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2014 Dodge Durango Review

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2014 Dodge Durango Expert Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.0

Full-size SUVs are enjoying renewed popularity, and the Dodge Durango, freshened for 2014, is a leader of the pack. Not quite as large as a Chevy Tahoe, the leaner Durango is no less capable, offering a choice of V6 or Hemi V8 engines, rear- or all-wheel drive (RWD, AWD), five well-equipped trim levels, new electronic features, and a new 8-speed automatic transmission. Though slightly smaller than some rivals, the Durango doesn't sacrifice interior room, comfort or towing ability (6,200 pounds minimum). The only rear-drive unit body in its class, the Durango offers a strong alternative to front-drive crossover SUVs such as the GMC Acadia, Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer. Equipped with the available 5.7-liter Hemi V8, the Durango can out-tow and out-muscle any V6 – up to 7,400 pounds.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you require a vehicle that can accommodate up to seven, tow up to 7,400 pounds and fit easily into your garage, the 2014 Dodge Durango tops a very short list. Unit-body construction yields high chassis rigidity and agile handling. And Dodge claims more than 60 safety and security features.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If towing and brute power are not important attributes, a more fuel-efficient option might be wiser. Large front-drive crossover SUVs such as GM's Buick Enclave, Chevy Traverse and GMC Acadia offer similar roominess with better fuel economy. There are also many midsize crossover SUVs with 3-row seating.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.0
  • 6.8
  • 6.8
  • 7.2
  • 5.8
  • 7.8
How It Ranks

#59

out of 73

Fuel Economy

#10

out of 71

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

9.2 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2014 Dodge Durango Low/wide front photo What's New for 2014

Front-end styling has been updated for 2014, and a "racetrack" taillight design, a la Dodge Charger, distinguishes the rear. Soft-touch surfaces and upgrade materials abound in redesigned interiors, a new 8-speed automatic transmission is standard, fuel economy ratings are up across the board, and infotainment features have been enhanced.

Driving the Durango
2014 Dodge Durango Front angle view photo

Driving Impressions Despite the 2014 Dodge Durango's mass, the 290-horsepower Pentastar V6 accelerates briskly, delivers ample passing power and tows willingly, its performance and fuel economy enhanced by a smooth new 8-speed...

... automatic transmission. The V6 will be more than equal to most towing (up to 6,200 pounds) and cargo hauling, but for heavier trailers (up to 7,400 pounds), or just picking up the pace, the optional 390-horsepower Hemi V8 may be preferable. Not only does it enhance thrust, it makes seductive V8 sounds in the process. Like all vehicles in this category, the 2014 Durango feels ponderous compared to passenger cars, and its steering is a bit numb. But its responses are agile versus competing SUVs, particularly in the sporty R/T. Ride quality is smooth in most trim levels (firmer in the R/T), the redesigned cabin is quiet, and the powerful brakes seem to be fade free despite repeated hard use.

DURANGO R/T
About the closest you'll get to an SRT version of the 2014 Durango, the R/T's lowered sport suspension, recalibrated shocks and springs, and aggressive low-profile 20-inch tires make this a very agile vehicle by full-size SUV standards. Oh, did we mention it's got a Hemi?

ADAPTIVE CRUISE CONTROL
Adaptive cruise is a plus in slow-and-go traffic, but it leaves overly large gaps at higher speeds that invite other drivers to cut in front. The Durango's new adaptive cruise option not only reduces the minimum gap to the vehicle ahead, its adaptive function can be suspended without shutting the system off.

2014 Dodge Durango Details
2014 Dodge Durango Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

The interior of the 2014 Durango reflects luxury-car quality and craftsmanship, an update that emphasizes comfort, premium materials, visual elegance and supreme quiet. Limited and Citadel trims offer such features as heated and ventilated front seats, heated 2nd-row seating and standard leather seating. The Durango's 28 possible configurations allow for any combination of people and cargo, from the roomy spot behind the 2nd-row seat to the full-length flat cargo floor created by the flush-folding front passenger seat. A purposeful black color scheme, highlighted by bright trim elements, distinguishes the sporty R/T, and in Durangos equipped with 2nd-row captain's chairs a new pass-through feature eases 3rd-row access.

Exterior
2014 Dodge Durango photo

Freshened for 2014, the Durango's front fascia sports a set of LED eyeliners under the projector-beam headlights that serve as daytime running lights. There are three versions of Dodge's familiar cross-hair grille, all slimmer than their predecessors. A new LED array makes a double span across the rear end, the distinctive "racetrack taillight" display. Rallye and R/T models are distinguished by more body-colored trim, as well as the R/T's lower ride height, while others get more brightwork, especially the top-of-the-line Citadel. There are seven new wheel designs, ranging from 18 to 20 inches, and nine colors. The Durango has been one of the most readily identifiable of all SUVs, as well as one of the best-looking, since its 1998 introduction.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The entry-level SXT trim features the Uconnect infotainment system with voice command, 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, fog lights, heated power side mirrors, tri-zone automatic climate control, three 12-volt outlets, tilt/telescopic steering column and an AM/FM/CD radio with WMA/MP3 support, Sirius Satellite Radio and auxiliary input jack. At the high end of the Durango spectrum, the Citadel adds 20-inch wheels, a power liftgate, power sunroof, configurable instruments, 8.4-inch center-stack touch screen with 3D Navigation, HID headlights, Nappa leather seats, heated and ventilated front seats, rain-sensing wipers, adaptive cruise control, Rear Cross Path Detection system, heated power tilt/telescopic steering wheel and keyless Enter-N-Go.

Optional Equipment

Options vary by trim level and include a new navigation radio system with 8.4-inch touch screen, voice activation and Sirius Travel Link; configurable instrumentation, power sunroof, ParkView rearview camera, ParkSense rear park assist, Blind-spot Monitoring, auto-dimming high beams, UConnect phone (Bluetooth), Alpine premium audio, Bluetooth streaming audio, heated 2nd-row seats, power liftgate, rain-sensing wipers, a heated steering wheel and skidplates. Option packages include the Trailer Tow Group IV that adds a 220-amp alternator, heavy-duty engine oil cooler, Class IV hitch receiver and load-leveling rear shocks. The Rallye Appearance Group adds 20-inch polished wheels, black bezel headlights and body-colored trim.

Under the Hood
2014 Dodge Durango Engine photo

On all but the R/T trim the 2014 Dodge Durango's standard engine is Chrysler's award-winning Pentastar V6. Unquestionably one of the best V6 engines ever from Chrysler, it has more than enough power to satisfy most SUV drivers. Equipped with dual-overhead cams and variable-valve timing, the 3.6-liter Pentastar is capable of achieving maximum performance without sacrificing fuel economy. The Durango's optional 5.7-liter Hemi V8 features a fuel-saver mode that seamlessly deactivates four of the eight cylinders when full power is not required. When power is needed, however, the Hemi has it in spades, delivering 360 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of tow-ready torque. Both engines are mated to a smooth 8-speed automatic transmission, new for 2014, and AWD is available with either.

3.6-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25 mpg (RWD), 17/24 mpg (AWD)

5.7-liter V8
360 horsepower @ 5,150 rpm
390 lb-ft of torque @ 4,250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/23 mpg (RWD), 14/22 mpg (AWD)

The 2014 Dodge Durango SXT has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $30,790 for the RWD model and $33,190 for AWD. The Rallye bumps the price to $33,985, Limited models start at $36,990, the V8-powered R/T at $39,990, and Citadel pricing, the top of the order, opens at $41,990. With the Hemi V8 and AWD a fully loaded Citadel tops out right around $50,000. These prices compare well with comparably equipped versions of the Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer, none of which offers a V8 option. To get the best Durango deal, be sure to take a look at the Fair Purchase Price on KBB.com to learn what buyers in your area are actually paying. As for resale, we expect the new Durango will probably hold its own against the Chevrolet Traverse, but still fall short of the Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer.

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2014 Dodge Durango Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 106 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.2/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.5/10
  • Comfort
    9.5/10
    Styling
    9.4/10

Buying new vehicles since 1980. Best one yet.

By on Tuesday, July 14, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Look, Performance, Mileage, Value, Space, Features"

Cons: "Option choices (packages)"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My only issue so far was with the option choices. I wanted heated ventilated seats but had to take the Nav. and sunroof to get them. I didn't want either so I went with the SXT Plus pkg. with heated cloth seats. I've had the HEMI before and planned to get it again. When I test drove a Citadel with the V6 I was amazed by the power. The 3.6L combined with the 8 speed transmission hooked me. I love the size of the Durango and the 3rd row seat is surprisingly comfortable. It's a shame to call the paint job grey when the Maximum Steel Metallic is gorgeous and the exterior has just enough chrome looking trim. The 8.4" touch screen, Bluetooth and Sirius have been great for me. Solid, quiet interior with plenty of useful features and a classy look and feel. I never thought I would want a back up camera but I'm glad I got one. For a larger vehicle it handles surprisingly well. I had only had the vehicle a short time when another driver decided to change lanes abruptly and into my driver's side. I was clear to my right and swerved 2 lanes to miss him but the ESC quickly took control and had me back on my (not so) merry way. Between my wife and I we have owned/leased vehicles from Jeep, Ford, Chrysler, Mazda, Plymouth, Pontiac, Dodge and Oldsmobile. This one is the best of the bunch."

11 people out of 26 found this review helpful

I love this thing

By on Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 18,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "comfortable, practical vehicle"

Cons: "recalls adding up aslow to get done, fron facia"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Great gas mileage (24 mpg highway in summer, 17-18 around town in winter). Heated steering wheel Comfortable Plenty of room, 'v6 tows my smallish boat fine Early on in cold winter day, brakes seemed to hang and make noise when backing up. They came and picked it up on a flat bed, said no problem seen and it never happened again - all free, so I cannot complain. Front air dam is low and busted off in snow bank. Was worried about chrysler quality (been burned before) but so far so good except for recalls (see cons). Love the 8 speed auto, turn knob selector ok now that I am used to it and it is less intrusive. Not as cool as push buttons on old dodge darts though!"

20 people out of 36 found this review helpful

Nice looking and that's it

By on Wednesday, June 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,500

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Nice looking"

Cons: "Heavy, needs more power"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"Very heavy,marginal handling with a full load (6 adults) lacks power, takes forever to accelerate from a standstill but once it reaches 4k rpm hold on so it is hard to control, brakes are marginal too, needs at least another 100 ponies or lower the weight like ford did with the F 150."

18 people out of 36 found this review helpful

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