Dodge Durango Citadel is just that — a fortress

A lot of the SUVs I’ve tested recently have been compact models, but I finally got a chance to drive a bigger one. And it was the first time I’ve been behind the wheel of the Dodge Durango.

I was excited to test the Dodge Durango a few weeks ago, for a couple of reasons. First of all, it was the first time I’ve ever had the chance to drive Dodge’s flagship SUV. I’ve driven a bunch of Dodge and Ram vehicles over the years, but I’d never been in the Durango.

The model I got to drive was the ultra-deluxe Citadel trim package, which was the other reason I was looking forward to it. While the fancy stuff isn’t exactly necessary for getting to and from your favorite fishing hole or pheasant field, it sure makes the drive more enjoyable.

And the Durango Citadel didn’t disappoint. It’s named the Citadel for good reason. The definition of “citadel” is a fortress that commands a city, and this thing feels like you’re in command of all you see while you’re driving it. And with the premium sound system, the rear-seat entertainment center, and all the other fancy options you can get on it makes it feel like the command center it’s named after.

The various Durango models, from the $31,000 SXT through the $42,000 race-inspired R/T, come in either rear-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive. There isn’t a four-wheel-drive option, which is a shame, because with the Durango’s platform, it could be an incredible off-road vehicle. With the all-wheel-drive, it’ll get you down just about any forest road you want to take, but it could stand a little more ground clearance if you want to take the less-traveled paths.

But any of the trim levels give you plenty of space for gear, or plenty of seats for all your hunting or fishing buddies, and at about 23 miles to the gallon, you can head for the hills more often.