Funny, I have a 1997 Ram 1500 (168,000 miles), and the girlfriend has a 1999 Durango SLT (98,000 miles) neither one of which has given us any bit of a problem?
I bought this Durango new in '99 and have had numerous problems with it. I can't even start to list the electrical problems. I drove around for a year without the dash on so that I could get to various connectors quickly. Once it spent four weeks at the dealer's because none of the gauges worked. Never did fix it as one day the problem went magically away! Windows work intermittently.
The transmission has been slipping since it went out of warranty. 1 to 2 shift takes forever and will downshift back to first when given almost any amount of throttle. Engine doesn't like 6000 RPM!
Now it's water pump time. And..And...And...
This was my first Chrysler product in 31 years and it is my last.
Sorry I don't believe a lot of the problems cited here with Durango's and Mopar vehicles. I put 300,000 miles on a 1985 Dodge Caravan, still have a 1994 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4 x 4 with 290,000 miles on its original drivetrain, a 1999 Dodge Dakota 4 x 4 (essentially a Durango with a box) with 180,000 miles on its original driveline (same transfer case too) and a 1994 Dodge Spirit sedan with 190,000 miles on it. All vehicles have been very dependable and reliable and the last 3 are still in my driveway.
So if you are blowing out transfer cases there is likely 1 of 2 possible problems. The first is that you are one of the many who doesn't know how, when or why to engage the 4 x 4 transfer case and you are damaging it through a lack of knowledge. There are many people who run around in 4 wheel drive on dry pavement and then wonder why they have problems with transfer cases and driveshafts.
The second possibility is that you are getting shoddy repairs in which case don't blame the vehicle, blame the mechanic. There are lousy mechanics working for every different brand of car dealer all over the country.
These Durangos are an iffy matter. Some are good, zero problems, while others are plagued. Its about a 50/50 draw, too. My Durango started missing third gear a while back, the same day that I picked up my other car for it's transmission replacement. Other than that, I haven't had any problems with my Durango.
Like I said, you're rolling the dice with these rigs.
Well, I was also a long-time MoPar person (1964 Dodge 440, 1967 Chrysler Newport, 1969 Dodge Coronet, 1971 Dodge Charger, 1971 Plymouth Barracuda, 1973 Dodge Charger, 1974 Dodge Monaco, 1975 Dodge Charger, 1985 Dodge Ramcharger, as well as a series of Volarès), but the Durango seems to have too many consistent problems to ignore.
I had seriously considered buying one to replace the Ramcharger, but the consistent reports of bad ball joints and sludged engines or carbon-coated oil pickup screens leading to engine failure turned me off.
I lost a little faith in a company that could screw up the legacy of the indestructible 318. I could see replacing ball joints on a 15-year-old truck with 200,000 miles, or cleaning the oil pump pickup screen on an old beater, but not on a comparatively new vehicle with an asking price north of 15 grand (used).
Gotta say when it came to vehicle shopping, I went with a 2002 Explorer and dropped consideration of a Durango.