As the annual festival of mega-budget commercials—um, we mean, 2020’s Super Bowl LIV—kicks off, Dodge has lobbed a new ad onto the internet titled “House of Power.” The spot, narrated by Fast and Furious star Vin Diesel, appears to be cross-promotional and includes a reminder that the street-racing movie franchise’s latest installment, Fast 9, is coming soon. But we already knew about that—what’s new is the Durango SUV wearing Hellcat badges teased throughout the commercial.
To those not familiar with Dodge’s House of Power, such as it is, the Hellcat badge signifies the brand’s top-level, SRT-tuned products packing a mighty 700-plus-hp supercharged V-8. Currently available in the Dodge Challenger SRT coupe and the Charger SRT sedan, the Hellcat engine also is found in the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk and soon will find its way beneath the Ram 1500’s hood in a new TRX model.
So, it’s not surprising that Dodge might try and stuff the big V-8 into the Durango, its only other longitudinal-engine vehicle that doesn’t already offer it. (As awesome as a Hellcatted Grand Caravan or Journey might be, let’s be real—Dodge isn’t gonna find a way to shoehorn a V-8 sideways into those aging vehicles’ noses.) The Durango is mechanical cousins with the Jeep Grand Cherokee, so if the Hellcat fits in that SUV, it’ll fit in the Durango. Plus, Jeep and SRT spent a lot of time designing a beastly chain-driven all-wheel-drive transfer case that’d be able to handle the Hellcat’s earth-moving power without blowing up under the stress of four-wheel traction. FCA would get some added return on that investment were the setup to make it into another product.
In Dodge’s “House of Power” commercial, viewers can spot a few flashes of what appear to be a Durango, as well as a Durango’s front fender adorned with the Hellcat badge. These glimpses are interspersed unsubtly amongst a rash of Hellcat-powered Chargers and Challengers eviscerating their rear tires, along with a 2018 Challenger Demon pulling a wheelie at a drag strip. But why advertise a future Hellcat-powered SUV alongside Fast 9? Easy. Based on that movie’s trailer, we know that Vin Diesel’s character, Dominic Toretto, is now a family man. What better way to launch a high-powered Dodge SUV than with a movie character inextricably linked to the Dodge brand (thanks to his classic Challenger), one who can’t let go of insane horsepower even while needing a three-row crossover for dad duties?
For an idea of what the Durango SRT Hellcat might look like, here’s the currently available, three-row Durango SRT, which is powered by a 475-hp 6.4-liter V-8:
The post 700+HP Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat Previewed In “Fast 9” Crossover Ad appeared first on MotorTrend.