1975-1983 Jeep Cherokee Chief Parts & Accessories
In 1975, the Cherokee Chief package was introduced. Besides the trim changes, this model received larger fenders and wider axles, allowing larger tires to be fitted to further improve off-road ability. Four-door models were not available with "wide-track" axles. Dana 44 model axles were used both in the front and the rear at least through 1979. Brake hardware was mostly General Motors equipment, with disc brakes up front (optional on earlier models) and drum brakes in the rear. All Cherokees had semi-elliptical leaf springs in the front and rear.
Engine choices consisted of AMC I6 or V8 powerplants. A range of AMC engines were offered including the 258 cu in (4.2 L) inline six-cylinder, a 360 cu in (5.9 L) V8 or the 401 cu in (6.6 L) V8. The 401 was discontinued at the end of 1978. A T-18a four-speed manual gearbox was standard for all years, while through 1979 the General Motors Turbo 400 was optional. After 1979, the TH400 was replaced by the Chrysler's TorqueFlite 727.
A gear-driven Dana 20 transfer case with 2.03:1 low range was standard with the manual gearbox, while the TH400 automatics received the permanent four-wheel-drive QuadraTrac system. It included a vacuum-operated center differential lock. The transfer case was offset, allowing it to sit just above the frame to avoid obstacles, and the chain itself is larger than nearly any other. A 2.57:1 low range was optional.
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