We’ve been lucky nowadays to pretty much have any option imaginable in automotive world. SUV’s are becoming more and more popular, and as they are taking over the market, primarily due to their safety, practicality and off road capabilities, there are also more extreme options available. So now besides already proven vehicles like Range Rover, there is also SVR version or if you want something cheaper, there is Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 or maybe pricier BMW X5 M.
But what do these cars bring to the table. Do they offer everything from both worlds or do they sacrifice a lot for speed?
We are going to resolve this automotive dispute once and for all in this article.
Fast SUV sounds like a very good idea on the paper, but in real world things do not really look that promising.
Now here is the first problem. As you might already know, SUV’s cost a lot of money, now when you add performance engine to the equation, price climbs drastically. If you were getting competitive performance vehicle it wouldn’t be such a bad idea, but you’re not.
Let’s take a look at the fastest SUV on the planet Bentley Bentayga. Acceleration wise, for 2.5 ton SUV, it doesn’t get better than this. Its 12 cylinder engine pushes it to 60 mph in just 4 seconds, which is phenomenal for house on wheels. When it comes to maximum speed, it is just shy of 190 mph. So, if fast SUV can match performance car in anything, it is acceleration.
This is where things start to go downhill. Their bulky bodies, ground clearance and weight simply do not allow fast cornering. Now Porsche Macan, or for that matter Alfa Romeo Stelvio outperform most of the bigger SUVs, but still, they cannot compete with your basic performance sedan, it is as simple as that. Physics are simply not on their side.
Off road capabilities
This is basically where performance SUV’s suffer the most. When manufacturers put performance engine under the bonnet, they have to tinker with suspension. They have to make it much stiffer to accommodate extra horse power, and this has huge impact on off road capabilities. In our tests, none of the fast SUVs, even though some performed decent, were true off road vehicles, and that is the major drawback in these types of vehicles.
It all comes down to your needs. If you want something to get your heart pumping that you can also take off road and for a bit, fast SUV is the way to go. However keep in mind that you will have to spend a decent amount of money. On the other hand if you want more space and performance without any off road capabilities, you should probably go for performance estate like Audi RS6. It is a car that will outperform any SUV and it is good value for the money.