Grand Cherokee Trackhawk offers high-performance, value

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If you are looking to get behind the wheel of the quickest SUV in the world, expect to pony up between $87,000 and $102,000 for the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

There is no better value for a high-performance SUV.

The Trackhawk delivers astounding performance numbers, backed by renowned SRT engineering that combines world-class on-road driving dynamics with luxury, refinement, and an array of innovative advanced technology.

Simply stated, the high-performance Trackhawk is very aggressive, with a nice sounding exhaust. It is fun to drive, offers lots of technology and buttons to push, and packs a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine that delivers 707 hp and 645 pound-feet of torque.

Cruising around Miami, I was super impressed with my Trackhawk’s incredible acceleration — hitting 60 mph in just 3.3 seconds. For SUVs, the quickest to 60 mph that I ever tested before the Trackhawk were the Tesla Model X (3.2 seconds), Bentley Bentayga (3.5 seconds), BMW X6 M (3.7 seconds), and Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S Coupe 4Matic (3.9 seconds).

The big V-8 is mated to an upgraded TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. And a new Brembo braking system includes gigantic front brakes that can slow the beast from 60-0 mph in 114 feet.

Standard performance goodies include Launch Control and Jeep Quadra-Trac on-demand four-wheel-drive system, which includes an electronic limited-slip rear differential and a single-speed active transfer case.

Building off the SRT trim, the Trackhawk adds exclusive 20-inch polished aluminum wheels, with standard Pirelli 295/45ZR20 Scorpion Verde tires, a unique front fascia with gloss black inserts, the 8.4-inch infotainment screen with navigation and Track Pages, and black chrome quad exhaust tips.

Inside, the cabin is accented in carbon fiber and metal, while the seats are wrapped in standard Nappa leather and suede. Also available is a Signature Leather Interior Package, with an embossed “Trackhawk” logo on the front seats. The Trackhawk’s in-cabin technology is geared toward performance as well. The instrument panel has a center-mounted tachometer, flanked by the speedometer on the left, which reaches all the way up to 200 mph.

Options include a dual-pane panoramic sunroof, aluminum Low Gloss Black wheels, a fully wrapped leather interior in Black or Black/Dark Ruby Red, 19-speaker Harman Kardon high-performance audio system, and a rear-seat entertainment center with Blu-ray.

Jeep’s super SUV is available in nine exterior colors: Billet Silver, Granite Crystal, Diamond Black, Ivory Tri-coat, Velvet Red, Rhino, Redline 2, True Blue, and Bright White — which is what my test vehicle came in.

Safety-wise, the 2018 Grand Cherokee’s automatic emergency braking feature is standard on the Trackhawk, as well as on the Summit and SRT trims. It also includes lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring with rear-cross traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, a rain-sensing windshield, and a self-parking system.

In terms of utility, the Grand Cherokee offers 36.3 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats and 68.3 with the rear seats folded down.

Front seat passengers have up to 40.3 inches of legroom and rear seat passenger receive 38.6 inches. Some may say there’s no need for a vehicle of this size that goes so crazy fast. But boy, am I happy Jeep gave it the green light. I got no problem with crazy, as long as it’s the good kind of crazy.

The Trackhawk gets 11 mpg in the city and 17 mpg on the highway.

Grant Miller is the publisher of Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277 or via email at Grant@CommunityNewspapers.com.


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