• Durango Special Service aimed at police, fire, other fleets
  • Offers customizable cargo area, heavy-duty brakes
  • V6 is standard; HEMI V8 optional; sales start later this year 

There's a new Dodge Durango aimed at police departments, fire stations and other fleet buyers. Dodge recently revealed the so-called Durango Special Service, which offers several unique features to prepare it for fleet duty. 

The biggest changes to the fleet-only Durango come inside. That's where the SUV features a new customizable cargo area, likely designed to carry gear for police officers, firefighters and other workers. Further interior revisions include a fleet-only headliner, under-floor storage bins and, on police models, wiring for a spotlight. 

Under the hood, the Durango Special Service will closely mirror its civilian counterpart. There's a standard 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, which makes 290 horsepower, and an optional 5.7-liter HEMI V8. That engine, the likely choice of most police departments, makes a whopping 360 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque. 

But that doesn't mean the Durango Special Service won't offer any mechanical upgrades. On the contrary, the SUV includes heavy-duty brakes and an engine oil cooler -- each designed to improve the Durango's performance in the most intense situations, such as police chases and responses to emergency calls. There's also a heavy-duty battery and a larger alternator for electronic gear, a heavy-duty water pump and a load-leveling rear suspension.

"The 2014 Dodge Durango Special Service model is a state-of-the-art resource for fleet customers," said Peter Grady, vice president of network development and fleet operations for Dodge's parent company, Chrysler. "It's been specifically designed for the demands and rigors of fleet duty." 

For options, the Durango Special Service will have only a few. There's a skid plate for 4-wheel-drive models, a reversing camera, a towing package and -- for fleets in cold climates -- an engine block heater. Chrysler is also offering its Uconnect infotainment system. 

If you're a fleet buyer looking to add a new SUV to your agency's lineup, Chrysler says the Durango Special Service will be on sale later this year. 

What it means to you: The 2014 Dodge Durango Special Service offers a new SUV choice to fleet buyers who need a vehicle with lots of room and lots of capability.

author photo

Doug DeMuro has a wide range of automotive industry experience, from work at a Ferrari dealership to a manager for Porsche North America. A lifelong car enthusiast, Doug's eclectic vehicle purchases include a Porsche 911 Turbo, an E63 AMG wagon, an old Range Rover and a Mercedes Benz G-wagen.

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