The Dodge Durango Hellcat Is Back For 2023

Fans of horsepower, practicality, and cats rejoice.

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Image for article titled The Dodge Durango Hellcat Is Back For 2023
Photo: Stellantis

It’s an interesting time to be Dodge right now. The brand has built itself around performance, muscular high-displacement V8s in a world that’s increasingly overrun with two-liter turbo-fours, but that can’t last forever. The company’s most performance-oriented cars, the Challenger and Charger, are already dead. What’s the brand to do?

If you guessed “stick a big engine in its single remaining vehicle,” you’re right. Dodge’s sole survivor, the Durango, is once again getting the supercharged 6.2-liter Hellcat engine that it had lost in 2022. Cue fanfare.

Image for article titled The Dodge Durango Hellcat Is Back For 2023
Photo: Stellantis
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Dodge claims 710 horsepower and 645 lb-ft of torque for the hopped-up seven-seater, enough to push the Durango Hellcat to sixty miles per hour in a claimed 3.5 seconds. Stellantis even says the SUV has a top speed of 180 mph and an NHRA-certified 11.5-second quarter mile time — that’s 1.64 seconds per seat, beating out even the fastest of single-seat Top Fuel dragsters.

Beyond the engine, the Durango SRT gets a few bonus bits to make owners feel special. Revised power steering and suspension, SRT drive modes, launch control with wheel hop mitigation, and Brembo calipers. Despite the brand’s encouragement to “Customize the Cat,” there’s no option to embroider cat ears onto the front headrests. Missed opportunity, really.

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Let me put little cat ears here, Stellantis, so that they line up with the driver and passenger’s heads when they sit down. Nya nya!
Let me put little cat ears here, Stellantis, so that they line up with the driver and passenger’s heads when they sit down. Nya nya!
Photo: Stellantis

Dodge claims an 8,700-pound tow capacity for the Durango Hellcat, which should be more than enough to haul a Miata and trailer to the track. The company says orders for the all-powerful grocery-getter will open next month, but didn’t mention when deliveries would start.

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Correction 8/16 12:01 PM: This piece originally said the Durango Hellcat’s trap speed was 180 mph. It has been updated to state that the vehicle’s top speed is 180 mph instead.