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Jeep coy over uber Grand Cherokee

Four-by-phwoar: Insanely fast 527kW Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Trackhawk is a distinct possibility for power-mad Aussie punters, who already love the SRT (pictured).

Australia a prime target for sub four-second, Hellcat-powered Jeep Grand Cherokee

Jeep logo31 Aug 2015

By TIM ROBSON

AUSTRALIA’S seemingly insatiable lust for V8 power could see the faintly ridiculous Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Trackhawk blast its way into local showrooms.

Revealed at a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) dealer conference in Las Vegas last week, the top-spec Grand Cherokee is set to powered by Chrysler’s Hellcat supercharged 6.2-litre V8.

The Hellcat engine – as used in the Dodge Charger/Challenger SRT – is capable of producing 527kW and 880Nm of torque, and Jeep told dealers the Trackhawk could nail 0-100km/h in just 3.5 seconds.

This is 1.1s faster than the current Grand Cherokee hotrod, the SRT, and is even a match for the current Porsche 911 Turbo.

Such is the demand for the supercharged big-block engine, Chrysler has doubled its production run for 2016.

Locally, FCA Australia is enjoying strong sales for the Grand Cherokee, with the range-topping SRT a popular part of the line-up.

The Grand Cherokee sits at 7274 sales for 2015, with the SRT contributing 792 units. Jeep sold 1482 hot-rod SRTs in 2014.

Locally, the Grand Cherokee SRT sells for $82,000 before on-road costs, and runs Chrysler’s 6.4-litre naturally aspirated Hemi V8 under its long bonnet. It’ s billed as the “most powerful Jeep vehicle ever”, and produces 344kW and 624Nm.

FCA Australia director of corporate communications Lucy McLellan agreed that the unique combination of powerful V8 engine and large SUV held a special place in the hearts of Jeep fans locally.

“Australia has a higher percentage mix of SRT than any other market in the world, testament to Australian’s love of power and large displacement engines,” she told GoAuto. “This would be even stronger if supply wasn’t an issue.

“But yes, FCA Australia is indeed pleased with the response and success of its high performance Grand Cherokee.” Ms McLellan was unable to comment on the potential of the Trackhawk for the local market, saying only “we have no confirmation that the model exists.” No confirmation of right-hand-drive production has been made.

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