Interior Color: Gray
Number of Cylinders: 8
Drive Type: RWD
Options: Leather Seats
Number of Doors: 4
Exterior Color: Maroon
Bakersfield, California, United States
1948 Dodge Coronet limousine conversion done at the factory. $19,500 OBO. Leather interior, custom paint job. Beautiful car.
In other parts of the world, Fiat builds and sells a version of the Dodge Dart called the Viaggio, and it appears that in addition to the current sedan bodystyle, a new hatchback version of the car is also in the works. Autocar says that the general manager for China's Guangzhou-Fiat joint venture, John Burton, has confirmed that a new Viaggio hatchback will be revealed by the end of this year before it goes on sale in early 2014.
The Viaggio will soon be joined by the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, which in China will be called the Liberty Light, at the Guangzhou-Fiat plant. While the idea of a Dodge Dart hatchback might be enough to enable most of us to forget about the Dodge Caliber, a North American variant doesn't appear to be in the cards. We reached out to Chrysler PR boss Rick Deneau, and he offered a succinct: "No plans at this time."
Chrysler is recalling 780,000 of its Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans from the 2010 to 2014 model years due to the possibility of circuits overheating, which can lead to a fire. Of the 780,000 total vans being recalled, Chrysler estimates that 644,850 are in the US, 106,980 are in Canada, 8,009 are in Mexico, and 20,638 are in other markets. All of the affected vehicles were built between August 25, 2010 and October 31, 2013.
Chrysler's engineers discovered that beverage spills or exposure to moisture (from rain, snow, car washes, and the like) were linked to circuits shorting in the window switch assembly. Short circuits can overheat, and thus, cause a fire.
Chrysler will contact owners and let them know when they may schedule service, at which point, the window switches will be replaced. In the interim, the automaker says that owners may visit their dealers after May 14 to have the switches disconnected.
Striving for improved fuel economy, we already knew that Chrysler will begin using a nine-speed automatic transmission in some of its new products this year, but what we haven't known is that volume at which this gearbox will be used. According to Bloomberg, Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has been quoted as saying that the automaker expects to sell close to 200,000 units equipped with this new transmission in 2013. Those gear-rich trannies will be spread out across three models, consisting of the redesigned Chrysler 200, the still-unnamed Jeep Liberty replacement and the Dodge Dart.
This transmission should play a pivotal role in making Chrysler vehicles more competitive in their respective segments. Just for comparison, one of the Dart's key competitors, the Toyota Corolla, still uses a four-speed automatic, and a previous report indicates that the next-generation 200 could get up to 38 miles per gallon on the highway, which is better than most non-hybrid midsize sedans on the market. Marchionne says that the new Jeep model is expected during the second quarter of this year, but there is no word as to when the new 200 or nine-speed Dart will debut, but clearly Dodge would like to have the transmission in its compact yesterday. As for that volume figure, it definitely doesn't seem out of reach since the Dart, Liberty and 200 combined for a total of more than 225,000 units in 2012.
How many more gears can we expect in future cars? Probably not many more, since the CEO of transmission-builder ZF, Stefan Sommer, previously stated that nine speeds was the "natural limit" for transmissions.