Make us your home page
Instagram

The Daily Drivers: 2014 Dodge Durango R/T

You've no doubt seen Will Ferrell's Anchorman character Ron Burgundy in commercials for the 2014 Dodge Durango, humorously praising, among other things, the glove box — "It goes on for inches!" — of the large SUV. Dodge has now given the Durango a midcycle refresh, and there's much more to like about it than the glove box.

Appearance: When the Durango was redesigned for the 2011 model year, it gained a muscle car's bearing. For 2014, that look gets bolder with new fascias and a tweak to Dodge's cross-hair grille. The headlights acquire LED bling, and tail lamps now span the rear of the vehicle and are the same Racetrack ribbon you see on the Challenger and Charger. Sharp. The Durango sits high, like a truck, and shorter drivers might find getting in and out a challenge. (Says Lyra: Ladies, it's not the best car to be driving in heels. It's a long step to the ground.) Our tester, the R/T, came with 20-inch alloy wheels, body-color accents and chrome-tipped exhausts.

Performance: The sporty R/T trim comes with a 5.7-liter V-8 Hemi, an engine that produces one of our favorite exhaust notes. (It's very macho; Burgundy would approve.) The engine has 360 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque, but somehow seems civilized in comparison to some of the other Hemis we've driven — maybe because of the Durango's 5,100-pound curb weight? (Still, acceleration is steady and quick.) The estimated mpg isn't ideal, but if you're buying a large SUV with a V-8, you know that before making a down payment. (Dodge's 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 is also available.) New to the model for 2014 is Chrysler's 8-speed automatic transmission, which is one of our favorites. The rear-wheel-drive Durango (AWD is an option) has a surprisingly comfortable ride, even with the R/T's sport suspension, and steering is responsive and well-assisted. Need to tow? The Durango is rated up to 7,400 pounds, which is excellent for an SUV. Also impressive: It has trailer-sway damping to keep things under control, and a rear load-leveling suspension as well as auto-leveling headlights.

Interior: The Durango seats up to seven in its roomy cabin, but our tester had the six-passenger configuration. The second row had the captain's chairs, leaving a convenient pass-through to the third row, which is spacious enough to seat adults in a pinch. (But why are the second-row cup holders on the floor? Careful.) The R/T gets plush leather seats with bright-red logos and red stitching. We're fans of Dodge's UConnect system, which is one of the more intuitive systems on the market with its tablet-style display and 8.4-inch touchscreen. The 7-inch screen nestled in the instrument cluster also provides plenty of vehicle information.

Our 3 favorites

Peter Couture

Safety: Standard and optional features that include forward collision warning and rear cross-path detection.

Style: The SUV as muscle car.

LEDs: There are 192 individual ones in the seamless rear taillight.

Lyra Solochek

Third-row access: Pass-through area with a rubber step makes it easy to get to the back row.

Gamers' delight: Hook up the gaming console and play on the built-in screens.

Towing: 7,400 pounds plus safety systems.

The bottom line: The Dodge Durango is a stylish and comfortable large SUV. Whether you need to haul the family or your recreational toys, it's up to the task. It also comes in enough trim levels to satisfy most tastes and budgets.









2014 Dodge Durango R/T

Price: $29,795 base start, $46,065 as tested

Powertrain: 5.7-liter V-8 Hemi, 8-speed automatic transmission, RWD

Horsepower: 360

Torque: 390 pound-feet

Curb weight: 5,133 pounds

Dimensions

in inches:

Wheelbase, 119.8

Length, 199.8

Width, 75.8

Height, 71.6

Seats: 6 (up to 7 depending on seating configuration)

Fuel economy:

14 miles per gallon city, 23 mpg highway

Towing capacity: 7,400 pounds

Safety features: airbags, electronic stability control, parking assist, rearview camera, trailer-sway damping, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-path detection, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning and mitigation

Website: dodge.com/durango

The Daily Drivers: 2014 Dodge Durango R/T 11/27/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 27, 2013 6:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Trigaux: Halfway through 2017, a closer look at six drivers of the Tampa Bay economy

    Business

    We're nearly halfway through 2017 already, a perfect time to step back from the daily grind of business and ask: How's Tampa Bay's economy doing?

    Is there one theme or idea that captures the Tampa Bay brand? Not really but here's one possibility. The fun-loving annual Gasparilla "Invasion" of Tampa is captured in this photo of 
The Jose Gasparilla loaded with pirates of Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla on its way this past January to the Tampa Convention Center. In the future a vibrant downtown Tampa or St. Petersburg may be the better theme. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  2. Will new laws protect condo owners from apartment conversions and rogue associations?

    Real Estate

    Danny Di Nicolantonio has lived in St. Petersburg's Calais Village Condominums for 33 years. Annoyed at times by the actions, or inaction, of the condo board and property managers, he has complained to the state agency that is supposed to investigate.

    That has left him even more annoyed.

    A bill passed by the Florida Legislature would affect places like The Slade in Tampa's Channelside district, where cCondominium owners have battled a plan to convert homes into apartments.
[Times file photo]
  3. Walmart opens first Pinellas County in-house training academy

    Retail

    Seminole — It had all the hallmarks of a typical graduation: robe-clad graduates marching in to Pomp and Circumstance, friends and family packed together under a sweltering tent and a lineup of speakers encouraging the graduates to take charge of their future.

    New Walmart Academy graduates are congratulated Thursday morning by associates during a graduation ceremony at the Walmart store, 10237 Bay Pines Boulevard, St. Petersburg. The Walmart location is one of the company's training academies where managers complete a one week retail course. David Shultz and Richard Sheehan, both from St. Petersburg, get high fives from the crowd.
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  4. Lawsuit: Florida contractor fakes death to dodge angry homeowners

    Human Interest

    SEMINOLE — For weeks, Glenn Holland, 67, crawled out of bed before the sun rose to look for a dead man.

    Last year Glenn and Judith Holland said they paid a contractor thousands of dollars to renovate their future retirement home in Seminole. But when they tried to move in on Dec. 14, they said the home was in shambles and uninhabitable. They sent a text message to contractor Marc Anthony Perez at 12:36 p.m. looking for answers. Fourteen minutes later, they got back this text: "This is Marc's daughter, dad passed away on the 7th of December in a car accident. Sorry." Turns out Perez was still alive. Now the Hollands are suing him in Pinellas-Pasco circuit court. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  5. Owners to level Port Richey flea market but may rebuild

    Public Safety

    PORT RICHEY — The owners of the recently shuttered USA Flea Market have agreed to demolish all structures on the property, leaving open the possibility of rebuilding the weekend shopping attraction, according to Pasco County officials.

    Pasco County officials shut down the USA Flea Market after it received hundreds of citations for health and code violations.