Pretty much anything can be called a sport-utility, even if the vehicle in question is about as sporty as a tricycle with two flat tires. The truth of the matter is that many SUVs are geared toward how many cup-holders and USB ports are onboard, not anything related to tire-burning acceleration and sharp handling that puts a smile on your face.
Granted, most SUV buyers aren’t looking to set hot-laps in their downtime from commuting, running errands, and getting kids to soccer practice. But it’s nice to know that vehicles exist that can accommodate all the trials – and cargo – of modern life, without sacrificing the thrill of driving.
We’ve compiled a list of some of the wildest, fastest, and most powerful SUVs on the planet. None of them are shrinking violets, that’s for certain, and a few are downright crazy in terms of price or (gasoline) drinking habits. But when it comes to combining stratospheric performance and sport-utility functionality, these machines are the best of the best.
1. Bentley Bentayga
The current king of all SUVs, the Bentley Bentayga has the power – and price-tag – that you expect from this storied British luxury brand. It helps that Bentley’s broad-shouldered styling translates so nicely to SUV proportions. The Bentayga truly looks like a Bentley, apart from a slightly bland set of tail-lamps. We know, we’re being fussy. Then again, with a starting price of $229,000, customers can be choosy when stepping foot into a Bentley showroom. A 600 horsepower twin-turbocharged W12 engine lurks behind that glitzy front grille, and it comes mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel-drive. Punch the gas, get pressed deep into the leather seats in the Bentayga’s posh cabin, and hold on; this SUV won’t stop going until it hits a top speed of 187 miles per hour.
Next: America brings muscle car power to the full-size SUV segment.