The first Chrysler Group product to be built on a Fiat architecture is this Alfa Romeo Giulietta-based Dodge Dart compact four-door saloon, previewed ahead of its Detroit motor show debut.
The Giulietta’s Compact Wide architecture has been lengthened and widened to underpin the Dart and has been renamed to Compact US Wide. The Dart will be built in America at Chrysler’s Belvidere plant – the subject of a $600 million investment - next year as a 2013 model year car.
The Dart will be the smallest, most fuel-efficient model in Dodge’s range when it is launched. Power will come from the choice of three four-cylinder petrol engine options: a Fiat-supplied turbocharged 1.4-litre MultiAir and two new 2.0-litre and 2.4-litre ‘Tigershark’ units, the latter if which gets Fiat’s MultiAir technology.
The new Dart has been inspired by Dodge’s car of the same name from the 1960s, which was also a smaller entry-level model for the brand. Dodge claims the 2013 car “blends Alfa Romeo DNA with Dodge’s passion for performance”.
The teaser pictures reveals Dodge’s split grille at the front and full width LED lights at the rear, along with an integrated dual exhaust. Other features include four-wheel independent suspensions and 18-inch alloys, plus what Dodge claims is the the most aerodynamic body in its class.