Now close your eyes and imagine that dialed up to 11.
FCA is a bit like that group of unpopular kids in high school that have that one guy that drags them down a few notches. Jeep and Dodge are the two likable ones while Fiat gets a pass for being the foreign exchange student. On the other hand, Chrysler is the obvious runt that’s made too many memories with the group to be let go. To gain a few extra popularity points, Jeep announced not too long ago that it would borrow the 6.2-liter supercharged V8 from the Dodge Challenger and Charger Hellcat and put it into a Jeep Grand Cherokee.
The SRT Grand Cherokee has always been one of those SUV oddities like the BMW X6 M that may not make sense but still invokes a smile when seen in traffic. With a few Hellcat badges and 707 horsepower engine developed in secret, that smile will quickly morph into a look of sheer terror. Until now, we haven’t been able to get a good idea of what the Hellcat-powered Grand Cherokee (dubbed the Trackhawk) will look like, but Jeep has just released the new SRT Grand Cherokee and using that angry face, we can start to piece together an image of the Trackhawk. While the SRT doesn’t exactly appear to be subdued, only the red brake calipers and Hellcat-like front fascia allude to the 6.4-liter V8 that lives behind.
Interestingly, this engine is smaller than the Hellcat’s but only makes 475 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. Respectable, especially with a 0-60 mph time of 4.9 seconds, but nowhere near 707 horsepower, 650 lb-ft of torque, and a proposed 0-60 mph time of less than three seconds that the Trackhawk should have. If you’re wondering how the heavier Jeep gets a better acceleration time than its muscle car cousins, blame the all-wheel drive system that can put the power down more effectively than the rear-wheel drive system in the other members of the Hellcat family. When the Trackhawk rolls around in 2017, we can expect to see some hood vents, larger air intakes up front, new wheels, and of course, a handful of Hellcat badges.
Until that happens, we’ll have to keep our imaginations busy and witnessing the new Grand Cherokee SRT lapping a track should give us the inspiration we need to do that.