Holy Grail: 1998 Jeep ZJ Grand Cherokee 5.9 limited Original Owner – SOLD?

Jun 2020 | Classifinds, Truckin Tuesday

August 16, 2020 update – The Craigslist ad used for this post expired, so with no replacement found, we’re calling this one “Sold!”

As a former owner and Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo ZJ enthusiast, the holy grail for me would be to get a rare final year 1998 5.9 Limited model like the one just listed yesterday on Craigslist in New Durham, New Hampshire with only a stated 77,000 original miles posted by the son-in-law of the original owner for $8,650.   While the seller’s asking price is above the high point of the NADA Guides Classic Car Online Valuation Tool “Low”, “Average”, and “High” Retail Value of $3,025, $5,200, $7,900, respectively.  We wouldn’t haggle as the premium is for a non-beaten one-owner example with less than 100K and no rust.

While Jeep produced its highly successful “ZJ” Grand Cherokee from 1993 through 1998, the company offered the 5.9L Limited such as the on featured here for the last year of production only to keep sales strong before its replacement entered production.  Having more luxury and performance than that of the regular Limited, nearly fifteen thousand of the approximately one quarter million Grand Cherokees produced that year ended up being 5.9 Limited models.  In addition to the luxury features, Jeep stuffed Chrysler’s 245 horsepower 5.9 Liter Magnum V8 of the time under the hood.  With 345 pound-feet of torque on hand,  Grand Cherokee 5.9’s were capable of 0-60 mile per hour times of about seven seconds which put it on par with some sports car of the day.  Credited as the first high performance SUV ever offered, Chrysler advertised the model as “The Fastest SUV In The World” and it was named the 1998 four-wheel drive vehicle of the year by Petersen’s 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine.  Here’s a famous commercial from 1988 featuring that very tag line:

The 5.9 Jeep Grand Cherokee included a number of improvements over the top of the line “limited” Grand Cherokee, that were unique to the 5.9. This included, in addition to the premium motor, all the options found on the limited edition, in addition to:

  • a higher output alternator
  • revised low profile roof racks (used on the next generation)
  • unique wood grain accents
  • full calf nap leather interior
  • chrome tipped exhaust
  • unique front grille
  • unique side rocker panels
  • fully functional heat extractor hood louvers
  • rear leather armrest
  • higher output Infinity premium stereo system with trunk speakers bar
  • leather wrapped shift and e-brake handles
  • unique leather door inserts, armrests and console lid.
  • unique five star wheels
  • black sidewall (BSW) tires
  • electric cooling fan in lieu of a mechanical clutch fan used with the 5.2

Here’s the seller’s description:

“Hello and thanks for looking at my post.
I’m selling for my Father in-law his jeep. It is a one owner vehicle and has had less than 1700 miles put on it since 2006. The odometer is at 77000 now. Everything works and it is in extremely good shape inside and out. It has brand new Tires, shocks, brakes and a starter. There was also a factory recall that was performed earlier this year. The only bad thing is that the headliner has started to droop. If you know the jeep you know how rear they are. I do not need to know what you think I can get for it. They have sold on e-bay for over 14000 dollars and there is a 5.2 limited with more miles selling for more that what I’m asking. So no low ballers you will be block without a response. 

Do you have a Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited  5.9L story you’d like to share?  Comment below and let us know!

  1. Cory

    I drove a ’97 ZJ while in college. I have always lusted after one of these. Great find.

    • Anonymous

      Just bought a 98 limited V8 177000 miles fair shape any idea what I can get for it .


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