The performance world was shaken up earlier this month, with the arrival of the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat. A vehicle that fans have been waiting for, for years. But yet, the Dodge//SRT has announced that the 710 horsepower three-row performance SUV will only be available for a single model year. It has left a lot of people scratching their heads, asking why?
It can all be contributed to the brand’s decision to keep the current Durango for an extended lifecycle, rather than replace it with an all-new vehicle like the upcoming 2022 Jeep® Grand Cherokee. Instead, the vehicle is subject to several government-related hurdles and manufacturing issues due to the arrival of the upcoming new Grand Cherokee.
In a recent interview with the website Muscle Cars & Trucks, Tim Kuniskis, Global Head of Alfa Romeo and Head of Passenger Cars – Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and FIAT, FCA – North America, explained a bit more about the production issues surrounding the Durango SRT Hellcat. “(The Durango Hellcat) is not limited, not serialized like what we do with (Dodge Demon), but we’re only building them for six months,” said Kuniskis. “With all of the changes we made in the plant to come back up (to production) post-COVID with the sequencing and spacing in the plant, it’s changed the number we can build… I don’t have an actual number but it will be less than 2,000. I don’t how much less than 2,000. It will be determined by customer demand and how much we can build in that six-month period.”
That’s right, the Durango SRT Hellcat will be rarer than the 840 horsepower drag racing-oriented 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, which produced just over 3,300 units during its limited production run.
Kuniskis when on to say, “When we switch to 2022 model year, there’s new evaporative emission requirements that come in that the Hellcat engine does not meet in that platform,” said Kuniskis. “And with the change in platforms for the next generation (WL) Jeep Grand Cherokee, it’s a one year cycle (for Durango Hellcat).”
For the lucky customers who get their hands on the upcoming 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat, they will experience a vehicle that the brand and many Dodge enthusiasts will simply not get a chance to enjoy. However, it doesn’t mean that a Hellcat-powered SUV will be absent from Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep/Ram dealers. A new Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk model, which is expected to receive Hellcat power, will debut sometime late next year.
Dodge will begin taking orders this fall for the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat. The vehicles will begin production in early 2021 and arrive in showrooms shortly after. Pricing for the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat, has yet to be announced.