Safety Alert: 2014/15 Jeep Cherokee owners who are dinghy (flat) towing. I now know of at least 5 other folks who are experiencing severe wobbling (swaying, shaking, etc.) while towing these vehicles with the Active II Drive (which are meant to be flat towed).
Here is my story: We purchased our Jeep Cherokee Limited in late April 2014 and started towing it around May 1, 2014 behind our Allegro Bus. We were replacing a 2009 Liberty that we had towed for 5 years with no problems over thousands of miles. This is the reason we stayed with the Jeep product.
We made a trip from Dallas to Yellowstone and back, to the Smoky Mountains and back (2 times) and a couple other short trips while towing the Cherokee with no problem except that pesky electronic parking brake that I still think comes on at times when it should not! Cost us a pair of rear tires already after my wife and I both looked to make sure it was off before hitting the road, but somehow it came on.
On a trip in Colorado in late September 2014 we hit a rough spot on the edge of a two lane paved road and the bus started shaking so bad I thought the front end had fallen out from under the bus. I stopped as soon as possible to check it out (fortunately no traffic). Found nothing wrong. Started up again and it still wanted to shake so I checked the towing apparatus and all was locked and good. Noticed the Jeep front wheels were slightly turned to the left. I straightened them and we went on with no problem the rest of that trip. Had another incident later on a local trip. Had to completely stop and start over.
Took it to the Jeep dealer. They checked front and rear alignment, etc. and found nothing wrong. I think they said they made slight adjustments. It has happened now about 5 to 7 times. These have all been at speeds of 45 mph or less. We cannot always duplicate the problem by driving over the same spot. You never know just when it will happen so the dealer has said there is nothing they can do since they cannot duplicate the problem. Basically to them it is not a problem if they cannot find anything and they cannot duplicate it. Like one person said in another forum while discussing this problem with his Jeep Cherokee, he did want to have to take his mechanic on a 1000 mile vacation trip just to try to get it to happen. This man checked everything on his motor, changed tire on his, changed or checked all his towing equipment, etc., Jeep alignments and it still wobbled when he hit rough spots! It is the Jeep!!
Since those of us who dinghy tow are a very small percentage of all the 2014/15 Cherokees sold, Jeep will probably not put much effort into this matter until there are enough accidents and injuries/deaths to bring notice. Please lets not wait to start an action to bring this to their attention. I can only imagine what will happen if this were to happen to someone while traveling on an interstate at a high rate of speed. I know how difficult it is to control the motor home at a slower speed when it happens.
This FMCA forum and others gives us an opportunity to get the word out to others who may be having the same issues. I have already met two others on the road who have the same problem and have found at least three more on forums (see the one above). I understand that some of you may not have this issue, but I suspect there are many others that are. Please start talking to other 2014/15 Jeep Cherokee owners who are flat/dinghy towing their Cherokees about this problem. If you or anyone else is having a problem we need to start a contact list so we can collectively get something done before someone gets killed. I am talking to everyone I see at a campground that may be towing a Cherokee and leave them my information or get theirs in the event they are having or will have a problem with what some call the death wobble.
I now tow a 2014 Silverado 4WD. We do not trust our 2014 Cherokee. I maybe just fine for everyday driving, but that is not the reason we purchased it. I hope you can get my contact information or leave me yours through this forum if you are having this issue.