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    2008 Dodge Durango SLT 4X4

    Just bought this 2008 Dodge Durango SLT 4X4.

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    At CAD$2,000, it was an exceptional deal. We'll use it until I get my 2008 Chrysler Aspen back on the road, and then we'll sell it. As it is, it is worth CAD$3,000-$4,000, but the seller was desperate to sell it.

    Seller bought it for $2,700 plus 15% tax, then paid $400 to get the front brakes rebuilt to pass the safety inspection. Shortly after that he got done for a DUI and lost his license. His wife refused to drive it as it was too big for her, so he had to sell it so he could get a small car for his wife to drive. Advertised if for $3,300 (a really good price for a vehicle with a full 2 years inspection), and nobody even inquired. Progressively lowered the price until I saw it at the "buy it this week for $2,000 or exchange for a small car" stage.

    Originally ordered by Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Ontario, it's not quite the "poverty pack" SXT model with steel wheels, but an entry level SLT ordered with a standard set of Enterprise Rent-A-Car options (Hemi, 4x4, heavy duty suspension, entry level 4 speaker audio system, and basic 3 row/7 passenger fabric seating with fabric guard). I suspect Enterprise would have ordered the SXT model if the Hemi was an option in that model. It has a shade over 235,000kms on it. It's the first Durango I've seen without a towing hitch.

    Other than the 3.55 differential ratio in the Durango, the drive line is identical to the one in my 2008 Chrysler Aspen (my Aspen has 3.92 ratio for towing). The Durango and Aspen share frame, floor plan, and body structure, but of the exterior stuff, other than the glass, there appear to be just 3 identical external body panels (both front doors and the tailgate). The interior is pretty much the same other than the quality of the materials, trim, and options fitted.

    2 yearly safety inspection wax done at the end of May, and it won't need to be reinspected for 21+ months. The EGR valve needs to be looked at, but that's it for mechanical issues. Needs a bit of work to neaten up some recent (seller's) rust repair work to the usual places that the Durango body work is prone to rusting (rear wheel arches, below the fuel filler, line from arches to rear above bumper, and sills below doors).

    It came with a set of P265/60R18 Toyo G-02plus studless winter tires with about 75% tread left on 18x8 factory alloy wheels, and an unmounted set of P265/60R18 Toyo H/T summer tires, with about 60% tread left. One wheel is missing a TPMS sensor, but that's an easy fix. I'll most likely replace the 18" wheels and tires with some 17" wheels and tires I have available. Even on an identical overall diameter wheel/tire combination, the extra 1/2 inch of rubber between the wheel and the road is worth its weight in gold on the badly potholed roads in the area. I have a 50% used set of P265/65R17 tires and an unused set of 17x7 wheels that will work well together, but I also have an set of oversize set of 70% remaining LT285/70R17 tires already fitted on a set of 17x8 wheels that I picked up very cheaply. Either set would work fine on the Durango, but the oversized LT285/70R17 tires would be a better option and should improve the resale value of the rig.
    James

    Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



    Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


    1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
    2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
    2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
    2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

    #2
    seems like a lot of car for the $$$, but it is a powerfully ugly mo fo though.
    .... because every driver experiences the destructive potential of the effortless surge of power available through the smallest of body movements.

    Dr Hoon
    .

    DrNick is king!!!! No, Mark Webber is now! Long live the king!... hold on a minute mate, Ricci is in charge now

    Comment


      #3
      I happen to like their version of ugly, though they do look better in black than in the lighter colours. The front end styling "refresh" for the 2007 model cleaned up the look a bit, but everything back of the firewall was unchanged.

      The first generation Durango was little more than a Dakota with a wagon body grafted on. That being said, you can't argue with the fact that the styling team for the second generation Durango most likely received the brief to take the Dakota/RAM front end styling and graft it onto a mini van, and then dump the lot onto a custom 4x4 chassis/floor pan.

      We're currently searching for a good 2007-2008 Chrysler Pacifica AWD for nopics. Same vintage and pretty much a slightly scaled down Durango/Aspen.
      James

      Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



      Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


      1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
      2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
      2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
      2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

      Comment


        #4
        Done about 1700 km in the Durango since I bought it almost 3 weeks ago. Haven't done a second tank fill yet to get an accurate fuel economy reading, but my fuel use logging software has computed an estimate of 13.5-14.0 litres/100km based on the gauge reading after partial fills of the big 102 litre tank, and I'm happy with that.

        The suspension feels a bit tighter than the Aspen, but I suspect the shocks on Durango are in far better shape than the ones on the Aspen. Even so, it suffers from what is referred to as the "2nd Generation Shuffle" on bumpy corners when the back end does a little dance if it's lightly loaded. All the 2nd Generation Durango/Aspen models do that unless you fit upgraded rear shock absorbers (Bilstein 24-139113 Monotube are the recommended fix for this). It feels like it could do with a wheel alignment, and the wear pattern on the front tyres indicates that it might need the toe-in looked at.

        I have plans for 46mm Bilstein Monotubes on the front and rear of the Aspen, but the Durango will only be getting upgrades if it's 100% necessary for our immediate use or will assist in its resale value. A tow hitch will probably go on, but other than maintenance and repairs, and doing a wheel/tyre shuffle between the Durango, the Aspen, and my stock of extra wheels/tyres for the Aspen, that'll be it. It's not intended to be a keeper.


        James

        Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



        Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


        1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
        2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
        2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
        2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

        Comment


          #5
          Got to get a valuer to look at the Durango.

          Went to do all the transfer paperwork which includes paying the 15% HST (harmonized sales tax - a mix of federal tax and provincial tax) on the purchase price. Unfortunately the province has a book valuation on every vehicle, and will charge you the tax on the greater of their "book value" or the purchase price. I paid $2000, so the tax should have been $300 ... their book value was $5000, so they wanted $750 in tax. My only option is to pay for a valuer to apraise the vehicle, and if he comes up with a lower figure, then I pay the greater of his valuation or the purchase price.

          The only independent valuer in the area died 8 weeks ago. Supposedly I can get it done at any licensed auto dealer, but they tend to be a bit pissed that you didn't buy a vehicle from them and up value the vehicle out of spite.
          James

          Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



          Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


          1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
          2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
          2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
          2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

          Comment


            #6
            Covered a bit less than 5,000 kms in the Durango since I got it, and last week I did the first full fill-up since the initial full fill-up when I bought it (no pics is one of these people that believes vehicles should run close to empty and then you put $20 in it when the low fuel light comes on ... drives me nuts).

            Fuel consumption worked out to 13.9 litres/100 km. I've been feathering the throttle a lot to keep the consumption down, but that's not bad for a Hemi engined, full time AWD SUV on soft winter grade tyres.
            James

            Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



            Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


            1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
            2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
            2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
            2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by JamesB View Post
              Got to get a valuer to look at the Durango.

              Went to do all the transfer paperwork which includes paying the 15% HST (harmonized sales tax - a mix of federal tax and provincial tax) on the purchase price. Unfortunately the province has a book valuation on every vehicle, and will charge you the tax on the greater of their "book value" or the purchase price. I paid $2000, so the tax should have been $300 ... their book value was $5000, so they wanted $750 in tax. My only option is to pay for a valuer to apraise the vehicle, and if he comes up with a lower figure, then I pay the greater of his valuation or the purchase price.

              The only independent valuer in the area died 8 weeks ago. Supposedly I can get it done at any licensed auto dealer, but they tend to be a bit pissed that you didn't buy a vehicle from them and up value the vehicle out of spite.
              Made some inquiries and confirmed that I could get any licensed car dealer to do a valuation. There's a few dealers I know because I do the graphics for their ads in the publication I work for. Rang up one and he said sure ... $25 ... bring it in this afternoon.

              He did the valuation from his office chair looking out the window at the Durango in the parking lot ... asked a few questions about options/features ... sunroof (no), heated seats (no), electric seat adjuster (yes), cruise control (yes), air conditioning (yes), etc. "I can see the poor quality repairs to the bodywork rust from here ... any mechanical problems?"
              I said that the check light is on because the EGR solenoid has seized, and the exhaust is cracked because somebody put a solid piece where there's supposed to be a flex pipe, and it's missing a TPMS sender in one wheel."
              "how does $1,800 sound? You'll still have to pay tax on the $2,000 purchase price, but those government thieves won't get any more than the tax on what you paid for it"

              Half an hour later I was at the DMV equivalent and paid my $300 tax plus $13.20 processing fee. After a month and a half driving a technically unlicensed vehicle, it's now legal.

              Had a little financial windfall following the sale of my parents' house and their move into a care facility, so Sunday we're off to look at a car for nopics.
              James

              Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



              Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


              1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
              2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
              2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
              2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

              Comment


                #8
                I was wondering how you got on with the valuation. Good effort.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by elfturbomax View Post
                  I was wondering how you got on with the valuation. Good effort.
                  On the road for CAD$2,313.20. Vehicles are sold without plates, so I just transferred the plate from my Aspen that's off the road until I finish the suspension/bearings/brakes/exhaust work on it and then put the Durango up for sale. Still got about 6 months left on my plate, then it's $172 to renew it for another 2 years.
                  James

                  Nothing says unprofessional job like wrinkles in duct tape.



                  Nova Scotia Lasers - LASER engraving


                  1989 Jaguar XJ-S V12 (under funded project vehicle)
                  2008 Chrysler Aspen Limited (minivan on steroids - on blocks being repaired)
                  2008 Dodge Durango SLT (another minivan on steroids - the daily)
                  2003 Land Rover Discovery SE7 (rusted out money pit project)

                  Comment

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