Car Hunter: 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is the latest concoction from Detroit, representing the ultimate ‘bang for your buck’ in the ever growing segment of performance SUVs. Introduced in the latest generation of the Grand Cherokee’s existence and developed alongside Fiat Chrysler’s performance arm, SRT, a 707hp, 868Nm of torque (527kw) 6.2L supercharged V8 ‘Hellcat’ heart transplant was conducted providing the Trackhawk with enough power to rocket to 100 km/h in just 3.7 seconds.
To put this in perspective, a Ferrari 488 produces only 661hp, and just beats the significantly larger Trackhawk to 100 km/h by only 0.7 seconds.
And you can see why they call it the ‘Hellcat’, a large supercharger whine accompanies the roar of the HEMI V8 under load, sounding as if Satan himself had strapped his own feline friend to the motor. Gone are the simple lines of the regular Grand Cherokee, with Jeep sending this SUV to the gym.
The SUV has returned with more defined muscular lines, larger brakes, better suspension and some new interior pieces. Large bonnet scoops and larger intakes adorn the front of the Trackhawk, allowing for the engine to receive as much air as mechanically possible, as Satan’s supercharger is powerful enough to suck all of the air out of a 10 x 13 x 8 foot room, in about a minute.
Move along to the sides and you’ll notice bright yellow Brembo brakes, wrapped around large wheels that are dripped in sticky Pirelli rubber. The word, ‘Supercharged’ runs underneath the Grand Cherokee insignia, that you are in the presence of a beast. Move to the rear and you’ll notice a large jet black set of quad pipes, producing only pure auditory pleasure.
The interior of the latest generation of Grand Cherokee steps up in both quality and features, with the Trackhawk receiving all the accoutrements that a top of the range vehicle would. Most notably; rich leather, American sized seats – perfect for long trips, a great infotainment screen and digital dashboard where you can access SRT’s performance pages, testing you to see how fast you can run a quarter mile, reach 0-100 km/h, and view all the data you could possibly need.
You are immediately greeted by the word ‘Supercharged’ on the door sills, (there’s just something special about terminology that includes the word ‘super’), carbon fibre splashed throughout, and, it’s not a performance car without flashy red seatbelts. However, the true icing on the cake is the launch control button, symbolised by a drag strip ‘Christmas tree’. Press this and the car preps all 707hp and 868Nm of torque to ensure you can muscle to 100km/h in less than 4 seconds.
With great power comes great responsibility; this is a mantra that SRT is well aware of, hence the Trackhawk comes with two keys, in both black and red. Say you somehow trust your dearest friend, child or valet with your beloved beast, give them the black key, and the Trackhawk will be ‘tamed’ to a measly 500hp. For when you are prepared to unleash all 707 horsies, use the red key, providing unlimited access to the Hellcat motor and all that it has to offer.
This leaves me to provide a ‘Discovercars’ rating for the Trackhawk. A Discovercars rating, simply, allows us to judge cars based off four simple criteria:
- Practicality: how well can you transport both people and other objects
- Daily Score: how does the car fair in day to day use, including factors such as fuel consumption, dimensions, comfort
- Performance: we didn’t come here to review regular cars, we’re looking for cars that push the envelope in either acceleration, power or handling
- and Cool Factor: really easy to judge, how easily can this car make you utter the word ‘wow’
You can watch the Trackhawk in action, here:
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