2013 Dodge Dart: 2013 Dodge Dart Review and Prices - Consumer Guide Automotive
Published Wednesday, 21 March, 2012 by Jimmy Anderson.
2013 Dodge Dart Review and Prices by Chris Poole 14 Inside This Article 1.├? 2013 Dodge Dart Review and Prices The 2013 Dodge Dart, the replacement for the Dodge Caliber, made its debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show. The ┬?┬?40-mpg┬?┬? compact car promised by the Fiat-Chrysler alliance is coming soon to replace the Dodge Caliber. With Italian brio inherited from a sporty Alfa Romeo, the Dart should be causing much buzz. Some thought Dodge's new compact would be dubbed Hornet, but Dodge has decided to go with Dart, a name used on well-respected Dodge compacts in the past. What We Know About the 2013 Dodge Dart The highly symbolic first joint-venture vehicle from the Fiat-Chrysler alliance is heading to showrooms as the 2013 replacement for the Dodge Caliber compact car. Essentially a restyled, reengineered version of the sporty front-wheel-drive Alfa Romeo Giulietta 4-door hatchback, the new U.S.-built model will be the 2013 Dodge Dart. The 2013 Dodge Dart will demonstrate whether Fiat-Chrysler can deliver fuel-efficient small cars that will be popular--and profitable--in a highly competitive market that already offers many worthy choices. But though expected for over two years, the Dart is not one of the industry├ó┬?┬?s worst-kept secrets, because it wasn'┬?┬?t a secret in the first place. By way of background, Italy├ó┬?┬?s Fiat Auto successfully lobbied to lead Chrysler Group LLC out of bankruptcy by taking over management duties and sharing its small-car technology in exchange for a 20-percent share of the American automaker. Chrysler'┬?┬?s creditors, including the U.S. and Canadian governments, also agreed to let Fiat increase its stake--again with no money down--by meeting three ┬?┬?performance milestones.┬?┬? Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne delivered on the first two with dispatch, setting up U.S. production of the fuel-efficient 1.4-liter engine that powers the 2012 Fiat 500 subcompact car, and expanding Chrysler├ó┬?┬?s overseas sales base by adding select Chrysler models (or variations) to Fiat'┬?┬?s worldwide dealer network. A U.S.-built ┬?┬?40-mpg compact car┬?┬? was the third milestone, hence the 2013 Dodge Dart, which may begin go-slow pilot production toward the end of 2011 at Chrysler'┬?┬?s Belvidere, Illinois plant. Meantime, Fiat paid off its government loans six years ahead of schedule and exercised a separate stock-purchase option to claim 53.5 percent of Chrysler as of June 2011. This will rise to about 58 percent if the Dart earns the stipulated 40-mpg EPA highway fuel-economy rating. The rest of Chrysler still belongs to the United Auto Workers Union health-care trust that was set up in 2007, ironically with an eye to averting a Chrysler bankruptcy.