Dodge Durango Hellcat – the worlds fastest SUV
For moms and dads that need a minivan but just can’t pull that trigger, the three-row crossover SUV has been their saving grace. Just like a minivan, these SUVs are roomy and are packed with features and loaded with gadgets to keep the kids happy and distracted.
But much like minivans, most of these three-row SUVs are about as exciting as a typical household appliance. Oh – they do their job just fine, just with no entertainment value – just like a refrigerator. Well, the SRT versions of the popular Dodge Durango breaks that mold by allowing you to pack all the kids and still feel like you’re behind the wheel of a muscle car.
And in the case of the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat – you are.
If there ever was a vehicle that was to give the bird to the typical minivan, this Durango is it. With the Hellcat, we are not just talking about Dodge stuffing a big V8 in the Durango – heck, we already have that in the Durango SRT 392, with its 6.4-liter V8 and 475 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. No; with the Hellcat, we are talking serious power here – 710 hp and 645 of lb-ft of torque from its 6.2-liter supercharged V8. That power is sent to all four wheels by way of an eight-speed automatic transmission. And yes, there are still three rows of seats to get the kids to the soccer game.
In Hellcat form, the Durango is really all about the driving experience – and that begins the moment you press the dash-mounted Start button. The 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V8 snarls to life, reminding you of what you’re about to get yourself into. Put the palm-style shifter into drive and step on the gas and the power pours on. Step harder into the pedal and the Durango starts pulling hard – really hard. Just when you think how crazy fast you are going, it gets crazier as the whine from the supercharger overtakes the exhaust – and you get pushed further back into your seat. If you have a drag strip at your disposal, you’ll discover the Hellcat will hit 60 mph in about 3.5 seconds, race through the 1/4 mile in 11.5 seconds and reach a top speed near the 180-mph mark. By the way, these times can all be calculated from within the car – the Performance Pages feature records these times along with lap times, reaction times and g-forces.
To slow things down, the Durango Hellcat has 15.8-inch vented brake rotors fitted with six-piston Brembo calipers up front and 13.8-inch rotors with four-piston calipers in the rear. Mounted to those are 20-inch wheels.
Even though the Durango Hellcat is all about performance, it does make for a good daily driver. Sharing the same platform with the current Jeep Grand Cherokee, the Durango is a very spacious, comfortable vehicle. The seating is high – perfect for those that like to overlook the other vehicles on the road. The second-row captain’s chairs provide comfortable seating, while those in the third-row, while a little cramped, are suitable for the young ones. If you need to haul things, the available tow package allows the Durango Hellcat to tow up to 8,700 pounds.
The Durango Hellcat isn’t for everyone. In fact, it’s for very few. Starting price is just over $82,000 and keeping it on the road will cost a gallon of gas for every 13 miles traveled. And obtaining one could be tricky, as the folks at Dodge claim only about 2,000 will be made for 2021 and then it’s done. But if you want the most powerful SUV ever, then this is it. One thing is for certain; when soccer practice is over, all the kids are gonna want to go home in the Durango Hellcat.
— Christopher A. Randazzo
By The Numbers:
2021 Dodge Durango Hellcat
Base Price: $82,490.00 (est.)
Price as Tested: $82,490.00 (est.)
Layout: front-engine / all-wheel drive
Engine: 6.2 liter Supercharged Hemi V8
Transmission: eight-speed automatic
Horsepower: 710 hp
Torque: 645 ft-lbs.
EPA Fuel Economy: 13 mpg
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