So, the wife and I are working on putting a bun in the oven. With the two of us, a baby (or two) two dogs, and West Michigan winters, I think I want to get rid of my Jetta. We've been talking about a used Grand Cherokee (2009-2013) because of their typically robust construction, 4x4 system, size and pricing on the used car market (sub-$20k for lower mile examples).

My wife and I have both owned Jeeps in the past (pre-2000) and loved them, but I am not as familiar with the newer mechanicals.

Anybody have any ideas of what to look out for or common mechanical issues that need to be addressed in used Grand Cherokees?

Also, if others have suggestions for alternative vehicles, I am all ears. We have also considered the Subie Outback/Forester and Honda Pilot. Reqs: room for 5 comfortably, 4x4 or AWD, low maintenance costs, and longevity.

What can you tell me OPPO-nauts?