$23,827 - $32,983

2016 Dodge Durango Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2016 Dodge Durango was new.

Scorecard

Performance: 8.5

The 2016 Dodge Durango has composed handling for such a large SUV, critics say, and as long as you skip the sport-tuned R/T model, it has a smooth ride as well. Test drivers note that the standard V6 delivers solid power and impressive towing, while the optional V8 is even more capable in both regards.

  • "If you're used to a bigger, truck-based SUV, the Durango should feel pleasantly maneuverable." -- Edmunds
  • "Among tough rear-wheel-drive SUVs, the Durango's driving experience stands out as one of the very best." -- AutoTrader (2015)
  • "Four-wheel independent suspension, a near 50/50 weight distribution and electro-hydraulic power steering create a sure-footed driving experience … both on and off the road." -- Left Lane News (2015)

Acceleration and Power

The 2016 Dodge Durango comes standard with a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower. A 5.7-liter V8 with 360 horsepower is available. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard.

The 2016 Dodge Durango earns an EPA-estimated 19/27 mpg city/highway with rear-wheel drive, which is good for a three-row SUV. The V8 Durango earns up to 14/22 mpg city/highway.

Auto writers say the V6 Durango should have enough power for most buyers, and they note that its towing capacity (6,200 pounds) is good for a V6-powered SUV. They say the optional V8 makes the Durango more powerful than most similarly priced competitors and gives it a more impressive maximum towing capacity (7,400 pounds).

  • "Its available V8 engine … [helps distinguish it from its rivals] - not only from a smoke-'em-off-the-line perspective but should you need to tow something as well. Indeed, even the V6-powered Durango can lug around much heavier trailers than its competitors can." -- Edmunds
  • "The 3.6-liter Pentastar-derived V6 engine is no slouch, either: the eight-speed meshes -- pardon the pun -- more completely with the Hemi, but for the buyer who doesn't need to max out a 7,400-lb tow rating, the V6 has all the power you will ever need. It, too, can tow -- 6,200 lbs worth." -- AutoWeek (2014)
  • "If you are a suburban kid-hauler and soccer-team coach using the Durango in lieu of a minivan, then by all means opt for the more fuel efficient and perfectly adequate V6. If, on the other hand, you have stuff to pull - boats, trailers, etc., then it's Hemi time." -- Autoblog (2014)

Handling and Braking

Test drivers are impressed with the smooth ride and composed handling of the 2016 Dodge Durango, especially given its size. They say the sporty R/T model has even more responsive handling, though they note that it also has a stiffer ride. The Durango comes standard with rear-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive is optional.

  • "One area where the Durango's weight helps is the ride quality. There's a resolutely buttoned-down feel to the way it rolls down the road." -- Edmunds
  • "This is a large vehicle, though, and you'll never forget it from behind the wheel. Still, the Durango handles better than something this size has a right to, especially with the R/T's performance-oriented suspension." -- AutoTrader (2015)
  • "Though we didn't have the chance to test the Durango with rugrats in back, we did get to put it through its paces on a mix of curvy canyon roads and mellow coastal routes. It was understandably more at home in the latter situation, where a compliant ride and quiet cabin made it a pleasant cruising companion, although its remarkably sporty platform didn't exactly embarrass itself in the twisties." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • Durango's standard suspension capably absorbs most imperfections and does a fine job of squelching secondary body motions. That doesn't apply to the R/T, which has a sport suspension and 20-inch wheels. Many more bumps make their way into the cabin. It feels more like a traditional truck-type SUV than the crossover it technically is." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

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