Boat||Average Dry Weight|
|Center Console||5,000 pounds|
|Fishing Boat||3,500 pounds|
|Ski Boat||3,500 pounds|
|Cuddy Cabin||3,750 pounds|
Don’t be alarmed if the average weight is over the limit. Don’t forget this is just an average estimate. There will be specific options within these types that will be perfect for your Jeep Cherokee’s towing capacity.
Even though these options fall within the factory range of towing capacity, you should still take into consideration that each boat will be different, and you will have to factor in the weight of the trailer.
Bonus Boat Weight Information:
- How much does a 17-foot boat weigh?
- How much does a 19-foot boat weigh?
- How much does a 21-foot boat weigh?
Center Console boats are most often used for fishing. They often have a deck area that is great for standing to cast off and reel in.
The average center console boat weighs 5,000 pounds, but a few options in this category are suited for towing behind your Cherokee.
- 2019 Boston Whaler 150 Montauk – 1,049 pounds
- 2020 Bayliner Element F21 – 2,000 pounds
- 2019 Boston Whaler 170 Dauntless – 1,680 pounds
If you’re a fisherman looking to tow a fishing boat behind your Jeep Cherokee, you will have lots of options to choose from. There are several fishing boats, commonly called bass boats, that fall within the weight ranges you are looking for.
- Tracker Pro 2017 170 – 878 pounds
- 2019 Boston Whaler 110 Tender – 425 pounds
- Tracker Pro Team 2017 175 TF – 1,010 pounds
- Charger Elite 210 – 1,900 pounds
- 2020 Campion EX16 OB CC – 2,800 pounds
- Bass Cat Jaguar – 2,150 pounds
Water recreation is another common reason to own a boat. Ski boats are used most often for water tubing and skiing and allow you to enjoy your time with family and friends on the water. If this is the kind of boat you’re looking to tow behind your Jeep Cherokee, here are a few options for you.
- Tige 2017 RZR 20 – 3,100 pounds
- 2020 Campion WS 18 – 2,685 pounds
- Boston Whaler 170 Montauk – 1,700 to 2,254 pounds
- Mastercraft Prostar 2017 20 – 3,000 pounds
If you’re looking to get out on the water for a day of fun and relaxation, or maybe even an overnight trip, a cuddy cabin boat can give you that. Cuddy cabin boats are made for getting out on the water to swim, open-water cruising, and lounging. There are even options for porta-potties, a shower, and a sink for comfort and convenience.
- 2016 Bayliner 642 Overnighter – 3,084 pounds
- 2013 Beneteau Flyer 650 Cabrio – 3,329
- 2015 Regal 2250 Cuddie – 3,900
If you’re looking for a casual time on the water with family and friends, your Jeep may be able to handle one of these.
A bowrider boat gets its name from the area in the bow, or front, that has seats. Normally, bowriders are used for recreational activities like water skiing or day cruising, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it for something like fishing if that is more to your liking. They normally have a seating capacity of four to 10 people.
On average, bowriders weigh around 4,500 pounds. With the trailer, this would put it over the recommended towing capacity. But there are bowriders that weight much less than average, which would allow you to consider one as a good option for towing behind your Jeep Cherokee.
Some good options of bowriders that would fit within the Jeep Cherokee towing limit include:
- 2020 Bayliner 160 OB
- 2020 Bayliner VR4 Bowrider
- 2018 Bayliner Element E16
A Few Things You May Want to Know
In addition to knowing how much weight you can tow with your Jeep Cherokee, there are some other things you may want to consider.
While your Jeep may be able to tow some of these boats when it comes to weight, you will also want to consider trailer length. Towing something that is too long could be dangerous and difficult.
Before you tow your boat, you should be sure that you are fitted with the proper towing equipment. It is extremely important to make sure your hitch receiver is rated for towing. Most Jeep Cherokees come with a Class III hitch receiver and 4 and 7-pin wiring harnesses. For most boats, you will need a Class II or Class III hitch receiver, so you should be set with that.
Other cutting-edge safety features are offered for your Jeep Cherokee. They may not be specific to towing a boat, but they can assist you to do it safely. Rear cross-path detection and Blind-spot Monitors let you know what is going on in places you may not be able to see well.
If you own a Jeep Cherokee, chances are you love being outdoors. So, if you’re looking to expand your outdoor experience with water activities, you can rest assured that there are boat options for you that fit well within the towing capacity. Use this guide to help you choose the best boat for your needs.