Ritch Julian's Durango
I picked up the Durango in LA and experienced a day of typical LA traffic. The view from the leather captains chair was great, the side view mirrors are huge and 'blind sports' were very minimal. On the eight or so hour drive to the Reno area for off-road testing, the Durango was very car like on curvy two-lane highway 395. There was enough power to pass the usual motorhomes and keep the speed limit up all of the grades. The interior was a little
'boomy' over rough spots in the road, and that was solved by turning the magnificent stereo up just a bit.
The rest of the interior was well fitted out, and had eleven cup holders- enough for all potential passengers and the family pets. Instrumentation was easy to read and understand, along with the controls for the climate and cruise control. The power seats and tilt steering column were adjustable enough to allow different driving positions and should fit a wide range of bodies. The rear seats folded up and down very easily.
Off-road, the wheelbase and length added challenge to even the most simple obstacle. With the hood design that has taken so many by surprise, it is hard to determine exactly where the right front corner was at all times.
The long wheelbase and power available under the hood, along with a mis-functioning four-wheel drive selector, made the slippery power pole roads a blast in two wheel drive. It was easy, and a lot of fun, to get the big Durango into a 4 wheel-drift condition with just a flick of the wrist and tap on the pedal. It was very predictable in such conditions which added to the fun.
If you have a heard o kids or animals that you need to tote around and plan to
off-roading only once a year, or use four-wheel drive in bad weather, the Durango might be for you. If more
off-roading or fewer passengers is in your future, the Jeep
Cherokee Limited might be the way to go.