2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8

  • Article by: KEN CHESTER and JR. , Star Tribune Sales and Marketing
  • Updated: July 24, 2007 - 6:08 PM

Known worldwide for its capability, utility and distinctive style, the folks at Jeep introduce the quickest, most powerful Jeep ever, the Grand Cherokee SRT8.

Combining its Jeep heritage with balanced performance from Street & Racing Technology (SRT), the Grand Cherokee SRT8 easily becomes the ultimate performance sport-utility vehicle. As the first four-wheel-drive SRT vehicle, the Grand Cherokee SRT8 provides astonishing on-road and all-weather ability and power. The new Jeep SRT8 model boasts a zero-to-60 time of less than five seconds.

SRT's credo demands functional exterior enhancements that contribute to performance and resonate with the brand character. The SRT8's lowered, aggressive stance shows its unmistakable Jeep identity endowed with SRT DNA. Its front fascia makes use of aero improvements to reduce lift and drag, while providing sufficient airflow to cool the engine. The front fascia also helps increase brake system cooling through integrated air ducts.

In the rear, a unique fascia incorporates an aggressive center cutout to accommodate dual four-inch exhaust tips. Another functional enhancement is sill extensions to help create downforce.

The Grand Cherokee SRT8 is powered by a 6.1L HEMI V-8 engine. It's joined to the SRT-upgraded five-speed automatic transmission with adaptive electronic control and performance-tuned AutoStick driver-interactive manual control.

With a throaty exhaust note from the big block HEMI V-8, the SUV delivers a powerful, precise and responsive performance. This fun-to-drive vehicle will make one wonder if it is a sports car or an SUV.

SRT's influence on the Grand Cherokee SRT8 also extends to the SUV's ride and handling characteristics. The chassis setup is aimed at balanced performance with SRT-tuned dampers, unique sway bars and specially tailored spring rates and suspension bushings.

The ride height of the Grand Cherokee SRT8 is one inch lower than the standard Grand Cherokee, which in turn lowers aerodynamic drag as well as the center of gravity, and contributes to the vehicle's stability and aggressive stance.

Further contributing to its aggressive stance, the Grand Cherokee SRT8 is fitted with unique forged 20-inch five-spoke aluminum wheels shod with high-performance Goodyear W-rated four-season tires with run-flat capability.

The cabin of the SRT8 is distinguished by power-adjustable, deeply sculpted performance front seats, complete with uniquely patterned performance suede inserts to hold occupants during aggressive driving. Interior accents include a "carbon fiber" technical finish on the leather-wrapped steering wheel, instrument-panel brow and shift knob.

Full instrumentation includes a 180-mph speedometer, tachometer and temperature gauges, all trimmed with a unique blue accent. Oil pressure and temperature may be monitored through a specially configured display unit centrally located in the instrument panel.

Safety features include dual front airbags, front seat-mounted side-impact airbags, head curtain airbags, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock, brake assist, engine immobilizer, electronic stability control, tire pressure monitor, alarm system and automatic headlamp control. Optional safety features include a navigation system and rearview camera.

Quick Stats Engine: 6.1L HEMI V-8 with 420 hp and 420 lbs.-ft. of torque Transmission: Five-speed automatic with performance-tuned AutoStick driver-interactive manual control Towing capacity:3,500 lbs. EPA Fuel Economy: City: 12 Highway: 15 Starting MSRP: $40,105

By Ken Chester, Jr. Motor News Media Corporation
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