As the automotive industry moves to more SUVs and crossovers, Dodge is continuing to place its popular three-row Durango against more of the industry’s larger SUVs as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) awaits the upcoming Ram 1500-based 2021 Jeep® Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer lineup, as well as the next generation Dodge Durango, which is our sources are telling us, will move with the Wagoneer onto a larger body-on-frame (BOF) platform. We have heard that the Durango switchover has been pushed back a couple of model years, but it isn’t stopping Dodge from taking on the Chevrolet Tahoe, now.
While full-size trucks continue to grow in size, the Dodge Durango is still small enough it will fit in most garages. With a length of 201.2-inches compared to the full-size Chevrolet Tahoe’s 204-inches of length, the smaller Durango is still mighty big enough to be cross-shopped by many full-size buyers. While the Durango is still almost 5-inches narrower than the full-size Tahoe, the Durango still offers passenger seating for seven compared to the wider eight-passenger layout of the Chevy.
But when you compare the Durango R/T in a rear-wheel-drive configuration, to Chevy’s base model Tahoe LS with rear-wheel-drive, it gets pretty interesting. Starting U.S. MSRP on the 2019 Chevrolet Tahoe LS begins at $48,000. That’s almost $4,000 more than the starting price of the performance-oriented Durango R/T.
The 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe LS comes standard with a 5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8 producing 355 horsepower @ 5,600 RPM and 383 lb.-ft of torque @ 4,100 RPM, which is backed with a 6-speed automatic transmission. The combination is good for an EPA full economy rating of 15 mpg in the city, 22 mpg on the highway, and 18 mpg combined. With this powertrain combination, the Tahoe can also tow up to 6,600 lbs.
When it comes to the 2020 Dodge Durango R/T comes equipped with the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V8 that produces 360 horsepower @ 5,150 RPM and 390 lb.-ft of torque @ 4,250 RPM. The HEMI is paired with a ZF-sourced 8-speed automatic transmission, this allows the Durango R/T to achieve 14 mpg in the city, 22 mpg on the highway, and 18 mpg combined as well as tow up to 7,400 lbs (800 lbs more than the Tahoe) when properly equipped.
With it comes to content, because the Tahoe LS is an entry-level model its doesn’t get all of the bells and whistles that the Durango does. The Tahoe LS comes standard with cloth seats, where the Durango R/T comes with Leather with Suede inserts. The Durango R/T also features High-Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps compared to standard halogen units on Tahoe, as well as standard 20-inch aluminum wheels compared to Tahoe’s 18-inch offering.
The 2020 Dodge Durango R/T also features a lot more enhanced creature comforts and safety benefits than the 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe LS with items such as…
- Heated 1st and 2nd Row Seats
- Heated Steering Wheel
- Standard 8.4-inch Uconnect Touchscreen Infotainment System with Navigation
- Premium Audio with 506-Watt Amplifier and 9 Alpine® Amplified Speakers with Subwoofer
- Standard Rear Collision Mitigation
- Power Liftgate
- Standard Passive Entry
So unless you absolutely need the extra passenger seat, the seven-passenger 2020 Dodge Durango R/T outperforms, out tows, and out features the eight-passenger 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe LS in every way. You will be seeing more comparisons from the Dodge brand’s Durango compared to other full-size mainstream SUVs, as Dodge will press the market getting the nameplate ready to shift into that market in the upcoming years.