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  • Cost-Effective Modifications on a 2008 Dodge Durango - Web Exclusive

Cost-Effective Modifications on a 2008 Dodge Durango - Web Exclusive

Outfitting a 2008 Dodge Durango with smart visual cues and power adders

Harley CamilleriMay 23, 2012
Photo 2/35
As some of you are well aware, we awarded the 2008 Dodge Durango our coveted SUV of the Year award at the time of testing. One of the issues with the long term test vehicles provided us by the manufacturers is the inability to do any modifications to said vehicle. We managed to run down a healthy and clean used example allowing us to show you what can be done with one of these fun and versatile SUVs. Our unit is a 2WD with a PowerTech 4.7L V-8 under the bonnet, factory rated at 235hp and 300 lb-ft of torque. However, those numbers are at the crank, so we will be running the Durango on the dyno to see how our before and after figures come out at the wheels.

With an open book to do whatever we pleased, we brainstormed a ton of ideas and ran down plenty of scenarios. After the dust settled, the decision was made to bring this mid-size performer up to a respectable and streetable trim without going overboard. What could be done by most owners with minimal effort and still be easy on the wallet should you be completely unable to do any of the labor yourself? With K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stupid) running through our collective brains, we sought help from the pros. True Flow was sourced for one its high-flow intake conversions and Gibson exhaust pulled an aluminized exhaust from its inventory. On the outside, we contacted E&G Classics for a stainless mesh grille to replace the stocker and Tom McWeeney of Kustoms Inc. used paint from PPG to color the door handles and rear hatch trim for a matching fashion statement. Wheels and tires were also included in our makeover, so we went to the local internet ads for a used set. Follow along as we dress up the Durango with more sense than cents.
Photo 3/35   |   01. True Flow has a high flow air intake system for the 4.7L V8 Durango that significantly outflows the factory piece while still retaining the Dodge’s original air box.
Time Frame: One day, with the exception of the Kustoms Inc. paint which took two days.

Degree Of Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Tools Needed: 9/16”, ½” and 13mm wrenches, hand-held drill, Phillips screwdriver, 13/16” socket and torque wrench, floor jack and HVLP paint gun.

Parts Used:
E&G Classics 1103-1102-07 grille … $221.25
True Flow 30505 intake … $295.26
Gibson 316593 exhaust … $530.18
Boss Motorsports 304 wheel … $300.00 (each)
Nitto 285/45R22 NT420S tire … $260.00 (each)
Painted handles and trim … labor rates vary
Photo 4/35   |   02. This is the induction system as it comes off the factory assembly line. It has plenty of sound-deadening chambers to slow the air from getting where it wants to be. After uncoupling the Inlet Air Temperature (IAT) sensor, it was a snap to remove.
Photo 35/35   |   Closing Thoughts Although the 4.7L PowerTech V-8 performs admirably, it is no powerhouse. With that in mind the nearly 10 horsepower and 15 lb-ft of torque added by the True Flow intake and Gibson exhaust are noticeable. Gibson prefers to improve both power and sound, and the Superflow muffler in our kit sounds just a bit louder than factory with a nice bass tone to it. It’s just enough to be noticeable and ideal for your everyday driving needs. Since the intake is still breathing from the stock air box, it retains all its over-engineered factory conveniences plus the benefit of a direct path of air now; all the power with no suction noises under hood. With Tom McWeeney of Kustoms Inc’s handy paintwork, our Dodge can now roll down any boulevard not looking the under-optioned sibling it is. And the Boss wheels wrapped in Nitto tires bring not only looks, but also a nice jump in performance. Corners can now be handled without all the excitement of the stock sidewalls nearly folding in half. Driving down the freeway is great too; the Nitto tires are night and day difference in the noise department. All in all we managed to keep a low budget, add smart options, and do it all for a low price that brought high driving value to the Durango.

2015 Dodge Durango Specifications

VIEW ALL
Fair Market Price $30,143
MSRP $30,495
Editors' Overall Rating
Mileage 17 City / 25 Highway
Engine 3.6L V6
Horse Power 290 hp @ 6,400 rpm
Torque 260 ft lb of torque @ 4,800 rpm
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2015 Dodge Durango

Fair Market Price
$30,143
Editors' Overall Rating
Basic Specifications
MSRP: $30,495
Mileage: 17 / 25
Engine: 3.6L V6
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