1. New Eight-Speed Automatic Meets Old School Hemi V8
The Durango is still available with a 3.6-liter V6 or the mighty 5.7-liter Hemi V8. The latter continues to produce 360 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque and can tow upwards of 7,400 pounds. The big news however is the transmission. You get an eight-speed automatic regardless whether it’s rear or all-wheel drive. Our test vehicle came equipped with all-wheel drive and a hefty 5,397-lb. curb weight that does fuel economy no favors. Officially rated at 14 MPG in the city and 22 MPG on the highway, we could only muster an average of 15.7 MPG.
Shoddy mileage aside, everything else about the Durango’s drivetrain is fantastic. The eight-speed automatic is smooth and quick enough to respond in normal driving. The engine has gobs of initial torque, but top end speed does trail off a bit. Still there is more than enough power to pass on the highway. The V8 also sounds great. It’s not too loud but has a nice subdued rumble that reminds you there’s a Hemi under the hood.