The fight for dominance in the public service vehicle segment is on. Monday Chrysler introduced its new Dodge Durango Special Service SUV. The model, fitted to meet the needs of emergency services and law enforcement, is designed to compete directly with the Ford Police Interceptor Utility, based on the 2012 Explorer, and the Chevy Tahoe PPV.
Widest range of law enforcement choices
The Durango Special Service joins the other Chrysler law enforcement models to make it the automaker with the largest range of choices in public service vehicle classes.
Peter Grady, Vice President of Network Development and Fleet Operations, said:
“We’re incredibly excited to add the Dodge Durango Special Service to our line-up of law enforcement vehicles. Adding Durango to our current Dodge Charger Pursuit and Ram 1500 Special Service vehicles allows us to offer a full range of fleet sedan, SUV, and truck options to law enforcement and government agencies.”
A consumer Durango, plus
The Durango Special Service will come will all the standard bells and whistles of its consumer version cousin, along with some additions and fortifications for the call of service. It comes in rear or four-wheel-drive versions, packing either a 290 hp 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 or a 5.7-liter HEMI V8 with 360 hp. It has tougher brakes than the consumer model, a stronger water pump, an external engine cooler and 220-amp alternator to handle the enhanced electronics.
Inside the cabin
The interior lights are much much brighter than in consumer vehicles. The Durango Special Service also loses the third seat from the consumer model to create an 85 cubic foot area for cargo or police dogs. And even though most passengers in the second seat row will have their hands cuffed behind their backs, the backseat area has separate heating and air conditioning controls.
Durable and comfortable, says CEO
Reid Bigland, President and CEO of Dodge Brand, said:
“The standard Durango has several class-leading attributes, such as power, towing and a driving range of more than 550 miles, so it is a natural to become a great utility tool for law enforcement and general fleet customers. This Special Service version will no doubt be a major asset to any agency in need of a durable, yet comfortable, SUV.”
Not a chase vehicle
The designation “Special Service” means that the cop version of the Durango is not rated as a pursuit vehicle. It can not jump curbs, pivot on a dime or shake off powerful impacts. It is designed to be an an auxiliary vehicle in a police force or fire department fleet and is not for the major stunt work.