Jeep’s Grand Cherokee Trackhawk will punish performance SUV rivals at half their price

When news broke that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) would be cramming its 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V8 from the Challenger and Charger SRT Hellcat into a new “Trackhawk” Jeep Grand Cherokee, it was clear 707 horsepower would have significant performance potential. Now we’re getting a better idea of just how significant that potential will be.

During FCA’s dealer conference in Las Vegas, NV, the brand revealed that the Gran Cherokee Trackhawk would get from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. For comparison sake, the $157,000 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S, powered by a 4.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 with 570 hp and 590 pound-feet of torque, needs 3.8 seconds to accomplish the same task.

In addition to the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk’s 707 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque, it will come standard with all-wheel drive, massive Brembo brakes, 295-section tires (or wider) at all four corners, a lowered suspension, and unique styling.

The Trackhawk will be rivaled by the Mercedes-Benz ML63 AMG that develops 550 hp and 560 lb-ft of torque from a twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V8, the BMW X5 M with 567 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque from a 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8, the Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR with 550 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque from a 5.0-liter supercharged V8, and the aforementioned Porsche Cayenne Turbo S.

Presently, the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk’s proposed 707 hp will be a segment leader by a strong margin, but by the time it’s introduced in 2017, the stage may have changed and there could be a performance superior.

Whichever way you slice it, hyper-performance SUVs are now developing twice the power mustered by sports cars just a decade ago and have the handling chops to back up their enormous powertrains.

Presently, there’s no word on the Trackhawk’s price, but expect it to retail somewhere in the neighborhood of $70,000 — just above the price points for the Hellcat twins.