Automotive

Published on July 3rd, 2020 | by Subhash Nair

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Move Aside Urus, America Just Built A More Powerful SUV

The Lamborghini Urus just lost its title of “most powerful SUV” to the Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat. Now, if you’re Malaysia, you’ve probably not even heard of the basic Dodge Durango before. And that’s ok, it’s very American. The thing is huge and quite obviously made for a different kind of market.

The Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat is powered by a supercharged 6.2-litre V8 that produces 710 horsepower at 6,000rpm and 875Nm of torque at 4,000rpm. This allows the SUV to sprint from 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds. It completes the quarter mile sprint in 11.5 seconds. The real world results trail the Lamborghini Urus by a hair, but it’s still got more power out of the engine (and weighs more, AND is based on a passenger car), which is all it takes for the title of Most Powerful, I guess.

BHPetrol RON95 Euro 4M

Here’s how the two SUVs compare

AspectDodge Durango SRT HellcatLamborghini Urus
Engine6.2L V8 Supercharged4.0L V8 Twin Turbocharged
HP710641
Torque875850
0-60mph3.5s3.0s (unofficial) 3.6s 0-62mph (official)
Top Speed289km/h305km/h
Weight2540kg (est)2200kg
LxWxH5075mm x 1925mm x 1801mm 5113mm x 2017mm x 1638mm 

The Durango SRT Hellcat is apparently so poor at emissions, that the car will only be produced for a year. After 2021, regulations will force Dodge to pull it from sale. Looks like the whole reason it exists is to show the Italians what American muscle is all about.

Here’s the press release with more information.

PRESS RELEASE

Designed and engineered to push the boundaries of what an SUV can be, the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat is powered by the proven supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI Hellcat V-8 engine, which delivers a best-in-class 710 horsepower and 645 lb.-ft. of torque, mated to a standard TorqueFlite 8HP95 eight-speed automatic transmission.

The performance improvements begin with the new front fascia design, a new chin splitter, updated engine oil cooler duct, air guide and snorkel for cold air induction. A new, unique rear spoiler creates an improved aerodynamic balance with the new front-end design, resulting in a massive increase in rear downforce of more than 400 percent (140 lbs. @ 180 mph).

SRT engineers upgraded the Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat to improve handling, including several race-inspired technologies and Brembo brakes, resulting in performance numbers never before seen on a Durango.

Compared with the previous top performance Durango, the 2020 Durango SRT 392, the new 2021 Durango SRT Hellcat has an upgraded suspension that delivers:

  • More comfort in Auto mode and better handling in Track mode: 
    • Thanks to a tuned internal rebound spring coupled with a matched upper top mount, the dynamic tuning range is increased
    • Rear damper top mounts are 18 percent stiffer
  • More responsiveness with 20 percent increase in total rebound control
  • More grip with reduced understeer by 2.5 percent, allowing the driver to go into a corner faster and exit quicker
  • More stability turning into corners with an improved roll gradient of 5 percent

The 2021 Dodge Durango SRT 392 adopts the rebound spring shocks and the upper rear top mounts from the SRT Hellcat suspension, which helps to deliver faster lap times and better handling compared to the outgoing model.

The Durango SRT Hellcat comes standard with electric power steering (EPS) with selectable steering tuning to better manage increased grip, both improving handling performance and delivering better steering feel and ease of turning efforts at parking lot speeds.

  • With EPS and standard SRT drive modes accessed via the new 10.1-inch touchscreen, drivers can tailor their driving experience by controlling transmission shift speeds, steering, paddle shifters, traction, all-wheel drive (AWD) and suspension settings
  • SRT Drive modes offer selectable settings for Street (Auto), Sport and Track, while the Custom setting allows the driver to select individual preferences

Race-inspired technologies that come standard for both 2021 Durango SRT models also bolster performance:

  • Launch Control – easily accessed from a toggle switch in the cockpit, manages tire slip while launching the vehicle to allow the driver to achieve consistent straight-line acceleration
  • Launch Assist – uses wheel speed sensors to watch for driveline-damaging wheel hop at launch and, in milliseconds, modifies the engine torque to regain full grip

The 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat delivers excellent braking performance, requiring 116 feet to come to a full stop from 60 mph. The credit belongs to the massive standard Brembo high-performance six-piston, two-piece (front) and four-piston (rear) calipers, and vented rotors at all four corners measuring 15.75 inches (front) and 13.8 inches (rear).

Durango-specific tuning, weight distribution, wheelbase and reduced understeer equals more grip and improved cornering. SRT engineers took the most powerful SUV ever to the track to see what it can do.

The result: The 2021 Durango SRT Hellcat runs 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds, covers the quarter-mile in 11.5 seconds and has a top speed of 180 mph. It also delivers a road course lap time 1.5 seconds faster than the 2020 Durango SRT 392 on a 2.1-mile road course, equal to 9 car lengths after one lap.

Heart of a Hellcat

The heart of the 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat is the renown, supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI V-8, with 710 horsepower at 6,100 rpm and 645 lb.-ft. of torque.

A hallmark of the Hellcat engine is delivering unmatched, attention-getting performance when ordered up by the driver’s right foot, while also providing smooth and refined power flow during daily driving duties or while cruising the open road.

SRT powertrain engineers developed and tested the Hellcat engine and tailored it to the Durango, ensuring it reliably handles the rigors of spirited driving in track situations for sustained periods of time without needing to de-rate its power output due to high temperatures.

An important part of that strategy, powertrain engineers created a dedicated cooling circuit for the charge air coolers integrated in the supercharger housing. This cooling circuit includes a pump, coolant reservoir and heat exchanger, and is designed to keep the air flowing into the engine cooler than 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

The twin-screw rotors in the supercharger are set close to minimize air leakage and ensure maximum performance. A proprietary coating on the rotors enables the tight fit, minimizes wear and provides corrosion resistance.

An integrated electronic bypass valve regulates boost pressure to a maximum of 11.6 psi (80 kPa). The 2.38-liter supercharger uses a drive ratio of 2.36:1 and has a maximum speed of 14,600 rpm. It is sealed for life with a premium synthetic oil.

Other key components of the Hellcat engine include:

  • Cast-iron engine block with water jackets between the cylinders for optimal cooling
  • Forged-steel crankshaft with induction-hardened bearing surfaces
  • Specially tuned crankshaft damper, burst tested to 13,000 rpm
  • High-strength, forged-alloy pistons
  • Powder-forged connecting rods with high-load-capacity bushings and diamond-like, carbon-coated piston pins
  • Piston-cooling oil jets
  • Heat-treated aluminum-alloy cylinder heads
  • Sodium-cooled exhaust valves, hollow-stem intake valves and steel-alloy heads that stand up to temperatures as high as 1,652 degrees Fahrenheit (900 degrees Celsius)

A cold-air scoop in the lower front fascia helps feed the supercharger and the Hellcat engine’s 92-mm throttle body.

Two high-flow variable pressure fuel pumps feed the high-performance demands of the Hellcat engine.

The Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat’s exhaust system has been tuned to deliver the throaty, aggressive sound that lets bystanders know this three-row muscle car is something special and distinctly Dodge. The changes include the addition of a 260-millimeter crossover X-pipe, the largest X-pipe in the SRT lineup, to the twin-pipe exhaust.

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About the Author

Written work on dsf.my. @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.



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