JU member Chris installed a black OEM grille from a 2001 Limited onto his 1999 Laredo, and also added a Stull Industries wire mesh backing. The Limited headlamp housings finish off this very impressive mod.
WJ grille and fascia assembly types:
Model / Year
Laredo / Sport / SE
Limited / Overland
Type A: The fascia and grille are a two-piece assembly and can be easily separated
Type B: The fascia and body-color grille are a one-piece assembly and cannot be taken apart and separated without permanently cutting it.
Type C: The fascia and grille are a two-piece assembly and can be separated, the grille will come off without removing the fascia.
1999-2003 Laredo chrome grilles (Type A) – The chrome grilles are separate from the fascia and can be removed and replaced with any of the 2001-2003 Limited grilles that feature the chrome throat rings. The available colors are listed in the chart below. The 1999-2003 Laredo chrome grilles can also be installed on 1999-2003 Limited models.
1999 and 2000 Limited grilles (Type B) – The body-colored Limited grilles used in 1999 and 2000 are manufactured only as a complete one-piece assembly attached to the fascia. To replace these grilles with either a Laredo chrome grille or a 2001-2003 chromed-ring grille requires that the existing grille be cut away from the fascia. Further details are provided in the Grille removal section.
2001-2003 Limited grilles (Type A) – These grilles are available separate from the fascia, and in the body colors listed in the chart below. The chrome trim throat rings, however, are not available separately. The 2001-2003 Limited grilles with the rings can be installed on all 1999-2003 Laredo models. Alternatively, Laredo chrome grilles can be installed on 1999-2003 Limited models.
2004 grilles (Type C) – Jeep redesigned the front grille and fascia for 2004. The new design allowed for a wide variety different grille variations that Jeep used in the model lineup. The outer part of the grille face featured either the body color or chrome finish while the inner portion was either a brushed silver finish or chrome. Some owners have successfully installed 2004 grilles onto 1999-2003 WJ’s using their existing fascias and headlamp mounting modules, but that method requires a slight amount of fit adjustments in order to get the grille to seat properly. See Grilles Part 4.
Custom grille inserts for the WJ
A popular modification among Grand Cherokee owners is a metal insert that is placed behind the factory grille. Several different styles are available and the inserts can be added to any model and year WJ grand Cherokee. Shown below are some of the choices available on the market, from custom manufactured inserts to inexpensive mesh that can be purchased at Home Depot type stores. Most inserts can be installed without removing the fascia, although taking the fascia off makes installation much easier. Fascia removal only takes about 10 minutes, less time than you would spending trying to work the insert into to a tight area. Instructions for removing the grille, or loosening it up enough to access it from behind, can be found on the Grille and fascia removal page.NOTE: Extreme caution should be used when handling wire mesh as the edges can be very sharp. It is highly recommended that protective gloves be worn when performing a wire mesh insert installation.
Stull Industries stainless steel insert:
1. Stull Industries diamond wire grille insert model #2012, custom pre-cut from the factory. The grille insert features a 304 woven stainless steel mesh and 304 stainless steel rod. This specially engineered insert is designed to install without any modification to your Jeep and can be installed with common hand tools. Shown in photo # 1 is Chris Henry’s 2001 Limited. The Stull insert for the WJ retails for around $130. More information can be found at Stull Industries.com.
2. Stull Industries diamond wire grille insert shown installed on a 2004 Overland grille. This is actually a 2002 Limited with a 2004 grille upgrade, owned by Jeep Unlimited member LowriderWJ. Due to the new grille design for 2004, the insert is attached to the headlamp mounting module. The installation on 2004 models is very easy, as the grille is held on by clips and can be easily removed without removing the fascia.
3. Same as #2, close-up view.
Billet style horizontal slat chrome insert:
4. Billet style horizontal slat chrome insert, shown with chrome grille. Available on Ebay for around $70.
5. Same as No. 4 above, shown with 2001-2003 Limited chrome rings grille.
6. Billet style vertical slat chrome grille insert, shown with chrome grille. These adhesive-backed inserts attach to the black inner grille support and are available on Ebay for around $30. Also available from Autogrilles.com (mention this web site for a special discount).
Aluminum gutter guard wire mesh / other mesh:
7. Aluminum gutter guard wire mesh. This is one of many different types of inexpensive material that can be used for a grille insert. Typically available at Home Depot and other hardware stores for just a few dollars, it must be custom cut and formed to fit the grille assembly. Other types of mesh that people have used include “metal lathe”, “stucco mesh”, “diamond wire” and even “chicken wire”. If using a metal mesh, it is suggested that it be painted prior to installation to prevent it from rusting.
Speed Grille insert:
8. Speed Grille insert from Street Scene Equipment. The grilles are made from durable 5052-grade aluminum, in a standard anodized satin finish, or can be painted to color-match your vehicle’s paint scheme. Most Speed grilles require no cutting or drilling for installation, using a patent-pending clip-on system. Detailed instructions and all necessary hardware are included with the kit. Available for around $130.00.
Billet insert for 2004 models:
9. Brushed aluminum billet grille insert from Mr. Grille. Shown installed on a 2004 Limited. The grilles are made from T-6 aluminum for strength and durability. These grills install in place of the existing black plastic backing. There is no cutting or drilling to the vehicle required. Other styles are also available for all 1993-2003 model Grand Cherokee’s.
2002 SE with Aluminum gutter guard wire mesh
Jeeps Unlimited member BigJamesProp used aluminum gutter guard for the insert on his 2002 GC Special Edition. The top row of mesh was formed around the openings of the chrome piece and then just sandwiched between the grille and the grille backing. It is held in place without any attachments. The lower mesh was also formed around the openings, and then hot-glued around the edges to keep it firmly in place.
2001 Limited with Stull Industries insert
Gbgary’s black 2001 Limited with a Stull insert (and many other mods).
2000 Laredo with wire mesh insert
Ryan Church’s 2000 Laredo showing custom grille inserts along with the custom brushed aluminum look on the grille. Also notice the modified headlights with the deleted amber reflectors and lenses. You can see more of Ryan’s photos Here. You can also visit his website at Carolina Classic Trucks.com.