2014+ Jeep Grand Cherokee WK2 EcoDiesel FAQ

Posted: May 20, 2014 in Being Green, Green Technology

Note: This FAQ can be updated by readers if you email me information (I’ll try to verify and post the info in a timely fashion). You can also reach me on Jeep Garage forum member jaje.

Jeep used to have a diesel Grand Cherokee (WK) which they sold from 2007 – 2008.5 but Chrysler’s financial woes and a new Tier 2 Bin 5 EPA emission requirement starting in 2009 put the diesel option back on the bench. This however did nothing to curb the following the WK CRD had (including me). So in Fall 2013 Jeep once again began shipping another diesel powered Grand Cherokee to US and CDN consumers. Most importantly US and CDN consumers now have a much cheaper mid-size SUV alternative than having only to rely on the Germans. So for ~ $40k MSRP (2wd limited without options) you get an SUV that can do the following:

– tow up to 7,400 lbs (2wd), 7,200 lbs (4wd)

– actually make it easy to park in garages or parking lots without needing 3+ point turns (and also having a small turning radius)

– get high 20’s / low 30’s real world MPG (EPA is done in a lab on a roller so gas engine EPA #s are overly optimistic)

Shell Track to Track Challenge where a Hypermiler drove 1,100 miles from Autobahn (which is right next to Chicagoland Speedway) in Joliet, IL to COTA in Austin, TX and was able to get 44.4 mpg!!!

– Bladder bursting range of up to 800 mile from a 24.6 gallon tank (6 more than the WK CRD)

– 10k Maintenance intervals for oil and DEF

– Maintenance required is only oil changes and serpentine belt (no spark plugs or timing belts to be replaced).

– Real 4×4 capability if you option up to the Quadra Drive II option with Off Road Adventure package

– Full air suspension (rear with trailer package and full with Off Road II or Overland or higher models)

– And all this cost $5-$10k cheaper than the next comparable diesels on the market ML350 BlueTec and X35d.

Emissions Equipment

Diesel Emission Fluid  (DEF): DEF is an reactant (mainly a nitrogen compound that turns into ammonia when heated) that is added downstream (injected into a mist by the DEF injector) to the SCR (selective catalyst reduction) part of the exhaust system where the fluid reacts with NOx compounds to create nitrogen and oxygen. In fact the exhaust from a modern diesel is cleaner and emits less CO2 than gas engines of same power (especially where gas engines have direct injection as their NOx emissions are higher than a non-direct injection engine). DEF is only required on US and Canadian models where our emissions standards are more strict.

If your fluid level is low you may get a Low DEF Fluid Code: P203F. You can check the fluid level on the information part of your screen (same screen that shows oil life and battery voltage). You can fill it up at a service station (some large truck stops have DEF next to diesel); get it from the dealer (they sell 2.5 gallon) for $20 (they can change it for you). DEF fluid you put in should be new (it has a shelf life) and of high quality with API certification to ISO 22241-1 standards. Reason why is that it is a solution and the Jeeps system can tell if it’s old fluid or not of this standard (solution is 32.5% urea and rest water). It has to be at this ratio for maximum effectiveness and lowest freeze point (-11 degrees C). For much more information on DEF see this link.

Does DEF Expire?: YES as it has a useful life and then degrades quicker the warmer the climate it is stored in.

Temperature – Estimated Useful Life
32°F (0°C) – Indefinite
50°F (10°C) – 75 Years
68°F (20°C) – 11 Years
86°F (30°C) – 23 Months
95°F (35°C) – 10 Months
104°F (40°C) – 4 Month
122°F (50°C) – 1 Month
140°F (60°C) – 1 Week
Possible ETC codes you can expect if DEF is about to expire:
  • PosP20EE – SCR NOx Catalyst Efficiency Below Threshold (this could be from summer heat causing DEF fluid to degrade quickly – even within 1 weeks time).
  • P2BA9 – NOx Exceedence – Insufficient Reagent Quality
  • EVIC “Incorrect DEF detected – See dealer.”
Ways you can work around this issue: Do not fill up the tank to the full 8 gallons. Instead only fill up to 5 gallons but keep a 2.5 gallon supply in a cool dry place – like a basement floor where the cement will keep the DEF fluid cool and last a long time. Then when you are getting down to 25% put in 2.5 gallons to fill back up to ~ 50% (do not put in more). Check the date on the bottle (don’t use old DEF). And honestly I don’t trust the DEF from the truck stops as well – I buy it from the dealer and check the date on the bottle. They charge more than Walmart but I trust the dealer more. Ask for wholesale price from the parts counter as you will be buying it more frequently (buy a couple jugs at a time). Please also note the refiller nozzle on them is very cheap and easy to spill if not tight. If you get these codes others have successfully added new DEF in the tank and it slowly mixed with the old fluid and went back to normal. The tank is located deep in the Jeep and hard to find – you cannot siphon it out of the fill cap. Might be a good idea for someone to make a screw in drain for the tank so we can drain it and add new fluid.
Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF): Like all 2005 and newer diesels they likely came with a DPF – which is essentially another catalytic converter that collects soot from the exhaust gasses then when the ECU senses high pressure it will start a regeneration cycle where the engine will allow hotter exhaust gas and squirt fuel down stream which then collects in the DPF and burns to over 1,200 degrees (F) to burn the soot to ash. There is a weird smell when this happens and it normally happens on drives at highway speeds but does it sometimes during short commutes. It will restart the process if you shut it down. Because is has a DPF you are required to run 229.51 or

Known Issues

Oil Life Monitor – Rapid Deterioration: The WK2 tracks oil life based on usage and expected oil change intervals for normal use is 10k miles. However certain WK2s had an software error that caused issues and forced owners to change oil by up to 1-3k miles.  The TSB is for all 3.0 diesels built on or before 5 April 2014. This should not affect any built after 4/5/14. Link to TSB explaining condition and update that is needed.

DEF Level Upon Delivery (only new): When you pick it up from the dealer confirm they filled it as from the factory it is not full (as it has a shelf life). To do so go to the onboard menu (controls on steering wheel) and go into info and hit the right or left button to see the DEF level. Please refer to this TSB for DEF instructions on delivery that shows the dealer has to fill it up and how they get reimbursed from Jeep.

DEF Injector / Nozzle / Harness Damaged from Road Debris (you get a warning for Service DEF System – See Dealer): ROW vehicles do not have the DEF system installed (but US and Canada models do). The DEF injector and harness is located underneath the vehicle and its harness and injector are open to being damaged by rocks or even splashing water (what happened with mine when I went through a puddle). This is a known problem and hopefully Jeep will do something about this. When damaged you may see a warning that notes your vehicle will not will not start in 200 miles and will tick down the mileage and then won’t start.  In order to fix it members on JeepGarage have a group buy for a DEF injector protector / shield that you can use to protect it (that is unless Jeep realizes this is an issue and makes a fix and then backdates older models – which Jeep is in denial about saying there is no widespread issue with these). There is allegedly also a Mopar part number for a DEF skid plate that may address this issue. Here’s hoping to Jeep stops denying this problem and will fix this issue as soon as possible and reimburse those who bought the aftermarket skid plate.

March / April 2014 Models (CV Axle Boots): May have a torn CV boot from defective installation of the clamps. This applies to all 4×4 WK2s (not just EcoDiesels).

Incorrect DEF Message: Owners can fill up the DEF tanks but you must use MOPAR® Diesel Exhaust Fluid (API Certified) (DEF) or equivalent that has been API Certified to the ISO 22241 standard. Use of any other DEF may  lead to a no start condition. Also do not overfill the tank (such as fill up into the neck) as the DEF tank does not have a breather in order to vent from expansion of fluid. As DEF has a shelf life be aware if you buy it with out a date as the warmer climate the quicker it expires (see DEF Fluid under emissions).

Maintenance

Oil Changes: Normal use is 10k miles or 10,000 mi. (12 months) or 8k miles (6 months) if used with B6-B20 biodiesel). Oil must meet MS-11106 Spec or it may cause problems (dealers may do an oil analysis to confirm the correct oil was used). The following are compatible oils that are available:

  • Pennzoil Euro L 5W30 (~ $11 a quart)
  • Mobil ESP 5W30 (~ $9 a quart)

Procedure (see this link for dealer supplementary instructions):

  1. With warm engine wait 30 minutes before changing oil (takes longer to drain oil into pan). Don’t do it with a cold engine as drain time takes much longer.
  2. Remove oil drain bolt (13mm) and drain oil into pan (dispose of properly please). It will take a while to fully drain – I recommend at least 15 mins for the drain procedure.
  3. Torque drain plug to 33 ft lbs (replace crush washer if necessary or flip over 180 degrees if you reuse it). You may also think ahead and make this easier by getting the Futomotive F-106 valve for quick flip oil changes.
  4. Put shop rag around oil filter (to collect any spilled oil)
  5. Remove filter cover (27mm)
  6. Replace filter and old o-ring and replace with new filter (part #: 68109834AA) and oil new o-ring (oil the new ring so it slides into place easily).
  7. Drain oil from oil filter housing using a suction plunger (or an old turkey baster). There will be quite a bit inside.
  8. Reinstall filter cover (18 ft lbs) being careful not to damage the rubber seal.
  9. Fill engine to 8.0 quarts (7.7 liters) as you are changing the oil filter (I don’t recommend changing oil without doing filter every time – might as well do it).
  10. Wait 15 minutes after filling with oil (so oil drains into pan)

Fuel Filter: Fuel filter Mopar part # 4726067AA / do every 50k miles

Service Instructions: http://www.wk2jeeps.com/engine/2012_wk_diesel_fuel_filter.pdf

Info about the WK2 EcoDiesel

VM Motori Engine Specs:

3.0L (182 ci) – 60-degree, even-fire V-6
Bore & Stoke: 83 mm x 92 mm (3.26 in. x 3.62 in.)
Compression Ratio: 16.5:1
Block Construction: Compacted-graphite iron (CGI) casting that weighs 159 pounds, featuring four 14mm head bolts per cylinder

Bedplate: 1 piece, 35-pound assembly retains the crankshaft and ties the bottom of the block together with six 12mm bolts per main bearing
Crankshaft: Forged 4140 steel with 74mm (2.91 in.) main bearing journals and 67.5mm (2.66 in.) connecting rod journals, externally balanced
Cylinder Head: Aluminum castings with 4 valves per cylinder
Valvetrain: DOHC with roller finger followers and hydraulic lash adjustment
Valve Size: 28.5mm (1.12 in.) intake, 25.4mm (1.00 in.) exhaust

Total Engine Weight: 498 lbs
Horsepower: 221 to 268 hp at 4,000 rpm
Torque: 369 to 421 lb-ft at 2,000 rpm
Maximum RPM: 4,800 rpm
Fuel System: Bosch common-rail injection with a CP4.2 pump and CRIN 3.4 solenoid injectors capable of running up to 29,000 psi (2,000 bar) and seven injection events
Turbo: Single Electronically controlled Garrett turbo with variable vane geometry
Photos and other info at allpar

Banks Power (placeholder)

Link to DieselPower Mag Article on Banks Power Review of  Banks http://www.dieselpowermag.com/tech/1208dp_banks_vm_motori_630t_v6_diesel_engine/

Glow Plugs (placeholder)

GDE Eco / Hot Tune: Keith is at it again with marked improvements to the Ecodiesel engine – giving a much better reliability and Eco tune (with 3-5 mpg improvements!) and reduced EGR caking and other tweaks (like allowing two foot driving so you can spool the turbo for immediate power and not get an error message and no power).

GDE Tune Results – Stock – Eco – Hot

Real World Fuel Mileage: Here’s some info many people don’t know about EPA Ratings. EPA testing is done in a laboratory that means constant conditions with the intent to create even testing between comparable models (not to get actual real world mileage) and in order to account for weight and drag co-efficient they provide friction on the dyno wheel. In addition OEMs may test vehicles themselves under similar circumstances however variables such as altitude, air density, temperature affect results. Even further, OEMs are allowed to create their own EPA mileage estimate even though the vehicle was not tested if the drivetrain is used in a “similar” vehicle (this is done by an algorithm). For instance this latter part is why Ford’s C-Max Hybrid had to be derated on MPG due to real world being so far from EPA as the math didn’t work out right.

So why does this even matter to us? Well we often rely on estimates from EPA especially those looking for fuel economy in their upcoming purchase. EPA doesn’t work well here as these tests are not adequate to actual real world driving (traffic, weather, etc.)

I just did a search on Fuelly.com where people can enter real world mpg (though we are relying on strangers one could assume once you get rid of the outliers a good median is useful). So with this in mind – a 2014 WK2 4wd Ecodiesel the majority of folks are getting an average of 25-27 combined mpg, the 2014 WK2 4wd Gas v6 has a majority of 19-20 combined mpg, and the 2014 WK2 Gas Hemi v8 (non SRT) gets an average of combined 17-18 mpg.

Engine Block Heater: If you ordered the engine block heater installed from the factory ($95 option) then you can find it attached right next to the engine oil level check. It will be easily seen at the top and it’s a black plug with a cover. You may want to run a short extension cord with a cover over to the front air dam for easy plug in. I’d recommend this for any starts you need to do below 20 degrees F. If yours did not come with the factory plug don’t worry as all Ecodiesels came with an engine block heater installed and you can get a cord from (Mopar Part 68186526AB – $50) or from Geno’s Garage (same part as Ram 1500 ED – $17). The plug is down below next to the starter motor on the block. It is very hard to get to but the best way is to lay on top of the engine and feel around for the plug in for the cord and use your hands to push in the cord.

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Comments
  1. linuxd00d says:

    Did you test drive the Benz and the BMW before buying? I’m curious what that extra $5-10K gets you (other than the badge obviously).

  2. Didn’t have much time to do so and I’m sure I’d be very impressed (been in an 2013 GL 350 Bluetec). I also bought it from a buddy of mine who works at Woodhouse Auto.

  3. Phil C. says:

    Info on the VM Motori diesel and Banks can be seen here.
    http://www.dieselpowermag.com/tech/1208dp_banks_vm_motori_630t_v6_diesel_engine/

  4. Red PeeKay says:

    Interestingly, down here in Oz Jeep also release the CRD in the Laredo package which means you can access the diesel at the entry level rather than having to spec up. Even better, due to our emissions laws we don’t need to add the DEF, so this function has been omitted from our GC’s! The downside to all this is that we pay a lot more for our cars down here than you do in North America. The diesel also runs at about $5000 more than the petrol equivalent. Great blog, keep up the good work!

    • Thanks Red. You are lucky that you get a Laredo version. There is a possibility it will be offered in the base trim line here as well as our Ram work truck can be had with the diesel if you get at least the quad cab.

  5. Eric says:

    Hey there, just stumbled on this blog while researching the previous generation diesel Jeeps. GREAT info on that platform. I’m considering both a 2008 and 2014 diesel Jeep and would be curious how you would contrast them other than the obvious ($$) Thanks in advance.

    • Eric says:

      Also should have mentioned I’m former NHRA Super class racer who’s dabbled in auto x and road course DE days also. Now i’m only towing a boat for my kids and driving to my summer house but you never know what kind of trouble I can get in with the right tow vehicle!

      • I used to tow with gas powered 1/2 pickups and they were nice but the mpg was terrible – then they were also really big vehicles and I couldn’t use them easily as a daily driver even here in KS where the pickup is common place daily driver and it wouldn’t fit in my garage as it’s too long).

        Had a WRX that I sold to get the CRD (almost the same exterior dimensions) but it could tow 7,200 lbs and since it’s a diesel it got 2x better mpg than the pickup or a Hemi WK could (EPA mpg ratings are laboratory and not real world so the delta is actually bigger).

        After having two diesel Jeeps I can’t find a better tow vehicle / daily driver / family hauler for the money (Toureg, X5d, ML350 Bluetec are all $10k higher base price).

        You can’t go wrong with either. Resale on these is also great as I sold mine to someone in CA who bought it sight unseen for asking price (I did sell it for a good price though). Good luck!

    • I loved my 07 CRD as it was a beast (especially with the DPF delete and GDE Eco tune). The biggest issue I had with it was the gearing on it is terrible for high speed highway cruising. At 70 mph you are hitting 2,700 RPM sustained which is way to high to cruise comfortably. If I didn’t do a lot of highway speeds that fast I would have not sold it likely.

      OTOH now that I have the new one it is much nicer inside (ventilated seats are the best thing I’ve discovered almost ever as I don’t use a/c that often unless it’s too hot or going fast on the highway). I’m getting better mpg (seen low 30’s avg on highway) in the new one as well since it has 8 speeds and lofts along at a comfortable 2,000 RPM at 70-75 MPH.

  6. Glenn says:

    I just picked mine up. Black limited Eco diesel!

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