At the eighth annual New England Motor Press Association-hosted Winter Vehicle Competition, Dodge and the rest of its FCA US LLC sibling brands brought home more awards than any other manufacturer at the event. At the competition, the 2018 Dodge Durango earned the title of Official Winter SUV of the Year. There were also winners from Jeep and Ram with four top awards for FCA.
“The Durango has the ability to handle everything New England weather can throw at it,” said John Paul, NEMPA president. He noted that the spacious seating for seven and dynamic engine choices can satisfy just about any buyer on the hunt for a quality SUV. And the Durango’s ability to navigate roads less traveled in less-than-ideal conditions made it the clear choice for the NEMPA Official Winter SUV of the Year.
Jeep took home two awards: the Heritage Award went to the 2018 Wrangler and the Extreme Vehicle Award went to the 2018 Grand Cherokee Trackhawk. The 2018 Ram 1500 earned glowing remarks from NEMPA members too and took home top honors in the pickup truck segment.
NEMPA members evaluated a variety of vehicles from various manufacturers covering several categories. Journalists cycled through each vehicle throughout New England leading up to the official day of testing and scoring at NEMPA headquarters in Middleborough, Massachusetts in February.
For 2018, Dodge builds on the Durango’s proven performance, utility, and comfort with the new SRT model, appearance packages, and available soft-touch instrument panel.
Durango’s standard eight-speed automatic transmission pairs to the award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine rated at up to 295 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. These V-6-equipped models boast a 6,200-pound towing capacity. You could also upgrade to the 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine that produces a best-in-class 360 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque and plays a big part in its class-leading 7,400-pound towing capacity.
The latest technology includes a programmable digital instrument cluster, available class-exclusive 9-inch dual screen Blu-ray and DVD player, available Beats premium audio system, 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen radio with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, navigation, and a function to view trailer-mounted items through the rear-mounted camera.
The all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler delivers legendary off-road capability courtesy of two advanced four-wheel-drive systems, and, for the first time in the Wrangler’s history, a two-speed transfer case with full-time four-wheel drive and a 2.72-to-1 low-range gear ratio available on Sahara models. This new Selec-Trac full-time two-speed transfer case allows the driver to choose a setting and leave it there.
Inside, the heritage-inspired center stack features a clean, sculpted form that complements the horizontal dashboard design and sports a finish dictated by the model choice. A hand-wrapped instrument panel features a soft-touch surface with accent stitching on Wrangler Sahara models. Functional features, including climate- and volume-control knobs, media charging and connectivity ports, and engine stop/start control are all sculpted for quick recognition and are within reach.
The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk features a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine delivering 707 horsepower and 645 pound-feet of torque. Jeep designed this breakthrough engine using only the strongest, most durable materials. Its cast-iron block features water jackets between the cylinders for optimal cooling. A forged-steel crankshaft with induction-hardened bearing surfaces is so strong it can withstand firing pressures of nearly 1,600 psi – equal to five family sedans standing on each piston, every two revolutions.
The driver-focused interior features premium soft-touch materials, unique Light Black Chrome finishes, carbon fiber spears, and a 7-inch driver information display instrument cluster. The instrument panel center stack with new 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen features Trackhawk-exclusive Performance Pages that showcase an array of performance timers and gauge readouts, including a new engine dynamometer screen that measures real-time horsepower, torque, and transmission gear. The dynamometer screen also includes a new snapshot function for owners to save their readouts on a USB so you can show off your stats.
The 2018 Ram 1500 boasts many segment-exclusive features in areas most important to truck buyers. Supporting best-in-class fuel efficiency with exclusive EcoDiesel V-6 engine. The ram accomplishes class-leading ride and handling with a unique link-coil rear suspension system with optional air suspension. The Ram 1500 retains its ruggedly handsome appearance with an award-winning interior, exterior design aesthetics, and segment-leading technology.
Exclusive features like Ram Box bedside storage, hidden bins, and a flat-load floor offer unique solutions for cargo. This versatile pickup is available in 11 different trim levels, so the Ram 1500 has a full-size pickup for everyone. Every Ram 1500 truck benefits from content designed to match each model’s unique style.
Stop by today to test drive any of our in-stock award-winning vehicles. Whether you need an SUV to trek through the long winter drives or a pickup to manage year-round tasks, Garber Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram has a vehicle for you. See our online inventory now to shop for your new vehicle. Or make an appointment for assistance deciding which kind of car, truck, or SUV is right for you.
Images courtesy of FCA Media