PeteBís Comprehensive Review of the 2014 Cherokee Limited - Page 16 - 2014+ Jeep Cherokee Forums
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post #151 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-25-2015, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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Cool HUD in the Cherokee

So, I finally installed and tested the HUD (Head-Up Display) in the Cherokee. First of all here is the final result - below is what the head up display looks like, installed. The display is clear and shows data in multicolor. It is also reasonably customizable. The second photo shows it when driving at night (apologies for the less than stellar photo quality there).

The display can include speed, RPM, fuel consumption, coolant temperature, battery voltage, trip indicator and various error codes‎. There is also a high speed limit warning, shift indicator and an audible buzzer.

The whole venture cost me less than $ 50, and it was a simple plug and play installation. I will detail the installation and some impressions, and comment on the pros and cons of the HUD in another post.
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post #152 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-25-2015, 09:02 PM
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Do you find any distraction from either the HUD on the windscreen or the sender on top of the dash?

In the pics the top of the dash part looks quite bright.
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post #153 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-25-2015, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David_Baker View Post
Do you find any distraction from either the HUD on the windscreen or the sender on top of the dash?

In the pics the top of the dash part looks quite bright.
Not really - the HUD is angled slightly (towards the ventilation opening on the dash), and you do not see the reflection from the dash. The photos above don't do it justice - have a look at this one.

You can also adjust the brightness on the HUD manually, if the screen reflection is too much or you can just leave only the speed (the white numbers) on display!
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post #154 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-26-2015, 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteB View Post
Not really - the HUD is angled slightly (towards the ventilation opening on the dash), and you do not see the reflection from the dash. The photos above don't do it justice - have a look at this one.

You can also adjust the brightness on the HUD manually, if the screen reflection is too much or you can just leave only the speed (the white numbers) on display!
Looks good, Pete. About what I expected. I do this with my cell and a driving app in my Wrangler at night all the time with similar results. Thanks for posting. Let us know how you like it long term.
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post #155 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-26-2015, 12:25 AM
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I've got a Garmin that I use for all of the pertinent data. Just use the cell for speed and exits with Google maps.

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post #156 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-26-2015, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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Post HUD Installation

I chose a HUD that plugged into the OBDII port and was fed information directly from the Cherokee‎ (there are also those models that use GPS input).

There are many HUD options available but this one (known simply as the A8 model -photos below) offered a multicolored display, different configuration options, a US/metric unit option and frankly I just liked the way it displayed the information. The $ 42 price tag didn't hurt either (the factory installed HUD, when available, is a $ 1,200 - 1,500 option).

The unit comes with an OBDII to mini USB cable, a non slip pad (to hold it on the dash), a projection screen, that attaches to the windshield (optional but highly recommended), and a manual in 'Chinese-English, which is essential but only partially useful.‎

The basic installation could‎ not be simpler - plug the OBDII connector into the Cherokee port (just below the driver's left knee), run the wire behind the dash (you can push it in gently with a credit card); then just position the unit on the dashboard and turn on the ignition.‎ The unit is powered from the OBDII and switches on and off with the car.

While you can project directly onto the windshield, in order to avoid the double image, caused by the laminated glass (photo below), you need ‎to install the screen (similar to a cell phone screen), taking care to do it without creating bubbles underneath (you will need a spray bottle, paper towels and a squigee). The view is much better after that.

The unit itself is very configurable and low-maintenance. It switches itself on and off automatically, with the ignition‎. It has an integrated lighting sensor and adjusts the brightness, depending on time of day (you can also override that manually).

It comes with a metric default (km/degrees C, etc.), which you have to change, through a system of 17 different input screens (sounds complicated but it is easy to change, once you get the hang of it). You can also program some parameters not to display and, above 50 MPH, it switches to a highway mode by default, where only the speed is displayed (you can override that).

The display includes speed, RPM, fuel consumption (for some reason only in metric), coolant temperature, battery voltage, trip indicator and various error codes‎. There is also a high speed limit warning, shift indicator and an audible buzzer, all of which can be configured.

Even though the unit gets input directly from the OBDII it requires initial calibration for the speed, RPM and fuel consumption. Once I had that done, the readings on the HUD correspond almost exactly to the Cherokee dash display.

I found the fuel consumption extremely distracting (it's instantaneous fuel consumption so it varies wildly) so I switched it off. The main portion of the HUD displays speed and rpms while I also have a trip odometer on. Coolant temperature and voltage can also be displayed.

More about my HUD impressions in the next post.‎

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post #157 of 159 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation A8 HUD Review

Here, after a few days playing with it is the A8 HUD Review‎.

W‎hat is it: HUD, or Head up display, projects data from the car (such as speed, RPM, fuel consumption, etc.) onto the windscreen in front of your line of vision.



What are the benefits: improved visibility while driving (digital projection of car speed and other key data), increased safety (you don\'t have to take your eyes of the road to see driving info).

What are the downsides:
possible driver distraction and potential information overload.

Pros of the A8 HUD:
- easy set up and installation (plug and play)
- system accesses the car directly‎ for info
- multicolor display with clear info
- ‎HUD highly customizable
- very low price ($ 42)

Cons of the A8 HUD:
- requires pesky projection screen to be attached to the windshield
- ‎fuel consumption only in metric and pretty useless
- wish it could access and display the c‎urrent gear on the Cherokee

Detailed Review:
The A8 is a reasonably compact projection device that accesses info directly from the OBDII port in the Cherokee and projects it in the driver's line of vision. It has a sensor and automatically adjusts the brightness, depending on the outside lighting. It gets its power through the OBDII port and automatically turns on or off with the ignition. *It has a very nice multicolored interface and is reasonably customizable. On the Cherokee, this is a pure plug and play device, easy enough even for a technical doofus like me to use! The Chinese - English manual, on the other hand, requires some serious study to comprehend.



You can project only the speed or a number of other parameters, including coolant temperature, battery voltage, fuel consumption, RPMs and a trip odometer. The latter is automatically reset after each start, so it does not correspond to any Cherokee odometer (while my 2014 didn't have start-stop, I wonder if this would reset every time with the ESS). You can put either the speed (default) or the numeric RPMs (for the racers among us) as the main image.

The image from the unit sitting on the dash is projected onto a special screen on the windshield. While the HUD takes some getting used to, once you are comfortable, it does feel natural to use it. If anything, the projection screen was a PITA, more than the image itself. The display is reasonably clear during the day while at night it looks positively sci-fi-ish. During bright sunlight it may get washed out and be difficult to see. I did configure it to have less data so that I could focus only on the important stuff! There is a slight reflection from the unit itself at times (similar to the reflection of the vent grille on the dash), but I didn't find that a major distraction.





In addition the A8 has some interesting features, such as buzzer warnings for both high speed and high rpms (both customizable). The former is similar to the Uconnect feature and the latter is meant as a shift indicator, on manual shifting (limited use on the Cherokee). There are also a bunch of error code lights and a cute "get a rest" indicator, which turns on after a certain time travelled.

Compared to the factory built HUD (specifically BMWs), I liked the larger projection size (5.5" compared to 2-3") and the multicolor display, but I missed the integration of navigation and other multimedia features, which this unit cannot do. Obviously, the factory HUDs have special windshields which make much better projection surfaces. I also wish it could project current gear and a FWD/AWD indicator, but alas none of that !

Overall, once you get used to it, the A8 HUD fits in neatly with the driver's line of vision. For some though, this concept may be just too much or present information overload! For those who use it, the HUD, properly positioned and calibrated, will definitely improve both driving vision and enhance safety (no need to look down while driving). And, at $ 42 it is a sweet buy compared to the factory installed ones!


Final Verdict:
So, what do I think of having the A8 aftermarket HUD in the Cherokee? Very simply I like it a lot. For the miniscule price and the extremely simple installation, I think that it is a wonderful addition to driving comfort and safety. It can\'t compete with factory installed HUDs, but those cost 30 times more, and Jeep does not even offer that option (hint, hint for the 2017 refresh! )! I am still getting used to the additional projection screen but that is the price to pay unfortunately f‎or an affordable aftermarket HUD‎*!

If ‎you are not distracted by the windshield image, if you can see the benefits of having that car info, in front of you, and if you can overlook the addition of the projection screen, get it!‎ It is well worth it and will make your highway drives easier.

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post #158 of 159 (permalink) Old 03-27-2016, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Wink 20,000 Miles and Still Happy!

I haven't been around a lot because of business an travel, but I am happy to report that I am now past 20,000 Miles (actually 21,560) and still very happy with the performance of the Cherokee.

After 2 years it has definitely been a great vehicle and (knock on wood) I have had no problems, other than a small one I created myself (see below).

Th Cherokee still drives great, the design is even more pleasing, as a number of carmaker are actually following that trend, the comfort and technology of the fully loaded Limited is on par with my previous luxury rides and I still very much enjoy driving it.

As many of you know, I have had no transmission issues and continue to do so. The only small issue was caused by the installation of the Mopar shark fin. While it initially worked well, I had intermittent problems with the satellite reception, so much so that I changed it to the one from Visual Garage (you can see the photos below). Since then, everything has been great.

Original and Mopar Antenna

And the Visualgarage one:



I hope this thread has helped some interested people and will try to update it, and continue to check in, whenever I can.
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post #159 of 159 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up 33 K Quick Review

I have been absent from the forum, for a while, but I thought I would drop by and update the state of my 2014 Limited. After 33,333 very enjoyable Miles , it is still going strong.



The exterior still looks good to me (although it is by no means as unique any more); the interior is still very posh and comfortable (still think that the Iceland color combo was a winner that Jeep prematurely killed ); the car is quiet and technologically advanced as it was a few years ago (although now there are other vehicles, whose options can give the Cherokee a run for its money); the technology group still puts a smile on my face and has saved me from accidents numerous times now; nowadays I literally drive on ACC for over 95% of the time.

The long trips are very pleasant and I have even managed to engage some of the ADI four wheel modes on sand and in the mud and get some underbody scratches (which is an achievement for me ).



To be fair, during the last 18 months, I also had several minor issues come up:

1. The battery suddenly failed 6 months ago - replaced under warranty
2. LED vanity bulbs were shortcircuiting (probably explains the battery ) - complete vanities/sunvisors replaced under warranty plus had to go back from LED to incadescent bulbs, just to be safe
3. The gear shift button broke off (a well documented problem here ) - replaced under warranty

Other than that, the Cherokee has been flawless and is still going strong.



I was planning to replace the car in the next few months (I have never held on to a vehicle this long, and already had a few non-Jeep candidates in mind), but I will probably wait and see what the newly redesigned 2018 Cherokee model looks like.

Hope everyone is enjoying their Cherokees and that this thread was useful for many of you!
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