Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk unveiled

JEEP has officially revealed one of the world’s worst-kept secrets – the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

Pics and articles of the mysterious Trackhawk have been making headlines for more than a year, but now we can officially disclose exactly what it is.

A supercharged 6.2-litre V8, capable of generating 527kW and 874Nm, makes the Trackhawk the fastest and most powerful SUV on the market.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk rearThose figures are thanks to a supercharger forcing extra air into the cast-iron block. To keep temps under control, the latter features water jackets between the cylinders, while the crankshaft is forget steel with induction-hardened bearing surfaces (strong enough to withstand firing pressures of 1600psi).

Forged-alloy pistons are also coupled to powder-forged connecting rods with high-load-capacity bushing carbon-coated piston pins. The supercharger is running a relatively conservative maximum 11.6psi of boost (and is sealed for life) and its drive system’s one-way clutch de-coupler improves refinement.

Read about the 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk review

The muscular V8’s supercharger is fed air via a cold-air scoop in the lower facia, which replaces the driver’s side fog lamp and helps feed the 92mm throttle body. So it’s safe to say that the Trackhawk won’t be all show and no go.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk engineThis hardcore engine, mated to a TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission, translates to rapid on-road performance. In fact (and thanks in part to Standard Launch Control) the Trackhawk swoops from 0-100km/h in a scintillating 3.6 seconds, performs a standing quarter mile in 11.6 seconds at 186km/h, and has a top speed of 290km/h.

Granted, these aren’t figures the average 4x4er usually chases, but you can’t deny how impressive they are.

“The new Grand Cherokee 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,” Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA Global, said.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk sideFor punters not interested in racetracks, the Trackhawk has a towing capacity of 3272kg, clearance level of 205.4mm (25mm lower than non-SRT Grand Cherokees), wheelbase of 2913.7mm, approach angle of 18 degrees, ramp-breakover angle of 18.4 degrees, payload of 612kg, and a kerb weight of 2433kg.

Equipped on the Trackhawk is Jeep’s Quadra-Trac on-demand four-wheel drive system, with an electronic limited-slip rear diff and a single-speed active transfer case. A stronger rear driveshaft connects to a new rear axle, and for better load distribution, additional torque capacity and overall durability, the diff features revised housing design, revised ring-and-pinion tooth geometry and new four-point axle mounting scheme.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk interiorThe Trackhawk also implements Jeep’s Selec-Track system, which includes Auto, Sport, Track, Snow and Tow modes. When the driver selects a mode the system separately controls the four-wheel drive system, transmission, paddle shifters, suspension and electric power steering. A Custom mode is also available and it allows the driver to personalise the vehicle’s performance.

Stopping power is afforded via 400mm Brembo brakes with six-piston callipers up front and 350mm Brembos with four-piston calipers down back. These stoppers are more than capable of pulling up this high-speed juggernaut.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk wheelsBrembos would be useless without a decent set of treads, so Pirelli 295/45ZR20 Scorpio Verde All-Season tyres are wrapped around 20 x 10-inch Titanium wheels. Forged aluminium wheels are available and can save you 5.5kg.

The Trackhawk looks every bit as good as it sounds, and we can’t wait to drive one. It will debut at the New York Auto Show, April 14-23, 2017.

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