When asked why he wanted to climb Everest, George Mallory was alleged to have said, “Because it’s there!” A popular adolescent joke pondered why a dog ‘wash’ his privates. Because he can (ba-dum-tss). And why do you think the Americans were the first to land on the moon? Umm, because the Soviets were already in space.
But you get the gist. When you can do something desirable, why not do it?
The Trackhawk upgrade to the 2018 Jeep Cherokee puts an unprecedented amount of power into the driver’s hands (and feet). Why? Because its manufacturers can! It’s crazy. It’s unnecessary. And there are drivers who love it.
How much power? You’d best sit down in the power 8-way adjustable leather ensconced front seat with driver memory before reading further. The 6.2-litre eight-cylinder supercharged engine achieves a bowel-loosening 707 horsepower and 645 lb-ft of torque.
The preceding sentence was proofread.
So, it tows 7,200 lb without breaking a sweat. For perspective, consider: the famous French wrestler André the Giant weighed 520 lb at the height (ba-dum-TSS) of his career. So, the Trackhawk could effortlessly haul 13.845 Andrés the Giant. Pretty much anywhere. Ostensibly the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is the Hellcat of off-roading. (The seats are even described as Demonic Red.)
Don’t be fooled by its weight and dimensions. Usain Bolt achieved just 44.72kph at his top speed. A polar bear can sprint 40kph but you don’t see them getting any running shoe contracts.
As you’d expect from such a powerlifter, the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk requires a great deal of protein. While it doesn’t burp when you fill it up, you’d expect so.
EnerGuide, the government’s energy consumption numbers, which measures in ideal conditions (aka not traffic), lowballs ratings of 20.9 L/100km in the city, 13.8 on the highway and 17.7 combined. But with such blatant temptation constantly hovering, we wonder whether anyone could achieve such self-disciplined numbers in their daily commutes. I sure couldn’t for the week I had it.
What’s that saying? Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
It gets better. This tester — should we say testoster? — was pimped six ways from sunroof (dual-pane and panoramic of course). Just a few of the wondrous baubles that my wife loved included: a rear-seat DVD entertainment centre with private headphones in case you don’t want to drown the kids out with the engine; an 18-speaker Harman/Kardon high performance audio system with an 825-watt amplifier (for more perspective, the Vox amplifiers the Beatles used on stage at Shea Stadium, their biggest concert ever, were 725 watts weaker); leather-wrapped almost everything in the interior, from seats to door trim panels (it’s a rolling dominatrix’s bordello); and a list of safety features long enough to make all that power-caked temptation even more tempting.
Base price: $110,845
As driven (extremely hard): $130,945