Chicago motor show debut for big-power SUV

2018 Dodge Durango SRT

The long rumoured Dodge Durango SRT has made its official debut ahead of this year's Chicago motor show.

With a 6.4-litre Hemi V8 producing 354kW of power at 6000rpm and 637Nm at 4300rpm, Dodge claims that the new Durango SRT is "the most powerful three-row SUV", although that claim conveniently ignores the Mercedes-AMG GLS63 and its 430kW 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8.

The Durango SRT's 6.4-litre V8 is shared with its platform mate, the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. Both cars feature an eight-speed automatic and standard all-wheel drive.

2018 Dodge Durango SRT

Despite featuring a longer body and wheelbase, and an extra row of seats, the Durango SRT is quicker than its Grand Cherokee counterpart. According to Dodge, the new Durango SRT is capable of completing the 0-60mph (0-97km/h) dash in 4.4 seconds, and has a 12.9 second quarter mile (400m) time that's been certified by the National Hot Rod Association.

By comparison, the Grand Cherokee SRT has a 0-60mph time of 4.8 seconds, and requires around 13.5 seconds to complete the quarter mile.

Additionally, the Durango SRT has a tow rating of 3900kg, while the Grand Cherokee SRT is rated at 3265kg.

2018 Dodge Durango SRT

Visually, the Durango SRT is differentiated from its less brisk brethren by a new grille, front bumper, a bonnet with an inlet scoop and heat extractors, LED fog lamps, 10.2cm exhaust tips, and a modified rear fascia.

The Durango SRT rides on a stiffer suspension setup with active dampers, and 20-inch alloy wheels shod with 295/45 Pirelli Scorpion Verde all-season tyres. Buyers can upgrade to forged 20-inch alloy wheels and Pirelli P-Zero three-season tyres.

Brembo brakes are fitted at all four corners, with six-piston callipers at the front, and four-piston units at the rear. Dodge estimates that the Durango SRT requires around 35 metres to come to a complete stop from 60mph (97km/h).

2018 Dodge Durango SRT

On the inside, the Durango SRT features a speedometer that goes all the way up to 180mph (290km/h), a flat-bottomed steering wheel, a hand-wrapped leather dashboard, Nappa leather and suede upholstery, and second row captain's chairs with heating and ventilation.

Options include red Laguna leather upholstery, and carbon-fibre trim.

Australia

Given that the current Durango is six years old, and is only available in left-hand drive, the chances of the Durango SRT coming down under officially are next to zero.

The Dodge Durango SRT goes on sale in the States during the fourth quarter of 2017.