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Dodge’s new compact sedan offers choice, at a price

The revival of the Dart badge also brings with it the return of the compact sedan to the Dodge brand, something it’s been missing for almost a decade. If competition was fierce back then, it’s an all-out bar fight now with the typically strong Japanese set being joined by the Koreans as well as some impressive new compacts from Ford and Chevy.

ALL ABOUT CHOICE

Perhaps the antithesis of the Hyundai Elantra and its simple trim level and option pack structure the Dart is prone to personalization and looks to win over buyers with choice. For starters there are 12 exterior paint colors and 14 interior combos plus six wheel options. Making matters really confusing are a choice of three engines and three different transmissions – not all of which are available at launch however. Finally there are also five different trim levels, which indicate what sort of interior and exterior equipment you’ll get as well as what your engine options are.

All this comes before you tack-on option packages and that include some truly amazing features for a compact car, including Nappa leather seats, a heated steering wheel, cross traffic alert and blind spot monitoring. That said, as a well-equipped, and therefore expensive compact car, the Dart might just be the most attractive vehicle in its class.

The styling stops short of really drawing you in, but it’s impossible to argue it’s not a handsome little 4-door. The sharper split cross-hairs grille looks smart and the wrap-around brake-light design, borrowed from the Charger, gives some brand continuity thanks to 152 LED lights.
Read the complete 2013 Dodge Dart First Drive and watch the video review at AutoGuide.com
 
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