Next-Generation Durango Rendered
Dodge has been having somewhat of an identity crisis for the past few years. The Charger and Challenger are continuing to sell well, but are aging and their replacements are still a few years away. To keep things fresh, Dodge has rolled out a steady stream of performance-oriented updates and special editions to those cars. Meanwhile, the Journey and Grand Caravan do not align with Dodge’s current performance brand image but still account for the majority of Dodge sales. The Durango is not a particularly strong seller compared to its competitors, but it does give Dodge access to a key segment: the three-row SUV. It also remains competitive because it has received several updates since the current model’s debut in 2011 and aligns with the Dodge performance marketing messages, sometimes being called the “7-seat Charger.” The Durango is a particularly important model for Dodge then, because it brings the key features of the Charger and Challenger to the booming SUV market, so it’s no surprise that they are planning to redesign it in the next few years. In fact, the next-generation Durango is going to move to an all new platform–the same body-on-frame platform underpinning the 2019 Ram 1500 DT and upcoming Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer.
With the next-generation Durango sharing a platform with a full-size pickup, one might think that it will substantially increase in size and have inferior driving dynamics to the current unibody model. We believe this is untrue. First, size doesn’t have to increase very much, if at all. The current Durango is 201.2″ long. By comparison, the body-on-frame Tahoe which shares its platform with the full-size Silverado is 204″ long. Although these are obviously different platforms, we believe the Tahoe being only slightly longer than the current Durango proves that the move to a new platform will likely be more about economies of scale to get as many vehicles onto variations of the DT platform as possible, not a move that is intended to radically change the Durango’s driving characteristics or design. In fact, we believe the next-generation Durango will wear an evolution of the current model’s sleek design language.
With this in mind, we created a speculative rendering of the next-generation Durango. We started by adding some sharper design elements to the front and rear end, flattening the roof, and modernizing the side window design. The headlights are inspired by the eye-like design of the Challenger, and the front fascia adopts a design closer to the new Charger Widebody while also being more upright than that of the current Durango. There are also some new character lines on the side of the body to add some interest.
Although the next-generation Durango is still a couple of years away, we expect to learn more as details on other models are released. For example, the next-generation Grand Cherokee, though it won’t be sharing a platform with the Durango anymore, will likely share some engine options with the big Dodge. Performance updates from the Charger and Challenger will also likely find their way under the Durango’s hood. Stay tuned to learn more about the upcoming body-on-frame Durango.
Ryan had an obsession with cars from a young age, reading NADA books and MotorTrend magazine as well as sketching cars in grade school. He has since moved on to creating renderings in Photoshop and writing about auto news. Ryan lives in Oklahoma.