The Dodge Durango has been promoted as the three-row Dodge Charger. That description has held some truth. After all, the Charger and the Durango share the V6 Pentastar and V8 HEMI engines. What they have not shared, however, is the Charger’s SRT powertrains. That all changes with the first ever Durango SRT. While the SRT (Street and Racing Technology) badge might seem like an oxymoron on a crossover, skeptics may change their minds when they learn of the Durgano’s 392 cubic inch V8 that produces 475 horsepower and 490 pound feet of torque. They also may be swayed by the all wheel burnouts such a powertrain can produce with the Durango’s all-wheel-drive setup. Zero to sixty comes in at just 4.4 seconds. Indeed, a seven passenger family hauler never looked like so much fun. Exterior modifications on the SRT include a functional hood scoop that looks like it was swiped from the Charger Hellcat, and the looks-like-a-stormtrooper grille and lower fascia. A t-shifter replaces the rotary knob and commands the 8 speed automatic. Stiffer springs and sway bars aid in handling, and Brembo brakes bring the crossover to a stop. If this SRT-badged Durango sounds like a cure for the common crossover, you can find it at Dodge dealers beginning in the fall of 2017.
The Ford Expedition has been a mainstay in Ford’s truck and SUV lineup since the late ’90s. The truck was originally based on the new-for-’97 F-150 and has gone through several significant updates along the way that has kept the family workhorse relevant. Look closely though, and you will see some windshield and door glass that has carried on since that 1998 introduction. To say, then, that we welcome a truly all-new platform for the Expedition is a bit of an understatement. The standard Expedition returns while the long wheelbase EL version is redubbed Expedition MAX which accommodates an additional 16.8 cubic feet of cargo. Like the outgoing model there is no V8 available. The Expeditions borrows the 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost from the F-150 so expect about 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. While a V6 may seem like not enough engine for such a large vehicle consider that the 2018 Expedition sheds up to 300 pounds over the 2017. Also consider that the original Expedition offered a standard 215 horsepower and 290 pound-feet of torque, so we’re sure this engine will continue to prove itself useful. That 300 pound weight reduction, by the way, is thanks to an aluminum intensive body which no doubt shares lessons learned from the recently revamped F-150. Trick features in the new SUV include a hinged shelf/organizer referred to as the Advanced Cargo Manager, second row seats that can tip and slide with a child seat in place, a reclining 3rd row seat, Sync 3 infotainment system, and available connectivity to home cable TV by means of Sling. Expect to see the Expedition and Expedition MAX in Ford dealerships in the fall of 2017.