What kind of vehicle is the 2021 Dodge Durango? What does it compare to?

The 2021 Dodge Durango three-row crossover SUV seats up to seven passengers and has the most powerful engine and highest tow rating of any mid-size SUV. When equipped with a Hellcat supercharged V-8 engine, it doesn’t compare to anything except the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk in the same FCA family. As a three-row SUV with more modest but still blistering powertrains, it competes against the Ford Explorer, Kia Telluride, Hyundai Palisade, Mazda CX-9, and many others. 

Is the 2021 Dodge Durango a good SUV?

Review continues below

For towing and performance in a three-row mid-size SUV, the Dodge Durango is hard to match. For efficiency and safety, not so much. Though it’s old, it comes well equipped and earns a solid TCC Rating of 7.0 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

What’s new for the 2021 Dodge Durango?

Refreshed for its tenth anniversary, the 2021 Dodge Durango’s changes might be overshadowed by the addition of a 710-horsepower 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 Hellcat engine used in Dodge’s fire-breathing muscle cars. In addition to a sharpened face, the gracefully aging Durango gets a larger 8.4-inch touchscreen as standard, and an electronic gear shifter replaces the mechanical one for a wider cockpit that orients itself to the driver. The switchgear gets narrower, but Dodge added buttons for available heated and cooled seats so you don’t need to go through the touchscreen. 

The Durango carries itself like a Dodge muscle car, aged but timeless, buff but more from free weights than Pilates. Optional hood scoop and vents flex the Durango’s intent even more. The inside is more toned, and draped in mostly black soft-touch surfaces and more storage space than in years past. 

A V-6 and three V-8s all mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission present the shopper with many choices, all of them made for speed. The SRT Hellcat 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 outdoes the SRT 392 cubic-inch V-8 with a 0-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds. Certain Durangos tow up to 8,700 pounds. All that V-8 power comes at a cost at the pump, as even the most efficient V-8 with cylinder deactivation is rated at just 17 mpg combined. The V-6 gets 21 mpg.  

Despite all that sick performance, the Durango can ride relatively quiet and composed when not at full bore. Firm but comfy front and second-row captain’s chairs provide plenty of support, and the 50/50-split folding third row opens up more than 43 cubic feet of cargo space. 

The 2021 Durango comes well equipped with a large touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, four USB ports, and keyless entry and ignition, but it lacks the advanced driver assistance features standard on many competitors. Even on mid-grade trims it’s only available as a package. Couple that with poor crash-test ratings and gobs of power, and the Durango is behind the times where it counts. 

How much does the 2021 Dodge Durango cost?

Offered in SXT, GT, R/T, Citadel, or SRT 392 and SRT Hellcat editions, the 2021 Durango has a price spread greater than every SUV in this class, except for the Grand Cherokee. The base SXT costs $33,260, though we’d step over it to the GT for the third row and more available packages, including safety.

At the Hellcat end of things, the top Durango SRT Hellcat costs $82,490. 

Where is the 2021 Dodge Durango made?

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan.