Posts Tagged ‘Dodge’

Chrysler Reinvents the Minivan with the new 2017 Pacifica

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The minivan segment is dying a slow death, but Chrysler isn’t ready to throw in the towel just yet. With minivan sales down over 60% since the turn of the century, buyers are gravitating towards image friendly SUVs, even though functionality is compromised. Soccer moms are choosing image over practicality when carting their kids around throughout the day.

Chrysler is changing all that today with the new 2017 Pacifica, which is loosely modeled after the Chrysler 700C concept from 2012. Innovative isn’t a word to describe the new minivan set to challenge the SUV market. Revolutionary is the word that’s being thrown around here at the Chrysler press conference in Detroit.

Detroit is the perfect venue to unveil this new minvan, as manufacturing of the new Pacifica will be just across the river at the Windsor Assembly Plant, where they still build the Dodge Caravan. Somewhere down the line, the Caravan will most likely be discontinued as Chrysler moves the minivan upscale, and by doing so, revitalizing the segment and grabbing market share for Chrysler.

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Over 121,000 Dodge Darts Recalled

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More than 121,000 Dodge Dart sedans manufactured between 2013 and 2014 are being recalled by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. There is a problem with the vehicle’s braking system which could increase the risk of accidents. Details indicate the recall is due to a flawed vacuum tube which decreases the performance of the vehicle’s brake-assist system.

Fiat Chrysler states “some 2013 and 2014 models may have a brake-booster vacuum-tube routing that inadvertently allows oil to reach the brake booster diaphragm, if ever the vacuum-pump check valve fails. Oil may degrade the diaphragm and lead to a loss of brake-assist – a feature that helps reduce stopping distances.” Owners will notice that it takes much more effort to push the brake pedal and possibly a “pop sound consistent with a vacuum leak”. The braking system itself is not affected, just the brake assist system.

The recall is specific to both 2.0L and 2.4L equipped Dodge Darts manufactured between 2013 and 2014 built before January 24, 2014. So far, seven accidents have been recorded and two injuries have been associated to this recall.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will issue a recall notice to owners with further instructions on taking their vehicles in to their local dealers for the recall service. Owners can expect the service to include an inspection and replacement of the faulty vacuum tube. Additionally, the vacuum pump, brake booster, and master cylinder could possibly be replaced.

If you own a vehicle that falls within the manufacturer date range, or if you aren’t sure if your vehicle is affected by this recall, you are encouraged to call your local dealers or Fiat Chrysler’s Customer Information Center at 800-853-1403.


Dodge, Fiat, Jeep And Chrysler At SEMA 2015

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Headlining the Mopar booth at the 2015 SEMA Show was definitely the Dodge Challenger GT AWD Concept with its wide fender flares to fit the massive 20×11 and 20×10 wheels, and yeah you read that right. The GT AWD Concept combines raw muscle car power with the confidence and traction of all-wheel-drive proving that yes, you can have your cake and eat it too. That extra traction is needed to as the 5.7L HEMI V8 under the hood has been upgraded with the Scat Pack 3 Performance Pack which adds 75 horsepower and 44 lb-ft of torque.

While not quite as well rounded as last year’s SEMA booth there were still a few cars worth a look in the booth. The Chrysler 300 Super S dropped on a set of factory coilovers and Chrysler 200 S Mopar showed off the customization options available for Chrysler vehicles. In addition, a pair of Fiat 500 concepts, the Chicane and Mobe show off the personalization options available to Fiat owners. Rounding out our coverage is the Dodge Ram Rebel X which appears to be a Dodge Ram with the entire Dodge parts catalog bolted on covered in a paint job they call Copper.

Check out the pictures of the Mopar Booth in our gallery.

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2015 Ram 1500 Rebel

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Whenever I hear the word Rebel, I repeat “Rebel Without a Cause” in my head. I think it was a movie. A movie I have never seen. It starred James Dean who I would suggest was a car guy. He was cool.

Unlike James Dean, this truck is not cool. Much like the movie, I would like to un-see this monstrosity. The Ram Rebel is a truck that sits between the Sport and the Outdoorsman (as if Ram didn’t have enough trim levels already (9!!)). It sports standard air suspension, gets a 1 inch lift and some knobby 33″ Toyos as standard fare. You can get it any way you want with the Quad cab. 4X4, 4X2, V6, or V8. No EcoDiesel though. I guess there was a limit.

What is striking is how “look at me” this truck is. There is no mistaking what you are driving when rolling down the street in this vehicle. Massive RAM name on the tailgate and the grill. And get this, the seats have tread marks!

I think that this is Chrysler’s attempt to get more aftermarket dollars right at the factory. They are not only competing with the aftermarket, but also their own dealers. I don’t know how many times I have driven by a Ram dealer and see a brand new 1500 or 2500 jacked up to the sky waiting for someone to overpay for it.

It’s a perfect truck for roughneck country Alberta. All they need to do is include some white sunglasses and a coupon for a tribal tattoo at the local parlor.

So get out your Ed Hardy hat and your Von Dutch shirt and head over to a Ram dealership round about August for your fill of Rebel.

Live shots from Detroit by a guy with frosted tips who wants to take it outside after the break.

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Mopar Booth Tour – SEMA 2014

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Mopar brought one of everything to SEMA 2014, including a funny car! From Ram to Renegade, from ACR to Abarth, there was a Mopar Concepts vehicle for everyone.

The small car segment was well represented with a Dodge Dart, two Fiat 500s and a Chrysler 200S. The Dart sported a matte black hood, with a scoop more prominent than our picture makes it seem, and a revised front fascia to allow plenty of air to the mysterious turbo-charged engine. It’s about time Dodge brought the newest iteration of the SRT-4 here, after the Neon made a splash and the Caliber just sunk, and this concept fits the bill. Whether or not we actually see it is yet to be seen but, with the success Ford is having with the Fiesta and Focus ST, we can’t help but think Dodge will follow suit. The other three cars were more visually focused, only sporting significant paint, body and wheel changes, but the 200S also received a drop from coilovers and was truly stunning. Clean and elegant. I bet they’d sell a lot more if they came out of the factory looking like Mopar’s version.

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600+ HP 2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Unveiled

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We had briefly touched on it when we reported that the SRT brand was moving back under Dodge and now it is official. Dodge has unveiled the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat featuring a 600+ horsepower supercharged 6.2L HEMI, the most powerful Challenger ever built. In fact, it’s the most powerful V8 that Chrysler Group has ever built. Final power numbers and performance figures haven’t been released, hence the “600+” reference but wherever it lands it’ll slot nicely above the standard Challenger. If you need a refresher, that one pumps out 485 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque resulting in a quarter mile time in the low 12s and a 0-60 time of 4.5 seconds. The Hellcat should easily break into the 11s and have a sub 4 second 0-60 time with its specially designed Pirelli Y-Plus rated all-season tires. If you don’t like rowing your own gears, there is some good news. The Hellcat will be available in a 6-speed manual as well as an 8-speed automatic.

“The new 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat is the ultimate performance muscle car,” said Tim Kuniskis, President and CEO – Dodge Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. “Dodge is the Mainstream Performance brand, and now combined with SRT, we are able to unleash a true GT car with an all-new driver-focused interior and the TorqueFlite eight-speed transmission combined with the most powerful V-8 Chrysler has ever produced. The Challenger Hellcat has been released!”

Standard wheels on the Challenger SRT with the Hellcat engine are new SRT-exclusive “Slingshot” split-seven spoke 20×9.5″, lightweight forged-aluminum wheels with a matte black finish. These wheels are available on the regular SRT as part of the SRT Track Pack. Buyers of the Challenger SRT Hellcat can opt for a set of wheels with a brass monkey/dark bronze finish as well in the same sizing. Underneath these massive wheels are a set of 15.4″ Brembo brakes featuring two-piece rotors and six-piston calipers. These brakes are also included in the SRT Track Pack if you’re not going with the Hellcat.

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SRT Back Under Dodge, Dart SRT, New Crossover Detailed

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While it should have been expected based on their presentation in New York, it was still a surprise when Dodge announced that the SRT brand will be consildated and will fall under Dodge again instead of being a separate entity. That’s not all though, with SRT falling back under Dodge there are a few pieces of SRT related news that was announced today. First a couple recaps from New York, the refreshed Challenger and Charger will be getting their SRT versions in August, and January respectively. Both will see new versions released in July 2018 with SRT versions showing up December 2018. It is widely expected that the new Challenger and Chargers will be powered by an all-new supercharged 6.2L V8 codenamed “Hellcat”.

A refreshed Dodge Dart will make its appearance in June 2016, with an all-wheel drive SRT version due to arrive in December 2016. At around the same timeframe, the Dodge Journey will be replaced with a new crossover in July 2016. The updated crossover will also, surprise! get an SRT version that is set to arrive in January 2017. There is no word on whether the Durango, which received an update last year in New York will get a new SRT model but we do know its next mid-cycle refresh is due in early 2017.

Finally, we learn that Dodge will be introducing a B-segment sedan and hatchback in early 2018 but details are sparse at the moment. If you noticed we didn’t mention the Avenger or Caravan. Both of those models will be killed off with the Avenger being axed in 2015, and the Caravan following soon in 2016 just in time for you to get an updated Journey crossover. Minivans suck anyway. ;)

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Dodge Updates 2015 Charger

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After launching the new 2015 Dodge Challenger, Dodge rolled out the refreshed 2015 Dodge Charger featuring a whole host of updates including a new hood, fenders, front and rear fascias, front doors (this is a 4 door sports car remember?), LED fog lights, new wheels, and the signature LED “racetrack” taillights.

Taking a closer look up front, the new 2015 Dodge Charger gets an all-new crosshair grill, plenty of LEDs (fog lights, day time running lights, and turn signals) and new projector headlights. The front fascia has been sloped more aggressively to give it a meaner stance. The updated front-end follows the same design language found on the Dart and Durango.

Out back the C-pillar has been moved further back and combined with a shorter rear overhang gives the 2015 Charger more of a fastback look. A new three piece rear spoiler is integrated into the rear fenders and trunk lid and the rear “racetrack” LED ribbon taillights have been brought over from the Durango. The center high-mounted stop lamp is relocated from the top of the decklid to the roofline inside the back glass, allowing centering of the Charger’s backup camera.

The 2015 Dodge Charger SE and SXT can be fitted with Dodge’s innovative AWD system with front-axle disconnect which results in a fuel economy gain of about 5%. Dodge Charger’s innovative AWD system seamlessly transitions between RWD and AWD with no driver intervention. To better anticipate low-traction roadways, the Dodge Charger’s innovative AWD system automatically engages in cold weather, when slip is detected or when the windshield wipers are on in rainy or snowy conditions.

The new 2015 Dodge Charger will be available this fall.

See More Pictures of 2015 Dodge Charger


Dodge Utilizes Centennials To Introduce New 2015 Dodge Challenger

In the introduction video for Dodge’s press conference to introduce the new 2015 Dodge Challenger and Chargers, a dozen or so centennials began by saying what they’ve learned over their lives. In a montage with some calm elevator music we were told that over their 100 years of life they have learned a lot. We were told to never lie, never cheat, always follow rules, learn from our mistakes and to open our eyes and enjoy life. Then the music changed. The burnouts began, and the smoke started. The montage continued and now we were told to break all the rules, drive fast, have fun and to live life! That definitely woke up some of the sleepy journalists in attendance as many broke out in laughter. There’s just something awesome about a 106 year old man hanging out the window of a Dodge Challenger flashing the horns.

To assist with the hooning, Dodge is now offering a new Scat Pack model with a 6.4L HEMI V8 that delivers a 485 horsepower and 475 lb-ft punch to their competitors throats. Power is delivered through a 6-speed manual or 8-speed automatic transmission. This results in a quarter mile time in the low 12s and a 0-60 time around 4.5 seconds. A special Scat Pack Appearance Group adds a unique Bumble Bee rear stripe, Gloss Black grille surround, HID headlamps and unique 20-by-9-inch forged lightweight Hyper Black II matte aluminum wheels. The interior features Scat Pack embroidered high-performance seats, premium embroidered floor mats, animated Scat Pack logo in the cluster, a high-performance steering wheel and premium Alpine-branded audio system with 276-watt amplifier.

To help hold the car still during some crazy burnouts, the car is equipped with brembo brakes and new 20″ wheels. Other new features include launch control and a three-mode electronic stability control with full-off capabilities. For those looking for a tamer Challenger, Dodge is still offering the 3.6L V6 with 305 horsepower and the 5.7L HEMI V8 that makes 375 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque that were offered with the current generation Challenger.

The 2015 Dodge Challenger design takes several cues from the classic 1971 Challenger including the split “race track” LED ribbon taillights and split grill. Up front four LED halos surround the projector headlights. HID headlights are also available. Also returning from the current Challenger is the iconic engine-mounted, fully functional cold-air induction Shaker hood available on the R/T and R/T Plus models.

The new 2015 Dodge Challenger will be available later this year, and the Scat Pack model will be available shortly after that.

See More Pictures Including the Scat Pack


Chrysler / Mopar SEMA 2013 Booth Tour

Front and Center inside the Mopar booth at SEMA 2013 was a pair of limited edition Dodge Challengers that were being debuted at the show. For 2014 the Mopar Limited Edition is circling back to the Challenger (In 2011 it was the Charger, then 2012 there was a Mopar ’12 300 and last year Mopar produced a Mopar ’13 Dart). The Mopar ’14 Challenger will be limited to a production run of only 100, making it the rarest Mopar Limited Edition and will be available only in Bright White or Gloss Black.

Mopar also revealed that the Shaker hood will return to the Challenger as a functional element:

“The legendary Shaker performance hood is back, with its engine-mounted, fully floating scoop and exposed high-flow element that produces cold-air induction – making the new 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Shaker the real deal,” said Tim Kuniskis, President and CEO of Dodge Brand. “With Challenger having its best sales-year ever, the time is right to provide our most loyal fans with the return of the Shaker, and even more power with new ‘Scat Package,’ performance stage kits.”

The engine mounted, matte black sits above the hood drawing cool air into engine. The “Shaker” name comes from the fact that the air intake shakes or moves with movement of the engine. Dodge also announced that new Scat performance packages will be available on the Dart, Charger and Challenger models. A Challenger fitted with a Scat Performance package can be seen above.

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