Here are 5 of the fastest SUV's in existence
Delving into the realms of incredibly speedy sport utility vehicles that deserve a soccer mom shout-out.
1. Hennessey x Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
Credit: Auto Evolution
Jeep's Grand Cherokee SUV was victimised by for the sake of its treatment from legendary performance division Hennessey - who went to town on the five-seater. Modifications that would give any plastic surgery company a run for their money include a Hellcat-supercharged 6.2L V8 Hemi engine - which, after being fiddled with, puts out 1,012 bhp @ 6,500 rpm, and a monumental 969 lb ft of torque. To put that in context, that's more power than a Bugatti Veyron. And if that wasn't crazy enough, the all-american monster of a car has been said to satisfy 0-60 miles per hour in an unfathomable 2.6 seconds.
And what's more - the family-orientated vehicle will do a 1/4 mile in around about 10 seconds - consistently. Prices of the base model of the Trackhawk start at around £60,000. But if you're willing to take up the offer for some street-legal satisfaction, you're going to have to set aside something in the region of £100,000 for the HPE1000 variant- or at least, until prices are confirmed by Hennessey. Perhaps I could tempt you with their HPE1200? Long story short, it involves a lot more power and a lot more money.
2. T1 Racing Development x Nissan Patrol
Credit: Youtube | 1320Video
Fans of The Grand Tour will certainly remember this Porsche 918-decimator, in all of its 1,900 bhp glory. Although it may come across as a rather vanilla-lookng car, (quite literally in this colour) this Patrol is essentially a Nissan GT-R wearing a fancy dress outfit designed to look like any old Patrol. T1 Racing Development tinkered with the VR38 that hailed from the GT-R and squeezed out all they could, leaving a 4.1-litre powerhouse to play with. Challenging this epitome of sleepers wasn't one of Hammond's proudest moments, as you'll realise in the video below.
Despite its unassuming exterior nature, underneath the skin of the SUV holds a different story. The arsenal of extensive modifications features a modified GT-R transmission, hubs, carbon ceramic brakes, axles and rear sub frame - all of which were sourced from the Japanese sports car. And the GT-R influence doesn't stop there, with familiar components finding their way inside too - the gauge cluster, steering wheel and center console were all donated by its highly-acclaimed family member.
3. Tesla Model X
Credit: Wikimedia Common
Now, it wouldn't be fair to leave out any of our electric friends from the list, would it? Taking Elon Musk out of the equation, the Model X is arguably the face of Tesla - with its smug falcon doors and effortlessly sleek looks, the speed factor is the gravy for this mid-size luxury SUV. Equipped with a 4WD drivetrain and enough room to seat seven people comfortably, the Model X steps up to the mark in the dynamic but demanding SUV market. This may seem to tick the mental boxes of anyone deciding which family car to buy - however you're going to have to pluck at least £82,700 out of thin air for the entry-level model, which puts out a respectable 553 bhp. That being said, it will perform a song and dance for you on request.
The electrified machine is also capable of reaching 371 miles range on a single charge, as stated by Tesla, and the ability to recharge up to 142 miles in 15 minutes at any Supercharger location. On the subject of numbers, the Model X boasts a 17-inch touchscreen to cater for any in-car entertainment needs of its occupants, along with being at the top end of cars with a five-car safety rating. To 'add' to the numerical nonsense, the 2,500kg Model X's will hit 60mph in 4.4secs - not exactly something to dismiss.
4. Lamborghini Urus
With an expectation to follow in the footsteps of the company that makes some of the fastest cars on the planet, the Urus had to set an example in being the modern flagship SUV of Lamborghini. In all honesty, I'm sold on it. With lines that resemble the very essence of the Italian nameplate and a look that is a testament to its designers, the Urus sits pretty among pretty much any other car that is capable of seating a family. Performance isn't compromised either - the large Lambo still maintains a top speed of 189.5 mph, courtesy of its 4.0-litre V8 which consequently produces a modest 641 bhp.
But as you'd expect from a premium manufacturer such as Lamborghini, there is no 'cheap' alternative - the base price starts from somewhere in the ballpark of £167,000 if you're attracted to the stock plain Jane variant of the Urus. And as we know, a lot of automakers rack up their profits through the costly optional extras that are on offer. Having said this, if you are actually considering the Urus for your next purchase, you've probably got enough to add that personal touch, without breaking the bank.
5. Toyota Land Speed Cruiser
Credit: New Atlas
Awarded 'Fastest Production SUV' in 2016 in a bid to beat the land speed record for a production car, the Land Speed Cruiser adds a new meaning to what the legendary Land Cruiser is renowned for. Its diversification into a high-speed people carrier was Toyota's pitch at the 2017 SEMA show - a prestigious annual automotive gathering that aims to showcase the best in performance cars. Toyota pulled off their pledge too - the soccer mom and expedition-acclimatised fan favourite in off-roading completed the trial with a top speed of 230 mph. That's pretty out of character for a car that is used to tackling wild terrain at much slower speeds around the world.
With the Land Speed Cruiser being so heavily reliant upon what's underneath the hood, Twin Garrett turbos under the hood do this car the justice it deserves. A fully built 5.7-liter Toyota V8 puts down power via a custom ATI transmission, which all sits somewhere within the lowered chassis - reworked to help accommodate the suspension and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. The array of modifications contributed to stealing the title from its previous rightful owner - a 740 bhp, V12 Brabus GLK which debuted at the Dubai Auto Show in 2009. If this isn't the definition of a sleeper, I don't know what is.
That rounds up the list of larger-than-life yet super speedy SUV's - of course, there are many more existing and emerging SUVs that will soon replace the cars featured on this list.
Which is your favourite? Tell me why or why not in the comments!
- Ollie Funnell, Student Journalist, Coventry University