I have asked Jeep Canada for clarity. If this is the case then I was sold a pile of crap as that was the first question I asked and asked it a few more times when buying it. Even the parts guy is saying it. The whole point is to tow. Appreciate your responses but I am looking to Jeep Canada for their say and will post it when I get it. If its 2000 lbs and they sold me a lie, I am thinking they need to own that and make amends.
As was quoted previously the owners manual is the law for FCA regardless on what the dealer says. The warranty is the big issue and violating the terms in the manual put that towing situation in grave jeopardy.
With that said you can tow whatever you want or the dealer says is OK. Its your Cherokee. But any damage may not be covered.
What the dealer is not considering is the added equipment that is added in the tow package. Extra cooling and axle ratio at your weight limit is critical. Both can be added at an extra expense.
Axle ratio might be a bit of an issue though. If its in the front wheel drive set up its a lost cause.
If you proceed I would cover a few issues first:
* I would only have the dealer install the OEM tow set up with wiring. You will need the trailer brakes for sure. When finished it will look exactly like and function like it came from the factory.
* Extra transmission cooling is a must. It must be added if it is not already there from another package on your Cherokee. If the dealer can not do that, an outside supplier can.
Yes, the V6 Cherokee will tow the limit but as mentioned previously it must be safe and protect the mechanical parts. Neither of which is the case with a non OEM set up.
The hitch is key to that when at or near the max. The OEM hitch including the bolts that hold it to the frame are warrantied to the limit.
Now the other question about Boats and ramps.
4WD is a definite plus in most situations. Ramps are always wet thus slippery. Ramps that have algae and sea weed on them can be treacherous.
Ramps that are concrete can be grooved which help traction. If not they can be treacherous with the right conditions.
Ramp slope is another issue. The steeper the slope the more problematic they can be.
Backing down with a 4500lb boat is done very, very, very, slowly. Try several stops while backing down to see how much slide you will get.
Conditions on the ramp will determine how much slide you will get. I have seem vehicles partially pulled into the water because its backed in to fast.
Once the boat comes off the trailer it eases the pull on the vehicle.
Pulling out in 4WD is usually not an issue unless there is algae etc. on the ramp. In your case 4500lbs would be a load to pull out of the water.
Actually pulling out of the water multiplies the weight and stress on the drive train. The steeper the slope the more weight and stress.
I can spin my tires briefly if the ramp conditions are bad on the initial pull out of the water and that is with 1700lbs. You have 4500 lbs.
But yes the Cherokee can handle it as good as my previous V8 Grand Cherokee did. I am sure yours will also.
Yes, the dealer also told me that they can add the trailer hitch but from the previous 3 jeeps I have owned I knew that would not work so I factory ordered it to get it.
Dealers will say anything but most of this is not understanding the product they are selling.
In your case I might actually look for a 4WD truck or a factory OEM Cherokee tow set up. The problem is once you get a boat you will not confine yourself to that one close lake.
I have been as far as 500 miles to lakes and its nice to know I am covered by my tow capacity 100% of the time.
Just remember the old adage: The two best days in a boaters life are the purchase date and the date its sold.