Let me start by saying, I love almost everything about the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. The Hemi engine is flawless. The seats are super comfy. The ride and handling are absolutely track-worthy -- even for such a large vehicle.
There was just this one niggling little thing that gave me fits during the test period: The gear shift. I occasionally encounter touchy shifters that perpetually put you in the wrong gear, and it always irks me. Previously I've encountered them in the Nissan Murano and Rogue. Currently, I found one in the SRT.
Perhaps there's a knack to the shift that I just didn't master. Perhaps I have a heavy hand. But whatever the reason, I would intend to be in D/S and would end up in R or N. I would intend to be in P and would find myself in R. Best case scenario would be when I would mean to end up in D/S or R and end up in N. And that's because the car wouldn't accidentally move the wrong direction. I learned pretty quickly to pause before taking my foot off the brake to do the visual gear check.
When I put it out there on twitter, I found that it wasn't just me:
@jillciminillo You beat me to it. And a few times I got S instead of D (not good for fuel economy).
— Michael Hagerty (@TireKicker) June 20, 2013
A week is hardly enough time to get used to a car's quirks. So, perhaps owners would, in time, find the right finesse to hit the proper gear without the visual check. But, I just offer a heads up to any test drivers out there ... Be sure you're in the right gear before you go.