First Look at the 2019 Dodge Durango SRT

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Check out the Dodge Durango SRT

The Dodge Durango is the dinosaur of the SUV market, a truck-like SUV that doesn’t even attempt great fuel economy or stellar safety ratings. This Dodge Durango is the third generation, having received some much-needed upgrades back in 2014. It comes in base model SXT, GT, Citadel, R/T and SRT.

There are three rows of seating on all but the base model and three powertrain options for the Durango, but the SRT has a powertrain and features of its own. The SRT model, added in 2018 as a performance vehicle disguised as a family mover, is a sporty, almost truck-like SUV that is architecturally a mix between the Dodge Challenger SRT and the Jeep Cherokee.

Performance Capabilities

The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT is a performance first vehicle, so it only makes sense to start under the hood. The SRT comes with a 6.4-liter V8 engine that produces a whopping 475 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. Managed by an 8-speed automatic transmission, the Durango SRT can go from zero to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds.

As a point of comparison, the 2018 Range Rover Velar covers the same distance in 6.4 seconds. The Durango SRT isn’t just packed with horsepower either. It has Brembo brakes, standard all-wheel drive and adaptive dampers to provide a handling upgrade that matches all the power of the drivetrain.

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The Durango SRT can also really haul … assets. It has a tow rating of 8,700 pounds, but it lacks the off-road prowess of a Jeep. However, there is a drawback to all that belligerence, and it comes at the fuel pump. The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT gets just 13 miles per gallon in the city and 19 mpg on the highway.

You’ll need to put premium unleaded fuel in the Durango SRT so each fill-up will probably feel like giving blood.

Style Elements

As mentioned earlier, the 2019 Dodge Durango SRT looks more like a truck than a crossover. It sits rather tall at 70.9 inches and has a low minimum ground clearance of 8.1 inches. The basic design is a bit dated, but the 2019 SRT benefits from some distinctive style elements.

The front fascia has a crosshair grille design and a domed hood for air extraction. With a white pearl exterior paint and dual black racing stripes, the Durango SRT looks positively breath-taking. Inside the cabin, you’ll find SRT signature badges and stunning red leather seating, a thickly-padded steering wheel, custom headliner and carbon fiber paneling.

Technology

The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT comes with an 8-inch touchscreen interface, keyless ignition and a few USB ports sprinkled around the cabin. The much-sought-after Apple Car Play and Android Auto compatibility are also standard tech features.

The layout of the center console is simple and straightforward, as you would expect from this vehicle. It is indeed a man’s SUV with few unnecessary adornments or cluttered buttons. The navigation controls work with the Chrysler Uconnect software, and it’s relatively easy to customize the screens to suit your needs.

Safety Features

In recent years, Dodge vehicles have had poor safety equipment and even poorer ratings from the government. It’s the brand’s Achilles’ heel. The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT does come with some advanced safety features, but still lacks the safety scores of its nearest competitors. Dodge should have made features like rear parking sensors, lane-departure warnings and lane-keeping assist standard on the SRT and other models. Instead, they got bundled into the Technology Package, so you’ll have to pay more to get them.

Blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alerts also come packaged at an additional cost. The Durango received a “marginal” rating from the IIHS and only a four-star rating from the NHTSA. When shoppers start comparing other brands, this could be a game-changer for Dodge.

The Takeaway

This might be one of your last chances to drive and enjoy such a powerful vehicle with a traditional gasoline engine. The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT is for driving enthusiasts who dream of drag racing, not your casual city cruiser who needs space for the kids and groceries.

As an optional Lightweight package, you can even have the third row of seating removed from the Durango SRT. Drawbacks for this vehicle are the low MPG and safety ratings, as well as the starting cost of over USD 60,000.

However, if you’re interested in the Durango SRT at all, it’s doubtful that these factors will steer you away from such a versatile performance vehicle.

This SUV is all about the thrill, the sound, and the experience. Hopefully, this won’t be your primary mode of transportation, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more exciting weekend traveler.

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About Freddy Blackmon 65 Articles
Freddy Blackmon is a freelance writer and journalist who has a passion for cars, technology, and fitness. Look for articles on these topics and more. Follow him on Facebook and Instagram.