698-hp Hellcat-powered Dodge Durango is born from Mopar shop in Arizona

Article by Christian A., on September 26, 2017

Ever heard of a Dodge Durango Hellcat? Of course, no one has heard of a Durango Hellcat. This is because Dodge never developed or created such a model. In case you haven’t heard it too, there is a Durango powered by the same engine found in the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, courtesy of a custom Mopar shop near Phoenix, Arizona.

Even with the arrival of the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat remains a fiery proposition on the road. After all, it is powered by a monstrous engine – a supercharged 6.2-liter Hemi V8 mill – that could deliver 707 hp of max output and 650 lb.-ft. of peak torque. It is also the same engine that powers the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. Moreover, it is the same engine that serves as the core of the newly launched Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk mid-size SUV.

Regrettably, Dodge hasn’t decided to equip its own mid-size SUV with this engine from hell. The closest a customer could get for a high-performance version of the Dodge Durango is the one that has been tweaked by SRT. Created for the 2018 model year, the Dodge Durango SRT is tagged by the brand as the fastest, most powerful and most capable three-row SUV in America. It is powered by a 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine that delivers at most 475 hp of output and 470 lb.-ft. of torque. While this 6.4-liter V8 engine is already -- by all means – powerful, it pales in comparison with smaller displacement supercharged Hellcat mill.

But while Dodge might not have the intention to equip the Durango with the Hellcat engine, Plum Floored Creations of Arizona is more than willing. Work at the custom Mopar shop started after an owner of a 2012 Dodge Durango R/T decided to give the mid-size SUV the Hellcat-treatment. This model is powered by a 5.7-liter HEMI V8 providing 360 hp of output and 390 lb.-ft. of torque.

The project wasn’t a simple swap out. It could have been much easier if this Dodge Durango was a 2014 model or newer, since Dodge refreshed the current generation of the mid-size SUV on this model year. Durango models from 2014 have a different transmission and ECU setup from the 2010-2014 models. The Hellcat engine would be an easy match with 2014-present Durango units, but this would be somewhat incompatible with 2010-2013 models. This means that the client’s Durango R/T would have to be reworked just to complete the engine swap-out.

Thankfully, Plum Floored Creations obliged to do the extensive rework. First, the company replaced the stock 2.3-liter supercharger with a larger, 2.9-liter Whipple supercharger, which allowed the Durango's stock ECU to be retained. Durango models from 2014 don’t need this swap-out. Since the supercharger is now larger, the 356-T6 alloy 6.2-liter heads have to be CNC-machined. Moreover, Plum Floored Creations replaced the stock exhaust with a custom fabricated three-inch setup, with dual five-inch exhaust tips exiting the rear bumper.

Plum Floored Creations also replaced the stock transmission with a six-speed ATS Stage 3 unit and upgraded the brake system with Brembo six-piston front calipers four-piston rear calipers. To accommodate the larger calipers, the custom shop employed 22x10 aluminum wheels wrapped in 285/40 tires.

After all the work –including some visual tweaks -- the Hellcat-powered Dodge Durango now delivers 698 hp (520 kW) at the crank and 570 hp (425 kW) at the wheels.

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