Update 4/8/21- Durango SRT Hellcat added.

This is a real dilemma if you’re a gear head. Maybe you are a spirited driver who has kids. Maybe you are a spirited driver who has kids and is always late because it literally takes the kids 2 hours to get dressed in the morning. Perhaps you live in a remote area, or on a dirt road, and maybe need a little more ground clearance. A truck is well…too trucky and you want space with a little luxury. Maybe you don’t even have kids, (lucky you, you get to just ‘walk’ out the door hassle-free in the morning) you just need some more space, comfortable space. But you want a fast-moving comfortable space. Sometimes a car won’t cut it in these situations.

All the sensible parts of the brain are telling you, get an SUV. The other part of the brain (probably the emotional part) says, “no, I don’t want to adult today I like my fast cars too much”. Why not have both. Check out these choices for a fast SUV.

What are your options for a performance or fast SUV?

  • Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat 710hp
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk 707hp
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT 475hp
  • Dodge Durango SRT 475hp
  • Ford Explorer Sport 365hp

Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat

Photo: Dodge.

There’s no stopping Dodge when it comes to dropping gigantic horsepower engines in vehicles. Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat is a fast SUV, topping our list with the most horsepower at 710 and 645 lb-ft of torque from the  Supercharged 6.2L HEMI® SRT Hellcat V8 engine. 0-60 mph is 3.5 seconds. Standard features include Launch Control with Launch Assist, SRT Performance Hood, 20×10 wheels, Brembo 6-piston front brake calipers, and paddle shifters.

Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT

The Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT is equipped with the 6.4L HEMI® V8 engine that puts out a very respectable 475 horsepower and 470lb-ft of torque. In layman’s terms, that’s very quick for an SUV. 0-60mph is achieved in 4.4 seconds. I was lucky enough to get to drive a 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT on the track at High Plains Raceway in Colorado as part of a media testing day. I can tell you, that the car surprised me. With it being an SUV I was expecting there to be substantial body roll and soft suspension. This was not the case. It does have a lowered ride height, which in turn reduces the center of gravity, therefore, better handling. The SRT has stiffer spring rates, anti-roll bars, and cambered wheels which all aid in better handling too. It does have a ‘Selec-Track’ ® system which is a dial on the center console that allows you to change the suspension set-up depending on the use; Auto, Sport, Tow, Track, and Snow. The SRT also comes with launch control and high-performance Brembo brakes.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk

fast SUV
Photo : FCA Media

If 475 hp isn’t enough, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is the ultimate SUV street sleeper. By sleeper, I mean it’s not going to be obvious there’s a 707hp supercharged HEMI® under the hood. 0-60 in 3.5 seconds. That is FASTER THAN A CHALLENGER HELLCAT! FCA say that the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is the “fastest SUV ever.. achieving the 1/4 mile in 11.6 seconds”. ¹

 
 
 
 

Dodge Durango SRT

fast SUV 3-rows
Photo: FCA Media

What if you need a 3rd row? The all-new Dodge Durango SRT will be arriving at dealerships in the fourth quarter of 2017. The 392 cubic inch HEMI® V8 has 475hp and delivers best-in-class towing capability at 8,600lbs.² The Durango gets a new SRT seven-mode driving system from comfort to track and everything in between. It also gets the 8-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission and tuned AWD system. Want a fast SUV but not quite as crazy as the Hellcat version, this one’s for you.

 
 
 

Ford Explorer Sport

fast SUV
Photo: Ford

Ford Explorer Sport and Platinum trim levels come with the 3.5L V6 Ecoboost (twin-turbocharged) engine, which puts it up at 365hp. Whilst it’s a little less than other fast SUVs mentioned, I chose to include the Explorer because 365hp is still more than other SUVs out there. The Explorer in the Sport trim level has sport-tuned independent front and rear suspension, along with a terrain management system. The vehicle also comes with a 6-speed SelectShift® automatic transmission.

Thinking about ordering one of these? Some of them will most likely only be available in small numbers or by special order. n.

¹”FCA US Media – 707-horsepower 2018 Jeep® Grand Cherokee Trackhawk: The Most Powerful and Quickest SUV Ever .” FCA, n.d. Web. 10 July 2017

²”FCA US Media – Press Kit: 2018 Dodge Durango SRT:Dodge Unleashes New 2018 Dodge Durango SRT.” Http://media.fcanorthamerica.com. FCA, n.d. Web. 10 July 2017