The Grand Cherokee SRT is Jeep ’s real hero car, and the only one to compete effectively with the super-SUV benchmark from Porsche . The Jeep ’s drastic SRT makeover is arguably the most effective across the Chrysler range by blending the huge Hemi V-8’s torque with the sure-footed and quite advanced Grand Cherokee platform.
A change across the board from “SRT8” to “SRT” for all the performance trims prepares the range for its next generation of super and turbocharged SRT models - with forced induction making the SRT6, SRT4 etc cylinder counts much less meaningful.
The SRT conversion makes the Grand Cherokee one of the most entertaining models out of Auburn Hills, with all the track attitude and road muscle of the Viper but far fewer tradeoffs in daily driving.
As almost a totally distinct model from the Grand Cherokee range, the SRT version is new for 2014 with the latest interior tech upgrades, a new eight-speed auto transmission, and the tasteful headlight LED accents that were new this year on the base models.
Combined with the menacing nose graphic of the Grand Cherokee SRT, the additional LED lights update the nose appearance nicely. A black lower bumper shroud makes the SRT seem mean even with the lights off, with its 20-inch wheels and giant tires looking very prominent from all angles.
The real news with this latest Jeep is new launch control programming for the cutting-edge autobox that should offer an even quicker sprint than the last model’s 5.1-second rush to 60 mph. Smoothness, economy, and tow ratings are also all up across the board, making this Grand Cherokee SRT quite an appealing prospect for hot-rod SUV shoppers.
Will the loss of the "8" on the badge hurt its street cred versus the Range Rover Sport? Is the price premium and five-seat layout a problem versus the Ford Explorer Sport ?
Click past the jump for all the latest images and details of the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT.