2003 Dodge Durango Reviews

2003 Durango New Car Test Drive

The following review is for a 2002 Model Year. There may be minor changes to current model you are looking at.

Introduction

Dodge Durango is handsome, powerful, versatile, and refined. For many buyers, however, Durango's most appealing feature is its just-right size. Based on the Dakota pickup, Durango is smaller and more maneuverable than the full-size SUVs, such as the Ford Expedition and Chevrolet Tahoe. Yet Durango still offers six-passenger seating, V8 power, and a hefty towing capacity. Dodge Durango has found a comfortable niche that Ford and GM missed. 

With theater-style seating that gives rear-seat passengers a view of the road ahead, and other interior creature comforts, the Durango is a smart choice for large families. It's also a good choice for people who tow light to medium-sized trailers. A beefy 5.9-liter V8 is available, and it delivers plenty of pulling power, while the more sophisticated 4.7-liter overhead-cam V8 offers decent performance and an added measure of refinement. 

A new five-speed automatic transmission is available for 2002 that should improve fuel economy. 

Also new for 2002 are optional side-curtain air bags ($495), available for every trim level. For 2002, Dodge has added a high-value trim level called SXT with unique Graphite trim. Last year, Durango benefited from an all-new, more comfortable and more car-like interior, plus a new performance-tuned R/T model. 

Lineup

Durango is available with two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive. Two engines are available: a 4.7-liter V8 and a 5.9-liter V8. 

Five trim levels are available. Sport ($25,100) and Sport 4WD ($27,220) feature color-keyed trim, 15-inch alloy wheels, AM/FM/cassette stereo, and many other luxuries as standard equipment. 

New for 2002, is the SXT ($26,995), with unique Graphite exterior trim, 16-inch alloy wheels, a roof rack, and a CD player. 

SLT ($29,320) and SLT 4WD ($31,440) feature power seats, fog lights, a separate rear-compartment heater, compact disc changer, and a chrome grille. 

SLT Plus ($31,930) and SLT Plus 4WD ($34,050) add leather upholstery, an overhead console, Infinity sound system, leather-wrapped steering wheel, color-coordinated running boards, and heated mirrors. 

R/T ($36,620) is a performance model that combines the 245-horsepower 5.9-liter V8 with a higher numerical rear axle ratio, a limited-slip rear differential and sport-tuned exhaust to yield quicker off-the line acceleration. Four-wheel drive is standard. Seventeen-inch wheels with 275/60R17 tires and a sport-tuned suspension improve handling, while body-colored wheel flares help set the R/T apart. 

1 / 3