The new Durango Adventurer model makes it easy to rid the SUV of sand, water, and dirt – which is nice for all types of outings, from a trip to the beach to a trip to the ballpark. Adventurer has easy-to-clean reversible slush mats and a washable cargo liner with built-in organizer. Other Durango Adventurer features include satin silver tubular side steps (with circle-shaped pads for added traction when using the side steps to get in and out of the SUV), and a Thule roof rack. There’s plenty of passenger space with three rows of seating. (The third row is a 50/50 split fold seat.) Second row passengers have their own climate controls, DVD entertainment system, and reclining seats.

In 2005, any Durango model that’s fitted with the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 (producing 335 horsepower at 5200 rpm and 370 pounds-feet peak torque at 4200 rpm) is also fitted with an electronically modulated clutch control. When the 5.7-liter HEMi V8 is mated with a 5-speed automatic transmission, the 4 x 2 SUV puts out per gallon fuel estimates of 14 city/19 highway. During a 520 mile/one-week test drive, the Durango proved to be a very enjoyable way to travel as long as no one depressed the button for rear side windows – which provoked a nasty sound and vibration. Durango has splendid outside views (aided by 5-inch by 7-inch side mirrors), a nice ride, and it handles exceptionally well. MSRP of Durango SLT 4x2 is $29,755. The Adventurer package is an additional cost.