2014 Dodge Charger Pursuit AWD better able to catch bad guys in the snow

September 15, 2012 at 10:55 pm

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With the Ford Crown Victoria out of the picture, automakers are in a fight for police car domination, and Dodge just upped the ante by adding an optional all-wheel drive system on the Charger Pursuit for 2014.

Previously, the Charger Pursuit was only available with rear-wheel drive, but adding the AWD system gives it an advantage over the rear-drive-only Chevrolet Caprice PPV and makes the car more marketable in Northern police fleets against the Ford Taurus-based Police Interceptor Sedan which also offers AWD. Dodge’s system differs from Ford‘s mainly by being rear-wheel biased, but Chrysler also says that it features an active transfer case and a front axle disconnect system. These allow the Charger Pursuit to have great traction in slick road conditions and deliver optimal fuel economy in regular driving.

The new Charger AWD police car will only be available on the cars equipped with the V8 engine, and while Chrysler didn’t announce fuel economy estimates, the regular Charger AWD gets 15 mpg city and 23 mpg highway. For top fuel economy, the Pentastar V6 is still available under the RWD Charger Pursuit’s hood.

Chrysler’s announcement of the Charger Pursuit AWD came on the same day that Ford announced the addition of the more powerful and more fuel-efficient 3.7-liter V6 to the Police Interceptor Sedan.

You can check out the press release below.

2014 Dodge Charger Pursuit AWD better able to catch bad guys in the snow originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 15 Sep 2012 14:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Chrysler 200 successor to boast 38 mpg, 9-speed automatic

September 12, 2012 at 6:07 am

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2011 Chrysler 200 - front three-quarter view, silver

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the next-generation Chrysler 200 will show off a host of improvements, including a fuel economy rating of 38 miles per gallon on the highway. That’s a jump of seven mpg over the current model, and much of that efficiency can be chalked up to a new nine-speed automatic transmission. Expect to see the revised 200 show up on dealer lots in the first quarter of 2014. The news came courtesy of a dealer meeting in Las Vegas, where Chrysler unveiled upwards of six new vehicles set to arrive within the next year and a half.

Chrysler reportedly also showed off its subcompact 100, said to be based on the Dodge Dart. Other vehicles shown at the dealer sit-down included a four-door version of the Fiat 500, the replacement for the Jeep Liberty and a new small Jeep as well. Both dealers and the manufacturer are keeping the rest of their secrets to themselves at the moment. Stay tuned.

Chrysler 200 successor to boast 38 mpg, 9-speed automatic originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 11 Sep 2012 10:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Chrysler and fashion designer John Varvatos team up for special edition 300 sedans

September 12, 2012 at 6:07 am

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Chrysler and John Varvatos, two award-winning entities with strong ties to the city of Detroit, have teamed up to create a pair of bespoke luxury sedans that showcase what can happen when the automotive world meets the fashion industry. The 2013 Chrysler 300C John Varvatos Limited Edition and Luxury Edition will both bring a new level of exclusivity to this stylish, full-size sedan.

Varvatos’ self-named menswear fashion brand, John Varvatos, has a raw industrial look, but the designer is also heavily infused with the rock ‘n’ roll scene from his early interest in fashion to his involvement with the VH1 Save the Music Foundation where he is a board member. This mix of industry and rock ‘n’ roll can easily be seen in the new 300C models.

Each car will get a slightly different look and feel with the 300C John Varvatos Limited Edition coming in an exclusive Phantom Black tri-coat paint job as the basis of the car’s dark and sinister appearance. All of the 300′s regular bright chrome trim has been replaced by dark titanium accents (on the grille surround, daylight opening trim and the dual exhaust outlets) or black chrome on the front grille. Dark 20-inch, multi-spoke wheels and smoked LED taillight lenses finish off the eye-catching styling, and even Chrysler’s signature wing badge has been darkened to match the rest of the exterior. The 300C Luxury Edition gets slightly different look with a platinum chrome mesh grille and polished wheels.

The 300C’s fashion makeover gets even more intense inside. Looking like it came right off a John Varvatos runway, the Limited Edition gets features like the pewter metallic leather seats with exclusive Diesel Gray and black stitching to match one of Varvatos’ leather jackets. Also, the instrument panel clock and gauge cluster has been redesigned to match the brand’s watch design including what should be a stunning pearlescent white face with black bezels. The Luxury Edition’s cabin steps things up even more with two color options for the Nappa leather seats and hand-sanded, matte-finished Natural Pore Mocha real wood accents. Both cars come with Chrylser’s 8.4-inch UConnect system with a distinct “John Varvatos” screen display.

Chrysler has yet to announce the pricing or availability for either of these models, but it did say that the Limited Edition would in fact be produced in limited numbers.

Despite carrying the 300C name, the Limited Edition and Luxury Edition versions of this car will be available with both V6 and V8 engines as well as optional all-wheel drive. Up until this car, the 300C nameplate was used solely to distinguish cars equipped with the Hemi V8. Scroll down for the official press release.

Continue reading Chrysler and fashion designer John Varvatos team up for special edition 300 sedans

Chrysler and fashion designer John Varvatos team up for special edition 300 sedans originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 12 Sep 2012 00:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dodge debuts second ‘How to build a…’ Dart ad

September 5, 2012 at 4:51 pm

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Dodge has released a second smash-cut “How to…” ad for the new Dart. Just like the last one, its full of a whole lot of stuff coming at you at once.

Dodge would like you to think that its R&D department constructed a time machine, and brought a man back from the future to construct the thin film transistor (TFT) display that can be ordered to replace traditional analog gauges on the Dart, as well as the massive-for-a-small-car 8.4-inch Uconnect touch screen display. Apparently after using Minority Report-style technology, he creates these two devices, is sent back to the future, and the time machine is destroyed. How did the spy photographers not catch this?

OK, but seriously, Dodge is making the point that the TFT screen and Uconnect 8.4 are seriously high tech and especially rare in a compact car. Oh yeah, and there’s more Tom Brady.

Check out the video and accompanying press release below. This ad will air during a commercial break tonight on a special Wednesday edition of Sunday Night Football (that last bit only makes sense if you watch football regularly.)

Continue reading Dodge debuts second ‘How to build a…’ Dart ad

Dodge debuts second ‘How to build a…’ Dart ad originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 05 Sep 2012 10:11:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Revised Chrysler 300 V6 joins Hyundai Genesis atop Consumer Reports large sedan ratings

August 24, 2012 at 7:59 am

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2012 Chrysler 300 S and 2012 Hyundai Genesis sedans

In the not too distant past, large sedans had devolved into largely boring highway cruisers destined for lives consisting of annual trips from New York to South Florida. Thankfully, the industry’s latest crop of big four-doors actually brings improved quality and a more enjoyable driving experience to the table. This couldn’t be any more evident than the new large sedans that Consumer Reports recently tested and rated. While the Hyundai Genesis remained on top in this category, the updated 2012 Chrysler 300 surged ahead of its other competitors thanks primarily to the car’s new transmission. Other sedans tested that were new or improved in 2012 include the Hyundai Azera, Buick LaCrosse eAssist and the 2013 Ford Taurus.

With a rating of 87, the Hyundai Genesis is still the institute’s top-rated large sedan, but the new Chrysler 300 V6 with the eight-speed automatic transmission put Chrysler’s flagship sedan closer to the Genesis with a rating of 83; the V8-powered 300C has a rating of 82. This higher rating is a result of the new ZF-sourced transmission’s smoother shifts and improved fuel economy. A five-speed transmission is still offered in the car, but the new gearbox delivers an extra 4 miles per gallon on the highway (and 2 mpg in the combined rating). The new transmission did take a slight hit from CR due to its oddly “fussy” shifter.

Nipping at the heels of the new 300 V6, the redesigned 2012 Hyundai Azera received a favorable score of 81 due to mainly its improved interior and ride quality. The Buick LaCrosse eAssist mild hybrid comes in next with a rating of 78 to go with its best-in-class observed economy of 26 mpg, while the 2013 Ford Taurus is still at the bottom of the list with a rating of 64 primarily due to CR‘s dislike of the MyFord Touch infotainment system and the car’s cramped cabin.

None of the four new sedans received the coveted CR recommendation since all are either brand-new or significantly updated for 2012.

View the press release from CR below.

Continue reading Revised Chrysler 300 V6 joins Hyundai Genesis atop Consumer Reports large sedan ratings

Revised Chrysler 300 V6 joins Hyundai Genesis atop Consumer Reports large sedan ratings originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 23 Aug 2012 18:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dodge Dart factory graphics packages revealed

July 10, 2012 at 5:24 pm

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Dodge Dart with graphics package - twin black stripes on red car

As we wrote in our review of the 2013 Dodge Dart, “Dodge wants the Dart to be all things to all buyers.” So in addition to the 150 accessories, that of course means it needs plenty of graphics packages. Dodge-Dart.org forum member Moparsrt has posted (some admittedly grainy) pictures of a few of the 20 graphics options that will also be available, and the images we have for now include a variety of stripes in different configurations, from the classic twin-stripe over the middle to pinstripes along the sides.

This is only four out of 20, though, and Moparsrt says there’ll be one for every taste. We wonder if there’ll be one to mimic the Dart GTS Tribute model – we figure there won’t be one to mimic Pastrana’s RallyCross model. The packages haven’t showed up yet at Mopar.com, but we’re told they should appear in accessory catalogs soon.

Dodge Dart factory graphics packages revealed originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 10 Jul 2012 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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New Rules: Dart commercial shows how to create a new car in 90 seconds

July 10, 2012 at 7:21 am

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Chrysler
has just released its first Dodge Dart commercial that will debut during the Major League Baseball All-Star Game on Tuesday night.

The commercial kicks off the Dart’s “New Rules” ad campaign and features the Jay-Z and Kanye West single “No Church in the Wild” as its soundtrack. This 90-second commercial titled “How To Change Cars Forever” is a rapid-fire ambush of information outlining what it takes to make a car. Auto insiders and enthusiasts will enjoy all of the steps taken to create any car and the general public will appreciate the humor sprinkled throughout the commercial, including a cameo by New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. We appreciate that Chrysler appears to be the only auto manufacturer willing to tackle long-form ads as of late (see also: Super Bowl).

“Adding a dose of fun, creative license and Dodge brand humor, (the commercial) captures the meticulous process of starting with a simple idea and developing it into a revolutionary new car,” says Olivier Francois, head of marketing for Chrysler Group LLC.

The full Dart ad campaign kicks off in September, though teasers like this should be making their way into media outlets between now and then. The 2013 Dodge Dart is beginning to roll into dealerships right now.

Scroll down to read the whole press release and see the commercial.

Continue reading New Rules: Dart commercial shows how to create a new car in 90 seconds

New Rules: Dart commercial shows how to create a new car in 90 seconds originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 09 Jul 2012 12:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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NHTSA opens investigations on Chrysler 200 and Ford Explorer

June 23, 2012 at 12:54 am

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2011 Chrysler 200

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened new investigations concerning the Chrysler 200 and Ford Explorer. All of the vehicles in question are from the 2011 model year, with 87,000 200s and 83,000 Explorers being investigated.

NHTSA’s Chrysler investigation concerns possible stalling problems, with the organization stating that it has received 15 complaints of the 200′s 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 stalling. “All 15 incidents reported stalling without warning during low-speed decelerations such as braking for a stop sign or traffic light,” NHTSA’s official release states. This investigation does involve both the sedan and convertible models.

2011 Ford ExplorerMoving to the Explorer, NHTSA is investigating reports of power steering failure with the electric power-assisted system. In some instances, owners have complained that the system completely stops working, while other drivers simply noted greater effort being needed to turn the wheel. NHTSA writes:

“Some of the complaints indicated observing a power steering warning message when the failure occurred. In some cases, the condition was corrected by turning the vehicle off and restarting. However, some reports indicate the condition returned after restart.”

No accidents have been linked to either the Ford or Chrysler issues.

Keep in mind, these investigations are not recalls – merely a way for NHTSA to probe a certain model and determine if an official recall is actually necessary. Click here and here to read both of the NHTSA investigation reports.

NHTSA opens investigations on Chrysler 200 and Ford Explorer originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 22 Jun 2012 17:16:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Chrysler sponsors The Dark Knight Rises, goes Imported From Gotham City

June 20, 2012 at 1:47 pm

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Batman Chrysler 300S

Chrysler and Warner Brothers have partnered up on a new ad for the 300S and The Dark Knight Rises. The spot shows a special concept version of the big sedan being stitched together in Bruce Wayne’s underground lab to music borrowed from the film.

Details are scarce on the custom “Dark Knight Rises” edition Chrysler 300S, though the changes look to be mostly aesthetic. A new matte black paint scheme, special wheels and, most importantly, a jet engine thruster are all part of the dressings. At the end of the ad, “Imported from Gotham City” replaces the “Imported from Detroit” tag line.

The Dark Knight Rises is set to be released on July 20, though the Chrysler ad will debut tonight on ABC. Fiat and Chrysler marketing chief Olivier Francois published a post on Chrysler’s official blog introducing the commercial, and you can read it here.

For some reason, we doubt Batman would ever find himself behind the wheel of a 300S – the latest trailer for The Dark Knight Rises features Catwoman behind the wheel of Wayne’s Lamborghini Aventador. Take a look at both the trailer and the ad for yourself below.

Continue reading Chrysler sponsors The Dark Knight Rises, goes Imported From Gotham City

Chrysler sponsors The Dark Knight Rises, goes Imported From Gotham City originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 19 Jun 2012 19:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Watch Travis Pastrana hoon the world’s only Dodge Dart rally car

June 15, 2012 at 3:22 pm

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Travis Pastrana Dodge Dart rally car

If you had one evening to record a promotional video and photo shoot, a full camera crew and the only Dodge Dart rally car in existence, what would you do with it? If you’re Travis Pastrana, you bring your buddies from Red Bull with you to Chrysler’s Chelsea Proving Grounds and you film them filming you hooning the bejeezus out of it.

By now, you’ve probably already seen the video Dodge released showing Pastrana’s exploits in the race-spec Dart, full of slow-motion scenes and plenty of full-throttle drifting on tarmac and off. If not, click here. Since two minutes and 44 seconds of said footage is good, eight minutes of it can only be better, right? Right.

Watch it all unfold in the video below.

Continue reading Watch Travis Pastrana hoon the world’s only Dodge Dart rally car

Watch Travis Pastrana hoon the world’s only Dodge Dart rally car originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 14 Jun 2012 20:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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