Spy photos already made it fairly clear that the facelifted 2018 Jeep Cherokee will have its headlights stuck back together, but FCA has now confirmed these suspicions by releasing the first official images of the updated SUV. The full debut with all the details will come at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on 16 January.

Jeep’s photos depict the Cherokee with two different front-end designs. The red SUV is likely the range-topping Trailhawk version because of the tow hooks poking out of the bumper and the high-mounted fog lights. Conversely, the silver example has a more conventional nose without the hooks. The Trailhawk also seems to have a slightly higher ride height for better capability on tough terrain.

By getting rid of the split headlights from the existing Cherokee, the updated model is all set to introduce a more integrated look to the Jeep range. There's now a closer family resemblance to the latest Compass and Grand Cherokee.

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2019 Jeep Cherokee

The changes are less evident at the rear of the car. There are blink-and-you'll-miss-them tweaks to the rear lights and the bumper also has revisions including a larger section of metallic trim. Inside, the updates are similarly minor. The cabin layout is the same, but there appears to be more metallic trim, which lends the Cherokee a more sophisticated look. Will it be able to compete with our fancy European models, though? That seems less likely. 

Jeep’s teaser doesn’t tell us much more about the refreshed Cherokee other than what’s evident in these photos. However, the company says that the SUV has 'even more fuel-efficient powertrain options,' which seems to indicate that there's a new engine available. The most likely choice for the addition would be for Jeep to use the new 2-litre turbocharged four-cylinder unit from the recently introduced Jeep Wrangler.

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Gallery: 2018 Jeep Cherokee

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Introducing the New 2019 Jeep® Cherokee

December 19, 2017 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The most capable mid-size sport-utility vehicle (SUV) boasts a new, authentic and more premium design, along with even more fuel-efficient powertrain options. Additional images and complete vehicle information will be available January 16, 2018, at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

About Jeep Brand
Built on more than 75 years of legendary heritage, Jeep is the authentic SUV with class-leading capability, craftsmanship and versatility for people who seek extraordinary journeys. The Jeep brand delivers an open invitation to live life to the fullest by offering a full line of vehicles that continue to provide owners with a sense of security to handle any journey with confidence.

The Jeep vehicle lineup consists of the Cherokee, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Renegade and Wrangler. To meet consumer demand around the world, all Jeep models sold outside North America are available in both left and right-hand drive configurations and with gasoline and diesel powertrain options.