12 MONTH CAR REVIEWS: 2013 Dodge Dart SXT - Fall In Michigan

November 21, 2013
2013 Dodge Dart Profile
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Long-Term 2013 Dodge Dart Update - FALL 2013 (2 OF 2)
Miles to Date: 20,177
"I found myself double- and triple-checking before changing lanes or merging on the highway."
The 2013 Dodge Dart spent its tenth month in our care within the state of Michigan. At this point, we've come to terms with most of the Dart’s virtues and downfalls, and now we’re putting it to work as a pleasant day-to-day commuter.
Graphic designer John Kalmar spent a week behind the wheel of the 2013 Dodge Dart in October, crisscrossing the state in search of Michigan State football victories (they won), beverages and donuts from Uncle John's Cider Mill (judged delicious), and live music in Grand Rapids. Kalmar enjoyed his time in the Four Seasons Dodge but complained about the meager rearward visibility afforded by the Dart's fat C-pillars and rising beltline. Without any blind-spot warning systems on board, you need to be extra careful when dicing through traffic.
"I found myself double- and triple-checking before changing lanes or merging on the highway," he said.
Associate editor Greg Migliore, who has a 45-plus-minute daily highway commute, agrees that the Dart's blind spots are large but says it's far from one of the worst compact cars in terms of visibility. He reports that the 2013 Dodge Dart is an excellent highway commuter, a sentiment that echoes the views of nearly everyone who has taken the Dodge on a long trip.
Later, associate web editor Joey Capparella took the helm and used the 2013 Dodge Dart to drive to a concert in metro Detroit. With four friends on board, he was glad the Dart is one of the roomier "compact" sedans currently on the market.
"They had plenty of legroom but the back seat is only just wide enough for three adults," Capparella reported.
Next up was road test editor Chris Nelson's girlfriend, Kimmy Hay, who wanted to compare the white 2013 Dodge Dart to her white 2012 Dodge Avenger SXT. She took issue with the Dart's rounded, bulbous shape and also said she preferred the steering feel in her Avenger. Yet Hay conceded that she liked the Dart's intuitive touchscreen navigation system and gutsy turbocharged four-cylinder engine. She has no plans, however, to swap her Avenger for a Dart any time soon.
As our yearlong test winds to a close, we hope to take the Dart on a few last trips to get the most out of our time with the smallest Dodge.
2013 Dodge Dart Profile
Body style 4-door sedan
Accommodation 5-passenger
Construction Steel unibody
Base price (with dest.)$18,790
As tested $23,195
Engine 16-valve SOHC turbocharged I-4
Displacement 1.4 liters (83 cu in)
Power 160 hp @ 5500 rpm
Torque 184 lb-ft @ 2500 rpm
Transmission 6-speed dual-clutch automatic
Drive Front-wheel
EPA Fuel Economy 27/37/31 (city/hwy/combined)
Steering Electrically assisted
Lock-to-lock 2.7 turns
Turning circle 37.5 ft
Suspension, Front Strut-type, coil springs
Suspension, Rear Multilink, coil springs
Brakes F/R Vented discs/discs
Wheels 17-inch aluminum
Tires Continental ContiProContact
Tire size 225/45R-17 94H
Headroom F/R 38.6/37.0 in
Legroom F/R 42.2/35.2 in
Shoulder room F/R 58.2/56.1 in
Wheelbase 106.4 in
Track F/R 61.7/61.6 in
L x W x H 183.9 x 72.0 x 57.7 in
Passenger capacity 97.2 cu ft
Cargo capacity 13.1 cu ft
Weight 3242 lb
Weight dist. F/R xx/xx %
Fuel capacity 15.8 gal
Est. fuel range 490 miles
Fuel grade 93 octane (premium unleaded)
STANDARD EQUIPMENT 2.0-liter DOHC I-4 engine 6-speed manual transmission Stability and traction control Variable intermittent windshield wipers Remote keyless entry 4-wheel disc brakes Roll mitigation Hill-start assist Power windows Manual 6-way driver's seats 17-inch aluminum wheels Projector fog lights Black chrome headlight bezels Body-color grille crosshairs Dual rear exhaust exits Cruise control Leather-wrapped steering wheel Premium cloth interior Trip computer
1.4-liter SOHC turbocharged I-4 engine $1,300 Underbody aerodynamic treatment Active grille shutters Bright exhaust tips 140-amp alternator
6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission $1,100
Popular Equipment group $495 Vehicle information center and trip computer Cruise control Leather-wrapped steering wheel Tire pressure monitoring system Front seatback pockets 12V power outlet Sun visors w/vanity mirrors Illuminated cup holders
8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen group $595 Illuminated instrument panel surround iPod control Remote USB port and SD card slot Single-disc CD player
Uconnect 8.4 w/navigation $494 Automatic headlights
SiriusXM travel and real-time traffic w/one-year trial subscription $--- Rearview camera
LED "racetrack" taillights $225
SiriusXM satellite radio w/one-year trial subscription $195

Long-Term 2013 Dodge Dart Reviews to Date:

FALL 2013
2013 Dodge Dart SXT - Fall In Michigan
WRAP-UP
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Comments

Photo Gallery

  • A quiet month in Michigan for our 2013 Dodge Dart SXT.
  • The Dart's rearward visibility still draws criticism.
  • The Dodge Dart only has two more months in our fleet.
  • One driver predicts taillights will soon look "dated."
  • We all agree: The Dart is at its best on the highway.
  • Don't try this at home.
  • Uconnect touchscreen is one of the best in the business.

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