Chrysler smashes AMG with most powerful SUV

Germans losing the power race.

Chrysler has once again proven that when it comes to radically overpowered V8s, not even AMG can compete.

Since the introduction of its Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, Chrysler has owned the title of ‘world’s most powerful SUV’. But now it has usurped the Trackhawk with a phenomenal new Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat.

The naming convention isn’t subtle, nor is there anything conservative about the Durango SRT Hellcat’s styling. It features a deep two-piece front splitter to stabilise the front axle at speed, whilst the standard fog lights are binned and repurposed as additional cooling ports for the huge V8 engine.

At the rear of this performance SUV, there is an aerodynamically validated spoiler which can generate 180 kg of downforce at 290 kph.

The Durango SRT Hellcat rolls 20-inch wheels, with huge Brembo brakes turning in unison. To confidently decelerate a vehicle of this size and performance, Dodge sourced 400 mm brake discs up front and 350 mm items for the rear axle.

Powering the Durango SRT Hellcat is a 6.2-litre V8, boosted by a 2.4-litre capacity supercharger, capable of spinning up to 14 600 rpm. The overall boost pressure is relatively low, at only 0.8-bar, but the supercharger is a large capacity unit and helps the Durango to 530 kW of peak power, which is a smidge more than the Jeep Trackhawk.

AMG does not have a rival SUV which can touch the Durango SRT Hellcat’s engine performance. Chrysler engineers have attempted to make the best of attempting to control 530 kW in an SUV application. Compression damping is increased by 20% to better resists bodyroll, which should compensate for the higher corner entry speeds of this Durango SRT Hellcat

For a vehicle of such outlandish statistics, one of the Durango SRT Hellcat’s most astonishing numbers regards its utility.

Chrysler has not altered the towing capacity of its latest high-performance SUV, which means you can now have a 530 kW all-terrain vehicle, capable of towing 3 950 kg. Should make recovering other 4x4 owners an absolute breeze when things go awry in a dune field.

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