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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I try to learn as much as I can on the durango and I realised that there is some big differences between the 99 and the 00! The engin change, it pass from the 5.2 to the 4.7 and they change the front suspension to a rack and pinion. Is the direction more stiff with the rack and pinion or it is almost the same? I read that they have problem with the tie-rod end and ball joint, is the new design suspension still have the same problem? Is there other changes?

Thanx a lot!
 

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you'll like the 4.7 better than the 5.2. although it's more computer driven. get a tuner to bypass some of the restricted engine/ trans codes. the r&P is inherintly a cost saver and makes the vehicle a little lighter and easier to work on. I have the 99 d with steering box, I don't have issues. the 04 ram has R&P, I don't have any big issues, besides the hi pressure line likes to leak.
 

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the 5.2 in the durango is, to me, under powered. the 4.7 produces more hp and torque. the 5.2 works great in the truck, being that their lighter. I had the 5.2 in a 93 dak, and ran loops around friends, as soon as I put a heavy load in back or tow our 16ft travel trailer, it lugged. Don't get me wrong about the 5.2, it's a bullet proof engine.
 

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the 5.9 in the durango is kickin. especially w/ a tuner, i couldn't do any type of wheel spin, except in wet conditions, until I put in the tuner, now I can even hear 2nd gear chirps when I want to. I think the interior was changed in late 00 or 01. durangoclub dot com has a lot of info to search thru, too.
 

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It doesn't need a Hemi
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the 5.2 in the durango is, to me, under powered. the 4.7 produces more hp and torque.
Not to nit pick, but the 4.7 has more hp, but the 5.2 edged it out on torque by 5, I believe. Most likely from the longer stroke. The more I learn about the 4.7, the more I agree it is a very good engine.

However, I am still partial to the 5.9, which is good, because that is what is in mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'll ask it differently, is the 5.2 is better to tow then the 4.7 because the TQ peak is sooner and wich one is easier to modify?

Thanx!
 

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since the 4.7, both models, (their are 2 designs) came out, more aftermarket stuff is available. Alot of the stuff for the 5.9 are interchangable with the 5.2 externally. the 5.2 is phasing out of support, the market only keeps x amount of supply years before parts get hard to find. The 4.7 will be going some 20 years before the next design takes over. If i were you and your talk about towing, i'd look into the 5.9. but I don't know what weights your gonna pull, the 5.9 is good upto 7K properly equiped. I towed a 28' travel trailer through crosswinds and hills, white knuckle conditions, and never lost control. Granted I had sway control set to max and weight distribution bars installed.

As a side note, my friends father had an 06 ram qc w/ 4.7 and towed a 5000 # trailer 600 miles round trip quite a few times and never had an issue.
 

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Which engine you want really comes down to personal preference, and perhaps ODO miles and price. You can easily tow 5K with the 4.7 & 5.2L engines. I liked the 4.7L as it was smoother (when I test drove one way back when). I ended up going with the 5.9L for better towing & low end grunt (torque peaks @ 3200rpm). The 5.2/5.9 are somewhat simpler in design when compared to the DOHC 4.7L. If gas mileage is an issue, you should go with the 4.7.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the infos!

Other question, is the 4 speed a better transmission then the 5 speed? Wich one is stronger? Is the 4.7 reving at a lower speed then the 5.2 because it has a fifth gear or the gear is between 2 other gear (for exemple between the first and the second so the towing is better)? Is the fifth speed an evelution of the forth or it is juste an completely other tranny?

Thanx!
 

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the trans between the 2 are completely different, the 5.x trans is a 4 speed w/ lockout, the 4.7 is a 5 speeds and 2 lockout's, iirc.
 

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Thanks for all the infos!

Other question, is the 4 speed a better transmission then the 5 speed? Wich one is stronger? Is the 4.7 reving at a lower speed then the 5.2 because it has a fifth gear or the gear is between 2 other gear (for exemple between the first and the second so the towing is better)? Is the fifth speed an evelution of the forth or it is juste an completely other tranny?

Thanx!
The 545RFE has two overdrives, the top is a 0.67 ratio which lowers noise and engine rpm. I can't say if it helps with mileage or not as EPA ratings were the same when compared to the 46RE/44RE 4 speed transmissions. The 45RFE trans I believe has a 0.75 top gear ratio, so the 545RFE should help highway fuel economy. The RE series both have .69 overdrive ratio.

The major difference is that the 45/545RFE transmissions don't have bands that require regular adjustments such as in the RE series transmissions (44/46RE: 5.2L/5.9L). With regular maintenance the RE series will perform well. The 4.7L transmissions seem to be more reliable due to the gears (read: no bands) in the trans.

Oh, I believe the 545RFE was only available in 2003, 2000-2002 4.7L were bolted to the 45RFE four speed.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have couple quick question because I'm about to trade my 98 infiniti QX4 160000KM with a 01 Durango SLT+ 180 000Km, am I doing a good deal?

How can I check if there is no sludge in the engin? I taught of looking under the oil cap but it is a but far from the oil so I'm scared that if there is some slidge in the engin I won't be able to see it from under the oil cap!

Is the AWD a all time (there is alwaispower to the front wheel andto the back wheel) or a real time (thee is onely power to the rear wheel and when the cumputer se some sliping it send power to the front wheel)?

An is there ay partiular thing for the 01 to check?

Thanx a lot!
 

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I would not worry about sludge. Rumors get spread and sludge is no more of an occurance on the Durango that on any other vehicle if it has not been taken care of. If you have read items about under the 4.7 cap, the gunk that can appear there is not sludge. The 4.7 filler does not get warm enough to evaporate condensation and some emulsified oil may accumulate there but is not harmful.

The AWD system is not an intelegent system that shifts power. It is a fixed f/r torque split.
 

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Which engine you want really comes down to personal preference, and perhaps ODO miles and price. You can easily tow 5K with the 4.7 & 5.2L engines. I liked the 4.7L as it was smoother (when I test drove one way back when). I ended up going with the 5.9L for better towing & low end grunt (torque peaks @ 3200rpm). The 5.2/5.9 are somewhat simpler in design when compared to the DOHC 4.7L. If gas mileage is an issue, you should go with the 4.7.
The 4.7 is a SOHC, only one cam shaft per bank, 2 valves/cyl
 

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Oh, I believe the 545RFE was only available in 2003, 2000-2002 4.7L were bolted to the 45RFE four speed.
Correct. 2003 was the only 5 speed (545RFE). In reality, the only difference between the 45RFE and 545RFE is in the computer programming. Mechanically they are identical. When the 4.7L first came out, Dodge continued using the JTECH engine computer, which wasn't capable of controlling the transmission, so they added an external trans computer. In 2003, they came out with a new computer system, called NGC. NGC combined the functions of the engine computer and transmission computer into one box. If your engine computer has 4 connectors, its an NGC and you have the 545RFE. If it has 3 connectors and a separate tranny computer with one huge connector, you have the 45RFE. There were some late 2002 models that came equipped with the new computer and thus the 545RFE.

If you have a 2001 or 2002 with the 45RFE, it is possible to upgrade it to the 545RFE using a TCM out of a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Another thing worth noting is the (5)45RFE has 2 second gears, one if it's shifting up, one if it's shifting down. Under normal acceleration, it shifts from first (3:1) to second (1.67:1) and on to 3rd and overdrive as usual. If you're cruising down the road and stick your foot in it, it downshifts to second prime (1.5:1). This keeps the engine RPM in a more ideal location for quick acceleration and passing.
 
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