We continue to be surprised Dodge's mid-sized Durango isn't more popular than it is. With three rows of seating and optional V8 power in not-quite-full-size body, we feel like the Durango should be a hit among drivers looking for a family vehicle that can tow. But we guess a vehicle is bound to be under-appreciated when its showroom neighbour is a value leader like the lighter-duty Journey crossover, which is a hard-enough worker when properly equipped.
In any event, for 2017, Dodge's largest SUV gains a new GT trim level to replace last year's Limited as the volume seller, and it gets what its maker calls a sportier, monochromatic exterior appearance package.
Also new is an Anodized Platinum appearance package for the Citadel trim, which includes two-tone Nappa leather seating, soft-touch, hand-wrapped instrument panel, gunmetal interior trim, and platinum chrome trim inside and out.
The R/T model gets that soft-touch dash as an option, and this year, any Durango with the 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen gets a feature that allows a view of what's being towed through the backup camera. Dodge says that last item works regardless of what gear is selected, which makes it sound like it would work at speed; realistically, this will be a handy feature for when it's time to hitch up.
A Blacktop trim returns as an option for GT and R/T models, and comes with new 20-inch black wheels, grille, headlight bezels and badging. A Brass Monkey package is similar, but brings bronze wheels, and black grille and badges.
Dodge has left the Durango's fundamentals alone, however, so this SUV still starts out with a 3.6L Pentastar V6 that puts 293 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque through an eight-speed automatic transmission. The option is a 5.7L V8 good for 360 h and 390 lb-ft.
Both engines come with AWD, but only the V8 gets low-range gearing.
Fuel consumption ratings are 12.8/9.5 L/100 km (city/highway) for V6 models, and 16.7/10.7 L/100 km with the V8.
Standard kit in the base SXT trim includes a gauge cluster with seven-inch customizable display, seven-passenger seating with 50/50 split-folding third row and 60/40 split second row, air conditioning with three-zone temperature control, LED reading lights, premium cloth seats, leather-trimmed steering wheel, Bluetooth, six-speaker stereo with five-inch touchscreen infotainment, 12-way power driver's seat, paddle shifters, tilt-and-telescopic steering, 18-inch satin carbon wheels, automatic headlights, body-colour mirrors and door handles, bright grille and roof rails, LED taillights, heated side mirrors, and fog lights.
GT trim adds a 115-volt power outlet, dual USB charging ports, 20-inch wheels, auto-dimming driver's side mirror, black headlight trim, grille and front and rear fascias, dual bright exhaust tips, LED daytime running lights, mirror-mounted turn signal repeaters, heated steering wheel, rear park assist with backup camera, remote start, leather-faced seats, heated front and second-row seats, 10-way power front passenger seat, lighted vanity mirrors, and garage door opener. GT trim deletes the roof rack standard in the SXT.
R/T trim gets the V8 motor and low-range gearing, a nine-speaker amplified stereo, 20-inch granite crystal wheels, low-beam HID headlights with automatic high beam control, full-length floor console, full-size spare tire, leather trimmed door panels, 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment with navigation, performance-tuned steering and suspension with rear load levelling, power tailgate, power steering column, rain-sensing wipers, Nappa leather seating with front-seat ventilation and a 12-way front passenger seat.
Citadel trim also builds on the GT and adds many of the same conveniences as the R/T, but sticks with the V6 and single-speed AWD transfer case. It differs mainly in its inclusion of a sunroof, which is optional in R/T.
As of this writing, Dodge hasn't announced 2017 Durango pricing.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed