2011-Charger.jpgby Patrick Rall

    As summer road trip season is upon us, the folks at AAA have announced their top new models for road trips and among the list are the 2011 Dodge Charger and the all new 2011 Dodge Durango.  The Charger received an extensive refresh inside and out for 2011 while the Durango is a completely new model – with both of these vehicles benefitting from the 3.6L Pentastar V6 and the 5.7L Hemi V8.

    The 2011 Dodge Charger features a new exterior that is a gorgeous
    improvement on the previous generation of the muscle 4-door Dodge
    sedan.  The front end received some styling tweaks to make it more
    aggressive with new scalloping on the hood and doors paying homage to
    the vintage Charger.  Finally, the 2011 Charger sports an incredible new
    LED taillight that encompasses the entire width of the car’s rear end. 
    However, being a great road trip car is more about interior and drive
    quality then great looks.

    2011-charger-interior.jpgWhen the Dodge engineers were working on the interior of the 2011
    Charger, they didn’t look to other cars in a similar price class;
    instead they laid out the new interior based on luxury brands like Audi and
    Lexus.  The result is a roomy, luxurious interior with soft-touch
    surfaces throughout the cabin providing for an incredibly comfortable
    experience.  On top of the revised seats and armrest areas being
    improved to bolster driver and passenger comfort, the 2011 Charger
    offers a state of the art sound system and plenty of leg and elbow room
    for a family of five.

    Of course, there are also the fuel efficient engines of the 2011 Dodge
    Charger with the new 3.6L Pentastar V6 offering 292 horsepower and 27
    miles per gallon on the open road.  This engine provides plenty of power
    for a road trip with impressive fuel economy to boot. But if the driver
    demands more power on their drive, there is also the 5.7L Hemi V8 option.  This
    tried-and-true V8 packs 370 horsepower and 395lb-ft of torque while
    using the Fuel Saver Technology (including the Multiple Displacement
    ) to yield 25 miles per gallon on the highway.  MDS shuts down 4 of
    the 8 cylinders in the Hemi to improve fuel economy when the full force
    of the Hemi isn’t needed – like when you are cruising down the highway
    on a family road trip.

    2011-durango.jpgThe 2011 Dodge Durango is an all-new SUV inside and out – with a new
    unibody construction allowing for weight reduction, and thus, better fuel
    economy from this brawny sport ute.  Inside, the new Durango offers
    plenty of room for a family of 5 with lots of cargo space in the back
    for luggage or the family dog.  Dodge has fitted the Durango with
    similar luxury level amenities, both in seat and panel surfaces, as well
    as high tech AV goodies like a premium sound system and rear
    entertainment package.

    2011-durango-interior.jpgThe 2011 Durango is available with its own variants of the 3.6L
    Pentastar V6 and the 5.7L Hemi V8.  The Durango’s V6 makes 290
    horsepower while reaching 23mpg while the 5.7L Hemi in the SUV makes
    360hp, 390lb-ft of torque and getting a respectable 20mpg on the
    highway.  Also, the Durango can tow 6,200lbs when equipped with the V6
    and 7,400lbs when fitted with the Hemi – so you can tow a travel trailer
    or even another vehicle on your family vacation.

    So, did AAA get their list right? Join the conversation at DodgeForum.com!