Sunday, October 20, 2013

First Drive: 2013 Dodge Dart GT

The Dodge Dart made its debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show. The new Dart is based on a slightly enlarged Fiat Compact platform. The Fiat Compact platform is used in the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, but is enlarged by 1.5 inches in width and with a 3.7 inch longer wheelbase. The Dodge Dart is a front-engine, front-wheel drive four door compact sedan. The last Dodge compact sedan was the Dodge Neon and Dodge Neon SRT-4, which were discontinued in 2005. I have driven the Dodge Dart back in 2012, one with a 2.0L I4 engine that produces 160 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. The Dart is also available with a turbocharged 1.4L I4 engine that produces 160 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. The Dart GT comes with a 2.4L I4 engine.  I recently went down to Helfman Dodge Chrysler Jeep RAM (professional new car sales team and great service) and took a 2013 Dodge Dart GT for a test drive. The Dodge Dart GT comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission. The version I drove came with a six-speed automatic transmission with Chrysler's Autostick that allows for clutchless manual shifting.

As far as the compact sedans go, the Dodge Dart has the most aggressive styling to it. The dart has sleek body lines and a beautifully shaped hood. The Dart GT has LED racetrack tailamps, black headlamp bezels, day light opening moldings, body color door handles, hyper black crosshair with black surround on the grill, and 18 inch aluminum wheels. These additions help enhance the Dart's exterior. The Dart is well equipped on the interior. The Dart GT includes a reverse camera, a 7 inch thin film transfer instrument cluster display, Chrysler's 8.4 inch Uconnect touch media center that includes AM/FM/Sirius XM radio, Bluetooth connectivity, climate control, and customized settings. The Dart GT also 10 airbags and the version I drove has blind spot and rear cross path detection. The version I drove also had Nappa leather seats with heated front seats and a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel. The Dart is spacious on the inside. The Dart boasts best-in-class shoulder and hip room plus more rear seat legroom and overall interior room than some mid-size cars. The Dart has a great interior and a roomy interior.

The Dart GT is powered by a 2.4L I4 engine that produces 184 hp and 171 lb-ft of torque. It goes from 0 to 60 mph in 8.3 seconds and reaches a top speed of 130 mph. With the 2.4L engine, the Dart feels faster and has better throttle response than the 2.0L version. It has better performance than most compact sedans. On the roads and highways, the Dart GT has a quiet, smooth ride. The Dart GT responds well when I turn the steering wheel. Prices for the Dart GT starts at $20,995, not including the $995 destination charge. The version I test drove cost $25,520, which includes a $995 destination charge. 

Overall, the Dodge Dart GT is a great value. It has good power and performance, especially for a compact sedan. The Dart GT also has a roomy interior with a great infotainment system. The Uconnect system is AOL Autos' 2012 Technology of the Year. The Dart GT benefits greatly from the Uconnect 8.4 system. Compared to other cars in its class, the Dart GT has one of the most power engines in its class and has best-in-class shoulder and hip room. Also, the Dart GT benefits from an aggressive styling. The leather seats and leather steering wheel give the Dart GT a luxurious feel. All this for starting at just under $22,000. The Dart GT is a great car at a great value. 

Photo was taken from the Helfman Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram website.
To see more car related articles, check out
Follow me on Twitter @CarJunkie713.

No comments:

Post a Comment