By on July 29, 2013

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My junior year of high school involved a social studies course taught by a dour, acid-tongued woman, a Scottish leftist in the tradition of George Galloway, who delighted in admonishing us for our bad behavior by labeling us “a bunch of spoiled, upper-middle class brats”. Well, guilty as charged for this writer. Despite the not-so-hidden proletarian contempt she may have had for us, I credit her with teaching a lesson on the Simon-Erlich wager, an event that proved formative in shaping my view of the world.

In 1968 Paul Ehrlich wrote a book entitled The Population Bomb that predicted all kinds of catastrophic events, namely famine as a result of overpopulation. 12 years after its publication, Ehrlich and Libertarian academic Julian Simon made a bet on a basket of commodities, with Ehrlich betting that their prices would rise, to the detriment of humanity.

Neither of Ehrlich’s predictions came to pass, but doomsday catastrophe narratives are still central to our discourse: Y2K, peak oil, global warming, the zombie apocalypse and so on and so forth. As silly and alarmist as theories of global collapse may be, people are happy to buy in to them (especially the zombie apocalypse) no matter how ill-prepared they may be for the consequences.

I strongly suspect that a lot of it has to do with the sense of alienation many people feel in regards to our modern existence. How perverse, if not sadistic, must one be to gleefully anticipate the breakdown of civilization and the mass expiration a variety of the globe’s species, humans included?

This phenomenon extends to muscle cars as well. It seems that every few years, we are ready to give the muscle car its last rites, though it’s less of a desire to do so rather than a dispassionate look at reality; between CAFE, rising fuel prices and increasingly burdensome ownership costs, it’s hard to imagine a future automotive landscape involving the V8 powered American sports coupe.

But time and time again, the Big Three manage to outdo themselves. 2005 brought us the retro-looking Ford Mustang. 2008 was the year of the Dodge Challenger. 2010 saw the Chevrolet Camaro return to much fanfare. A year later, Ford brought back the 5.0 nameplate. And a year after that, we got the most mental Mustang yet, the 662 horsepower Shelby GT500.

2013 – or, more accurately, 2014, brings us yet another over-the-top muscle car, except, this isn’t a muscle car in the traditional sense. The Grand Cherokee SRT8 is a bit like the Canadian-market Pontiac Parisienne wagon with wood paneling and a 400 cid V8 that my cousin once used in the late 1980s to dispatch Porsche 928s in various Traffic Light Grand Prix.

That may not be an entirely fair comparison. On the one hand, the JGC SRT does have a big V8 – 6.4L, 470 horsepower and 465 lb-ft – and it also weighs close to three tons. But no B-Body station wagon ever looked this mean, wore such high performance Pirellis or Brembo brakes. Nor did it have an 8-speed automatic transmission (new for 2014, and said to help improve fuel consumption) with Launch Control.

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I have to admit that up until now, I never really bothered with launch control systems. To me, it seemed like yet another gimmick meant to impress the kind of people who enthusiastically told me about how enthusiastic the folks on Top Gear were about the Nissan GT-R and were unable to fathom why I didn’t like it. But since SRT decided that there would be a big button marked “launch” with a nice pictogram of a “christmas tree” right on the center console, I decided to give it a go. Closed course, professional wanker, all that sort of stuff. Don’t try this at home.

Engaging Launch Control is simple.

  1. Come to a stop.
  2. Make eye contact with the attractive woman in the car next to you, especially if she is in the passenger seat and somebody you presume to be her life partner is driving. Bonus points if she regards your black-with-red-brake-calipers-and-booming-rap-music with utter disdain.
  3. Press the button marked “Launch”
  4. Left foot on the brake, right foot should mash the throttle into the carpet. At this point, the computer takes over and holds the revs at a steady three grand.
  5. When appropriate, release the brake. Wait a split second for your brain to wrongly assume nothing is happening. This is simply the tires getting traction. At this point, you’ll wonder if leaving the open packet of Dare® Real Fruit Gummies on the dash was a good idea.
  6. The 5331 lb Jeep will blast towards extralegal speeds faster than you can think of an overwrought motoring journalism cliche to describe the experience. Dare® Real Fruit Gummies will pepper the cabin like birdshot. On subsequent days, you will find them in the vehicle’s carpet, debate whether to eat them, and then do so, because this car brings out the disgusting fratboy in everyone.

In accordance with my pledge to maintain some semblance of decorum at TTAC, I will refrain from bragging about my exploits on the ragged edge of the pursuit of V-Max, the various Teutonic luxury sports coupes driven by Chinese exchange students that I obliterated from stoplights, the half-screamed, half-giggled mock pleas from various women to “stop driving soooo fast” as their boyfriends sat terrified and helpless.

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Instead I’ll say this; my week with the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 cost me $260 in fuel over one week and 500 miles of driving. It was worth every single penny and I would do it again if I was lucky enough to get that opportunity, and I don’t say that because of my firm belief in cornucopian theory and the ease with which we’ll be able to recover “tight oil” in the future. In those seven days, I was able to, variously, transport myself 4 of my friends and all of our gear to a lake house, a bachelor party, a wedding, drive my brother to a rural campground in Northern Ontario and take my parents out for dinner in peerless comfort. On one highway cycle I saw 23 mpg while driving at 75 mph with the A/C going strong, and I could have maintained that figure consistently if I kept my foot out of the throttle. Which is, of course, impossible in this car.

I cannot think of one vehicle that does everything with such ease and grace, that can still look elegant and subdued while possessing the capability for unrestrained belligerence. You would not be embarrassed if you had to take a client out to a round of golf, or if you were to line up against someone on a north Georgia drag strip.

The best part about the Grand Cherokee SRT8  is that its overall character has filtered down to the civilian-grade versions as well. A V6 powered Laredo obviously isn’t going to behave in the Silverback-gorilla-in-heat manner that the SRT does, but it’s still a very nice car for people who don’t want to bankrupt themselves at the gas pump. But you still get the same composed ride, nicely-weighted steering and high quality interior. The real test will be for Chrysler to imbue forthcoming products like the Cherokee, the 200 and others with the same overall greatness. The Grand Cherokee SRT8 proves that it’s within the realm of possibility for Chrysler – or any American manufacturer. But in the end, it all comes down to the execution – or lack thereof.

 

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102 Comments on “Capsule Review: 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT...”


  • avatar
    CelticPete

    Well maybe the MKZ or whatever really is that bad. Because this is exactly the kind of review that redeems TTAC’s credibility. Its the kind of car that everyone thinks is stupid or useless – until they drive it.

  • avatar

    Two of my friends bought the 2012 JGCSRT despite my suggestion they wait till it got uconnect touch. I don’t think they really cared about it (not as much as I do) so they bought it anyway. Now they’ve seen my new 2013 300c SRT8 and they want it so I guess they’ll upgrade within 2 years.
    youtube.com/watch?v=-kQtDlt6Sl4

    As for “fuel costs”: I’m paying $4.15 per gallon here for Premium 93.

    I too put around 500 miles on my car within days of buying it. This thing is a BLAST to drive, but not a blast to fuel. This car does get a few MPG better than my 6.1 when driven modestly, but it’s almost impossible to keep the 6.4-L in “eco mode” because it’s too heavy. Hopefully the next Hemi will be Aluminum.

    And tires are no joke either. One of my friend’s Jeeps needs new Pirelli tires to the tune of $1500. I have to get rid of my 3-season Eagle Supercars for Eagle GT All-Seasons. I recommend he does the same cause they’ll cost about $400 less for the set and installation.

    These cars force you to want to exceed all posted speed limits. They force you to choose to drive 16 miles to Walmart instead of going to the local one 4 miles away. You end up paying for it in tires, fuel and speeding tickets.
    youtube.com/watch?v=xv4VXAa7DMA

    The size and weight of this new jeep is ridiculous. I’m fairly certain tuners would prefer the 1st gen instead. Chrysler really broke the mold with the 1st generation models – they were ahead of their time.

  • avatar
    OneAlpha

    This vehicle is very much America given physical form – powerful, fast, durable, inexpensive compared to foreign equivalents and as an added bonus, good-looking.

    And, as CelticPete pointed out, bestowed with exceptionalism either not readily apparent or misinterpreted as crassness or vulgarity at first glance.

    Just like America.

  • avatar
    Spartan

    This Jeep is the cutesy 20-something skank that your wife doesn’t want you hanging around because she knows what she’s up to.

    She just wants to ride you for a while (hooning)
    Take all your money (fuel)
    And when your wife makes you feel bad about it (guilt trip/kids/etc.)
    You’ll cut her off (trade).

    Good luck guys, have fun while you can. I had my hooning-mobile already and 3 years later, it’s gone, see my avatar. I sure miss her :(

  • avatar
    danio3834

    I can’t wait for the 8 speed in the V8 LX cars. It did wonders for the JGCSRT8.

  • avatar
    AustinOski

    I need to drive a JGC (of any sort). So many conflicting reviews of these vehicles our there (more than usual). I’ve ready they ride great. I’ve read they have a terrible ride. I’ve read they are Bentley quiet, I’ve read the road noise is terrible.

    • 0 avatar
      Spartan

      The 1st gen Jeep Cherokee SRT-8 was indeed terrible. I’m not sure about the new ones, but I’ve had a few rides in a 1st gen Jeep SRT8 and it felt worn, it rattled and the doors shut with a very raggedy clank. It had 47k miles on it. It seemed as if the power had ripped it apart.

      Time will tell with the new model, but I wouldn’t take a long position on one.

      • 0 avatar
        NotFast

        Good vehicle to lease then?

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        I agree with Spartan. I find the Explorer Sport much more livable. Its down 100 HP/100 FT/LBS from the SRT8, but it still gets up and goes. I can also get more stuff in the Explorer.

        However, if you want a go fast SUV, the SRT8 is the ticket.

        • 0 avatar
          Spartan

          My only gripe with the Explorer Sport is that it’s downright slow by comparison. However, that 3.5L TT in the Taurus SHO makes it an absolute rocket, my wife’s DD is a ’10 SHO and with an intake and tune, it is a monster.

          However, I have the same fear that the SHO will suffer from the same fate as the 1st Gen SRT8 Jeeps. The power will rip it apart eventually and it’ll just be a throwaway. We’re at 47k miles on the SHO and it’s not showing too many signs of wear, but it doesn’t feel as tight as it did when we first brought her home.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I completely agree. The Sport is quick, but not fast. The platform and transmission limits the power they can wring out of the 3.5TT. I just find it to be a better long term vehicle than the Jeep SRT8.

            The F-150 has way more torque in the 3.5TT than any of the D platform vehicles. I can imagine a Mustang with the ecoboost could easily be 400HP/400 FT/LBS or more.

            If you have an early SHO, the weak points are the brakes and some suspension components. They aren’t prone to failure, but Ford has beefed up almost all ecoboost V6 vehicles for 2012 or 2013.

  • avatar
    mikey

    Great review, Derek. Just one question. Do we call this an SUV,or a CUV?

    • 0 avatar
      niky

      Granted it’s a longitudinally-mounted engine mated to rear-wheel drive with four-wheel drive functionality… I think it gets a pass as an SUV.

      As opposed to the front-wheel drive based Ford Explorer…

      But then again, used to be you had to have a ladder frame to be considered a “true” SUV…

    • 0 avatar
      Secret Hi5

      Considering the performance of the GC SRT8, I think it actually deserves the “Sport” in SUV. (You can argue about the “U” part of it.)

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Based on M-Class underneath = CUV.

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        M-Class is based on the Grand Cherokee.

        Look at the development times, and engineering notes. Jeep took (or was forced to) take the lead. Not the other way around.

        • 0 avatar
          niky

          Also note… the Grand Cherokee line-up is available with a low-range transfer case, which some BOFs WON’T give you.

          Unibody vs. BOF isn’t a valid measure of what’s an SUV nowadays…

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Never has been. The Grand Cherokee has been unibody since the ’94 downsized one came out. And they are definitely SUVs.

            I do love this truck, can’t justify having an SRT8, but I sure would love to have one in the garage. My beater ’02 will have to suffice.

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            The SRT8 is a bit much—although there’s still plenty of bang for your buck—but the Overland or even the Limited are solid values that make it very clear that the X5, Cayenne/Touareg and ML-Class are superior only by badge.

          • 0 avatar

            +1 I would take 2 GC Limiteds for the price of one Range Rover

  • avatar
    blackbolt

    If you buy anything with an SRT8 badge you know a healthy appetite for dead raptors is a given. If you can stomach the sticker the price for gas should be a no big deal.

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    Vulgar, but not without appeal.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    “Bonus points if she regards your black-with-red-brake-calipers-and-booming-rap-music with utter disdain.”

    Derek, you almost lost me after reading “booming-rap-music”. Showing my age and proud of it, I guess…

    I got through the very well-written review anyway, and glad I did, because I enjoyed every bit – well, except for that phrase.

    Sounds like Chrysler has a winner on their hands again. I can’t help but wonder if the long-term reliability compares to similar vehicles, or at least as similar as possible…

    I know Chrysler isn’t the same company that blessed us with Ultradrive in its many forms, as well as the equally infamous 2.7L, but I don’t believe I would risk buying a Chrysler-anything right now, especially since Chevy has so far been very good to me these last 9+ years.

    I hope and suspect I’m wrong, as I really desired to have Chrysler’s wings on my car. Maybe some day.

    Perhaps I need to do research, but this isn’t the type of vehicle I’d buy in a hundred years. It’s hard enough to keep my foot out of my Impala’s 300 horses as it is!

    • 0 avatar

      I alternate between rap, country, classic rock, Motown/Soul, largely depending on my mood.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        Derek, after the fratboy comment, I actually scrolled up to check if this was a Doug DeMuro post. Really. He must have an infectious personality. Or sense of humor. Or something.

        • 0 avatar

          Lorenzo,

          Here’s the thing. Doug writes a few articles per week. I write a few per day. It is impossible to write every single post in that style/level of quality. It is incredibly draining on one’s creative juices. Luckily, the music came to me this time. I am sure it would come more often if I had a few days to rest my brain in between.

          • 0 avatar
            HeeeeyJake

            Derek,

            Thanks for the bit of candor. I, for one, and I know I’m not alone, appreciate how the current TTAC staff has been able to transition since BS’s departure.

            There’s enough good content on this site written in the journalist’s style that some raw-ish narrative is always welcome in my book.

            Carry on!

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    A V6 powered Laredo obviously isn’t going to behave in the Silverback-gorilla-in-heat manner that the SRT does…

    I love these cars but with a price tag like the SRT8s carry, most of the owners will be Silverback’s on Viagra.

    For us plebeians we should remember that with the 8-speed the V6 is now as fast as a regular Hemi was when saddled with the 5 speed.

  • avatar
    mikey

    I just went over to the “Build your Jeep” site. I went for the interior upgrade,and the trailer package. I also went for the deep cherry red.

    It came in a just a little north of 70K, before tax! I’m with “Zackman” Too much GM blood running through my veins. I get a enough of a guilt twinge, with my 5 year old Mustang.

    Though I do like this version of the Grand Cherokee.

  • avatar
    tonycd

    Wish I agreed with you and disagreed with Ehrlich about the limitations of Earth’s resources. But I’m delighted to agree that Chrysler is building some very exciting vehicles. Hope they can bake some reliability into ‘em.

    • 0 avatar
      jimbob457

      I remember meeting and talking to Erlich shortly after his famous book came out. The relatively simple truth about resource base depletion, technological progress and product substitution was too complex for his sad, simple mind to grasp.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      There will come a point that resources will get sufficiently scarce that things like mining asteroids will become cost effective. Or solar panels on everyone’s roofs. We have the technology to do that NOW, it’s just cheaper to get it all out of the ground locally.

      As I like to say, the neat thing about oil is the more it costs, the more of it there is. At $20/bbl nobody bothered with the South Dakota oil fields, at $80/bbl the place is booming.

      As for standards of living, more people live better now than ever before in history. And that includes the American middle class. We just spend far more time whining about it.

      • 0 avatar
        jimbob457

        Just to nitpick. The Bakken shale is part of the Williston basin in North Dakota. Wellhead prices there are currently closer to $100 USD per barrel than $80.

        ‘Fracking’ for so-called ‘tight’ oil is a combination of several technologies which include ultra cheap computing power. It allows one, essentially, to create one’s very own oil or gas reservoir. It has opened up an entirely new resource base – possibly even larger than the pre-existing one. In effect, we are back to 1929 in terms of resource base.

        No one really knows how much crude oil prices would need to fall in order to stop ‘fracking’. It is likely a moving target, and it is moving down rather than up as oil and gas producers learn more about how to use their new technology. OPEC is going to have to slash prices, and soon, in order to find out.

        My guess is that there is much more of the stuff than many think. The CEO of Pioneer, a large independent producer, says the Permian basin alone has over 30 billion barrels of recoverable ‘tight’ oil. The corporate planning department of Exxon-Mobil predicts that North America will be self-sufficient in the production of liquid hydrocarbons by 2020. I used to work in a direct predecessor of that shop. Believe me, they may not always be right when predicting the future (who is?), but they are most certainly not given to flights of fancy.

      • 0 avatar
        niky

        At $20 a barrel, it costs more to pump it out than you’ll get for selling it. At $60, it’s just about break even. At $80, it’s nowhere near as profitable as Middle East oil was in the 70′s, but it’s good enough.

        Them shale wells don’t stay productive very long, though.

        • 0 avatar
          jimbob457

          The ‘tight’ oil and gas decline curve is freakishly fast if you just leave them alone. Your self-created reservoir is extremely porous and permeable, but small. So, to keep production levels high, you have to go back in and build more reservoir.

          A lot of people are quoting your $60 number.

          • 0 avatar
            niky

            I believe it’s the target given by the established companies that they say signals to them to continue operating existing rigs.

            We’ll see how Brent does now that WTI isn’t bottlenecked due to lack of transport. Right now, both are holding steady at over $100 a barrel. I expect more people are going to start investing in American oil by the end of this year. I don’t think speculators want either measure to drop below the magic $100 mark.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    I had a 2002 Limited with the HO V8. This one vehicle came closest to meeting every one of my automotive needs. Good-looking, fast, every option Chrysler offered in 2002, utilitarian, didn’t care if it was on or off road, it was equally self-assured on any surface. One of the few vehicles that made me sad to give up, but driving 40-50K miles a year at 11-14mpg was absolutely killing me. Gas was more the the payment every month. I know the SRT8 is my old Limited squared, but I also know the purchase price is only the entrance fee.

    ” …a bunch of spoiled, upper-middle class brats” This is hilarious, it’s been my experience that being a brat knows no class

  • avatar

    Good review. I believe Jeep has dropped the “8″ from the “SRT” designation for 2014. Notwithstanding its flaws, namely a harsh ride on account of the run-flats and a serious appetite for premium, the SRT is an astounding value. The Germans are peddling Cayennes, X5MS and AMG ML63s with the same flaws for roughly twice the price. Sure the interiors are slightly nicer, and perhaps the ride is slightly smoother, but that’s a significant premium.

    The Laredo configured GCs, however, are were the real value is. For mid-30s out the door, you get a comfortable and quick SUV with probably the best infotainment system out there at the moment.

  • avatar
    08Suzuki

    Not just ill-prepared, but also physically unlikely in the case of a zombie apocalypse. Either way, extremely excellent article – this is what I think of when I think of TTAC.

    Oh, and CarMatcher brought up a good point – I guess this technically isn’t even a Jeep anymore, but an SRT now?

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    “…or if you were to line up against someone on a north Georgia drag strip.”

    Hmmm, sounds to me like someone who’s lookin’ to whup some North Georgia Cadillac-butt

  • avatar

    Like the X6M, these humongo-power luxury SUVs are like a reincarnation of the easily-forgotten full size muscle cars of the mid ’60s and very early ’70s.

    Cars like the 427 Impala or the 300 Hurst. They’re not as fast as smaller performance cars, but they’re not trying to be all-out speed machines. They’re their own niche.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Most passers-by don’t know if you’re in this SRT (cost $?) or the base model V-6 Laredo with a body kit. That’s always been my issue with the SRT GC model.

    $63K before options, and you’re already way into premium SUV land, where this thing is outclassed by 20 years of historical bad reliability and a pretty basic badge.

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      Huh?

      Try listening to one idle at a stop light or take off. “Most passers-by” will get the point REAL quick. Also the visual indications such as the larger exhaust, SRT specific wheels, brakes, hood, and fascias are pretty different from the Laredo model.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Okay, so car guys standing at a long stop light will notice it’s an SRT. Everyone else won’t.

        Still doesn’t fix the historical bad reliability, badge, and resale values.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          Supposed history of bad reliability? Resale? Land Rover products have shown us that means precisely nothing in this category.

          Don’t fool yourself, Jeep sells a ton of JGCs and will make or break their target on the SRTs because they are top notch compared to the competition at a bargain price.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            LR products are unreliable, yes. BUT they have a very high average income buyer (~$250K IIRC), and a brand to support snobbery.

            Jeep has a much more modest income buyer on average, and doesn’t have the badge.

            The Limited or Overland, fine. This, no.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    I agree with your cornucopian philosophy, and thanks for another great review.

    I always admire the rumble of an SRT8 when it goes by.

  • avatar
    shelvis

    Wow! A bunch of spoiled, upper-middle class brats think that warnings about consumption are alarmist? How surprising!

  • avatar
    Beerboy12

    I like the idea that such vehicles exist, I really do. But. The expression “more money than brains” comes to mind and me, personally, the novelty would wear off fast, especially at the gas pump. Plus I seem to spend my life stuck behind such monstrosities on the twisty bits that are so common and such fun out here in the Pacific North West. Frustrating when the only chance you have to get passed them is on the straights and they typically go blasting off on those…

  • avatar
    bucksnort

    Does this thing have any off road capability at all? A standard GJ does reasonably well off road on everything but the big rocks.

    From the photos, the ground clearance, wheels, and tires, would would indicate pot holes in the mall parking lot might be its limit.

    I would even question its usefulness in the winter. Does the awd system have a snow mode?

    For the money one could get a used Challenger SRT8 for the paved roads and a Wrangler for off road and winter.

    GCH

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      “Does the awd system have a snow mode?”

      Is that a common feature on modern vehicles? I seriously don’t know.
      It certainly would need a set of winter tires with more sidewall and less width. But other than that, it would probably work great after the nannies are shut down. If there’s no way to prevent electronic interference on loose surfaces, you could just yank a fuse or two.

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      Yes it does have a “snow” mode.

      Track
      Sport
      Auto
      Snow
      Tow

      That’s what the drive select knob by the launch control button has settings for the AWD system.

  • avatar
    rpn453

    I don’t understand the purpose of launch control in this vehicle. Isn’t it AWD? Is it really possible to light up all four tires to the point that you’re losing time? I’ve been in 4WD diesel trucks that were faster than this thing and a good bit of 4-wheel spin off the line doesn’t hurt a thing.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      The launch control acts as a trans-brake letting you effectively launch the vehicle with the engine up into its powerband (3000rpm) rather than off the torque converter stall speed which is probably less than 2000rpm.

      Because it has AWD, it can make better use of the power because it has the traction of all four wheels, so launch control lets the driver put more of it down instantly than they normally would be able to without it.

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        Thanks, I didn’t expect the TC on this to have such a low stall speed.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          I’m not sure exactly what it is on the JCSRT, but on my Charger R/T I can’t stall it past 2000rpm without the car moving on me with full brakes applied.

          With the stock tires, it wouldn’t matter much if I could due to a lack of traction anyway. With drag radials however, launch control would significantly improve the times. The best 60′ I’ve ever been able to get out of it was a 1.99x, but it’ll run the quarter in 13.70 @ 102mph.

          • 0 avatar
            nrd515

            My Challenger R/T seems to be about the same as your car, no shock there. The best 60′ foot time was, I think, 1.87, and the ET on that launch was my best ever, 13.34@105. That run was the only one out of like a half dozen that day where everything went right. Since upgrading the exhaust and changing to an SRT air intake with a drop in AFE ProDry S filter, the car is definitely quicker and faster, but, with the OEM tires, much less consistent than it was bone stock, where it ran a best of 13.55@103+, and 13.50′s and /60′s were really easy to do. On a cold day, where it really likes it to be, it wants to spin at the hit, and then again, right at the 1-2 shift. A friend’s car, which is pretty much identical to mine in every way, is pretty close to cracking the 12′s with a tune and a converter change. I’m tempted to get one of those converters, it resolves the oddball driveline “lash” too, which I think is the converter being slow to unlock. It’s only really quicker with better tires, of course. With the OEMs, it’s only a little quicker than my car is, with decent launches being extremely difficult to do. I think his best at Milan is a 13.03, with the converter, catback, SRT airbox with an AFE filter, and the diablo tune. So close.

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      The purpose of the button is to prepare the vehicle for maximum acceleration.

      AWD goes into 70% rear, 30% front mode.

      The VVT on the cam is advanced.

      Suspension is “stiffened”.

      8 speed shifts faster.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I would have to say that this is the nicest looking Jeep ever made, whether in SRT8 form or not. This vehicle will remain more of less as it is for quite some time.

    Here the SRT Grand Cherokee is about $75 000, which sounds expensive, but here isn’t to bad. I had a look at one in Darwin the other day. Very nice indeed.

    Here in Australia (in the Northern Territory) fuel is about $1.55AUD per litre. Or on current exchange rates about $5.00USD per gallon (diesel is about 10% more).

    I read a comment that this so called excessive style of vehicle is in ‘America’ only isn’t quite true. We have had muscle cars here since the 60s, cheap performance. Verging on unpracticality is the Holden Maloo ute here in Australia.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      Premium Fuel here in the eastern end of the Greater Toronto Area is around 1.34 with reg at 1.25. 3.78 litres to an American Gallon= 4.90 CDN. One Loony will buy you .98 of a Green Back. So were sitting pretty close the the magic 5 dollar mark. Right now I believe we have some of cheapest gas prices in eastern Canada.

      With the huge incentives, big pick ups are flying off the lots. It seems folks are comfortable with 5 dollar a gallon gas.

      My point being, if your cool with putting $5 a gallon gas in your 70k Jeep. Why the f not?

  • avatar
    AJ

    That is a nice Jeep. I can see having one in my garage someday. But not an SRT version. Thanks for the review as it’s fun to dream. :)

    And last, Julian Simon was the man!

  • avatar
    pgcooldad

    Nice to know the owners of Chrysler dig it, as in Lapo Elkann numerous JGC’s. My personal favourite being the white one with the interesting rear bumper sticker.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=lapo+elkann+jeep&rlz=1C1WZPD_enUS414US415&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=zgr3UcLbEIO4yQG04oH4Bg&ved=0CDwQsAQ&biw=1366&bih=643#imgdii=_

  • avatar
    kosmo

    Thank goodness they haven’t given the Durango the SRT treatment. I’ll have to live with the R/T version, which is probably a much better compromise in the long run. Not to mention a lot less expensive.

  • avatar
    Joires

    Stopped by TAC to read their review of the new Impala, and I can’t seem to find it. Hmmm, must have lost in a server crash or something. I’m sure they will repost it in no time.

  • avatar
    VenomV12

    The Grand Cherokee is a great vehicle until you sit in the seats. Some of the most terrible, uncomfortable seats I have ever sat in in my life, front or back. The seats in the 300 and Charger are okay, I don’t understand why they are so bad in the GC?

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      It never ceases to amaze me how subjective interior comfort can be. I find the seats in the JGC to be quite comfortable, even on long trips. Maybe it has to do with the whole 95th percentile thing.

    • 0 avatar
      nrd515

      Weird, I had a ’99 Grand Cherokee, and the seats made me get rid of it, but I’ve driven and rode in a friend’s ’12, and I like the seats fine.

  • avatar
    HiFlite999

    $260 / $4 per gallon = 65 gallons. 500 miles / 65 gallons = 7.7 mpg!

    Must be a modern record for a road test.

    Not a good one …


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