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Archive for November, 2014


The Dodge Durango is one of the most well-known SUVs around, rated “Best in Class” in several categories. This is entirely unsurprising since it’s so much more than would be believed by just looking at it. While the immediate perception of this vehicle is one of power and force, it’s far more refined than it lets on. If you want to check one out for yourself, head to Chapman Dodge Las Vegas.

Recent Changes

There have been a lot of changes to this particular vehicle in recent years, mostly due to a concerted effort by Dodge to reach out to new markets and create an image of sophistication coupled with the ability to handle even difficult driving conditions. This is probably a good move on the part of the company and has really lead to a much better SUV.

The most obvious change has been the exterior alterations. The large grill on the front gives it an aggressive look, but the once hard edges have been rounded off and the headlight design improved significantly. It still looks fierce, but not in the blunt way it did before.

The addition of an 8-speed automatic transmission has also been a nice touch, improving the fuel efficiency and adding additional torque while driving.


The way that the Dodge Durango drives can be summarized with a single word: Control. When you get behind the wheel and start it up, it feels like the kind of SUV that you’re going to have to fight the whole time, but instead you’re given an easy ability to move, stop, and steer. It feels natural, for lack of a better term.

The way that it corners is also impressive. Unlike most SUVs, there’s no sense of rolling or tilting while making turns. Even taking tight corners at speed didn’t do much to shake the Durango, and you could even feel the center of gravity moving down while making the turn.

While backing up was a little difficult due to the high belt line, the rear view camera and 8.4 inch screen really went a long way toward alleviating that issue. It didn’t take more than a time or two to get used to the design, at which point even parallel parking became a breeze.


Safety is an important aspect of what makes the Durango a high quality vehicle. First of all, it earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s highest rating in four crash tests as well as very high marks in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s testing.

One of the best options for safety that the Durango offers is the forward-collision warning and mitigation system which allows the SUV to brake if it’s too close to another car. There’s also Cross-Path Detection, which prevents rear collisions very effectively. Finally, the optional blind spot monitor is remarkably accurate and easy to integrate into your driving habits.

There’s a reason the Dodge Durango is considered best in class so often these days: the company went to the effort to put together a truly great SUV. Stop by Chapman Las Vegas Dodge Chrysler Jeep to test drive one today, or check out our selection online.


Chrysler changed the way engines were perceived when they introduced what would be called the “HEMI” line in 1951. At the time, it was called the “Chrysler Firepower Engine” and was sold primarily based on its power, but soon the name changed to the nickname it had been given in the industry based on the hemispherical combustion chamber. And it drastically altered the way we saw engines. If you want to get your hands on a Dodge with a V8 HEMI engine, head to Chapman Dodge.

Design Elements

The reason for the hemispherical head is that it creates a highly efficient combustion chamber that not only produces minimal heat loss, but also allows for two large valves to be attached. While most other cylinders in engines include more valves, the HEMI is limited to these two, but not to its detriment. In fact, it only adds to the efficiency. Having one intake and one exhaust valve goes a long way toward creating what is referred to as “cross-flow,” allowing for a rapid exchange before and after the combustion process.

Part of the problem that engineers faced when designing the HEMI was that by creating a combustion chamber in that shape, they were losing a lot of the pressure necessary to give each piston the push it needed to move the vehicle. Essentially, it opened up a lot of unused volume, meaning that the explosion of igniting gas would have too much space to fill. The designers solved this by doming the top of the pistons, reducing that space and creating an easier movement in the engine.

The combination of hemispherical piston heads and combustion chambers ended up putting a lot more power behind every revolution, especially in the case of the V8.

Bringing the Modern V8 To Life

Since its inception, there has been a V8 HEMI to purchase, but there have been a number of changes that make the modern version even more powerful and efficient than before. Most of the alternations have been ways to change the operation of the engine under different driving conditions so that you’re always getting the most out of it. Luckily, you can pick up a great deal on a Dodge outfitted with a HEMI engine by heading to Las Vegas Dodge.

In 2009 the company introduced Variable Camshaft Timing technology to the engine. This revolutionary design employs an oil control valve directed at a special camshaft sprocket with a phasing device. By controlling the oil flow, it can alter the camshaft timing appropriately.

Similarly, Dodge HEMIs use an active intake manifold with a short runner valve. This makes it so that you are always getting the optimum torque and horsepower out of your engine by closing the valve at low RPMs, but opening it at higher engine stress in order to direct air flow into the center of the manifold.

The Dodge V8 HEMI is one of the most powerful engines available because it was so carefully designed. Every part is crafted to get the most efficiency out of the space it was given. Since its inception it has been pushing the industry to continue to strive for a little more, and as a result is one of the most popular engines today.