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2021 Dodge Durango to get surprisingly hefty refresh?

by David Zatz on

The Dodge Durango may be on its way out as a new three-row Jeep Grand Cherokee goes into production, but it’s apparently going to stick around for a while—and get a hefty refresh along the way. It’s possible that the Durango may even continue for a few years, as a serious tow SUV that undercuts the future Jeep Wagoneer by thousands of dollars. At least, that’s what AutoBison claims, and they take the idea seriously enough to have a rendering.

2021 Durango rendering

The current Durango has been around for a while, but aside from fuel economy, it’s still quite competitive—if overshadowed by the Grand Cherokee. The two vehicles are built in the same Detroit plant, and have the same platform; the main differences are a little more length in the Dodge, providing room for a third row of seats, and a suspension more tuned for on-road than off-road driving.

AutoBison reported that the 2021 Durango is set to get eTorque engines, as part of FCA’s effort to cut back on its subsidies for Tesla. A new front fascia, seen in disguise during testing, will have more aggressive vents, with integrated fog lights and LED headlights (see the rendering for their idea of what the effect may be).

Several sources have also said that a Hellcat-based Durango SRT is on the way, either replacing or adding to the current (and surprisingly potent) 392 Hemi Durango. Regardless, 2021 Durango buyers will see a new dashboard, and top-model buyers may get the 10-inch UConnect 5 system from the 2021 Chrysler Pacifica Pinnacle.

Some may ask why FCA would spend the money, when the Grand Cherokee three-row and the Wagoneer are coming; but they might be setting up the Durango to be the value leader of the group, or they might be targeting a completely different audience from the Jeep buyers. There might be suspension tweaks to make the Durango even more capable on-road, as it’s decoupled from the Grand Cherokee, as well.

It’s quite possible the Durango will stick around as long as customers want it—which frees up Jeeps to be Jeeps, so to speak. The Durango can soak up the big-SUV volume, while the Wagoneer and three-row Grand Cherokee are more off-road-oriented, and more expensive. It seems like a clever strategy.   Original 2021 Durango story


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