Holy Hellcat, the Horsepower Wars Just Got Real

Dodge Challenger Hellcat

This whole horsepower thing is officially out of control.

Before I really get into things, I’d like to point out a great irony: Automakers across the world are vying to create the most powerful street-legal cars ever available, with horsepower numbers and 0-60 times once reserved for only the most exclusive supercars. Five hundred horsepower was once the realm of fantasy but can now be had in just about any suburban garage across America.

At the same time, automakers are trying to sell the most fuel efficient hybrid and electric cars to econo-loving environmentalists. It’s the very definition of a double standard, yet we all seem to accept it.

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Dodge Puts on Purity Ring, Promises Return to Roots

2013 Dodge Dart SRT

Dodge: Losing weight and gaining speed

Like many middle-aged American men, Dodge has grown fat and slow. Over the years, its passion for life and zest for thrilling speed have given way to bloated discomfort and expanding waistlines.

Why live fast and stay young and fit when you can fall into the comfort of wide seats and underpowered motivation?

Yes, the younger Dodge was strong and attractive, while the modern Dodge has pretty much given up on life. Dodge is the overweight guy who goes to Walmart in sweatpants and slippers, because he doesn’t really care anymore. He’s been married forever, has no one left to impress and would be happy in an existence of slow degradation until the end.

Sometimes all it takes is one event to inspire change. Dodge seems to have experienced that event and has vowed to “purify” itself, according to Automotive News.

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Will Dodge Disappear Next?

2013 Dodge Dart

If you’re like me, when you hear the name Dodge, you still think of beefy pickup trucks. Never mind the fact that Chrysler took all of Dodge’s trucks and moved them under the Ram brand back in 2009.

That shift left Dodge with nothing more than a couple of cars, two SUVs and a van. The plan was to turn Dodge into a sporty car brand, but so far the new Dart is as close as we’ve seen to anything new and exciting. With some recent news about some Dodge vehicles getting discontinued, is it possible Dodge will cease to exist?

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Cars Coming Soon: Chrysler to Bring More FIAT, Alfa Romeo Cars to U.S.

Alfa Romeo 4C

Alfa Romeo 4C: The future of Chrysler is bright

“What Chrysler would you buy today? What does the future hold for coming cars, and when will FIAT’s influence be noticed?”

These questions surfaced while out for a couple of pints with the guys this week. You might think we’d talk about girls and football and other exciting, enticing topics. But no, we talk about Chrysler instead.

FIAT’s ownership of Chrysler is already being felt. In fact, it might be the best thing to ever happen to the Auburn Hills company. Net income for 2012 approached $2 billion. Market share grew to over 11%. The new Dodge Dart is based on FIAT architecture. Good things are happening at Chrysler, with even more good coming. New vehicles of all kinds are on the way for all brands that now sit under FIAT’s U.S. umbrella.

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The 7 Most Dangerous Vehicles on the Road

2012 Ram Pickup 1500 Laramie Limited

Mention the most dangerous vehicles on the road today, and the Ram 1500 pickup truck isn’t likely to make many people’s list. Dangerous to others, perhaps, but certainly not the most dangerous vehicle to ride in.

The smart fortwo? That would make sense.

But, once again, we have proof that we live in a world that doesn’t make much sense. Because, according to the website 24/7 Wall St, which compiled information from Consumer Reports ratings, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration crash safety results, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety vehicle scores and J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Study, the most dangerous vehicle on the road today is indeed the Ram pickup truck. And the smart’s not even on the list.

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Dodge Dart: New or Used?

2013 Dodge Dart

Dodge has finally revealed its new compact sedan, the Dodge Dart, at the Detroit Auto Show.

While the name follows the same retro trend as the new Challenger and Charger, the new Dart is not a new version of the original. Still, though, by resurrecting the old name, Chrysler is just asking for comparisons to be made between then and now.

The specs for the modern version are as impressive as the design, both of which come to us thanks to Dodge’s new Italian cousin, Alfa Romeo. The 2013 Dart, based on the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, isn’t anything close to a sports car, though. It’s a compact sedan aimed at the likes of the Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra.

Let’s compare new with old and let you decide: Which would you want?

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Cars We’ll Miss, and Some We Won’t, in 2012

BMW Active Hybrid X6

New years always promise to bring big changes. The year 2012 will be no different, with some changes sure to be good and some…not so much. One thing for sure, 2012 will arrive very soon, but some cars won’t live to see the end of it.

The Detroit Free Press put together a list of cars that will fade away during the course of the next year. Some of the cars will be sorely missed, while others should have crossed over to the great junkyard in the sky years ago.

Keep reading for a list of the cars that didn’t make the cut to exist past 2012.

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Will Alfa Romeo Replace Dodge in America?

The replacement for Dodge?

Killing off the Dodge Grand Caravan would be tantamount to Toyota dumping its Camry.

But, in what looks to be a major sign of big changes to come for Dodge, the Grand Caravan will apparently exist only on the used market come 2014.

According to the reputable and journalistically conservative Automotive News, Chrysler will kill off its mainstay minivan sometime in 2013. That would leave the Chrysler Town & Country as the only van under the Pentastar’s roof; a vehicle that consistently sells fewer copies than the Grand Caravan.

It doesn’t make sense. It’s known that Chrysler/FIAT CEO Sergio Marchionne wants to consolidate brands at dealers and eliminate duplication on the sales floor. While I appreciate any plan to end the much-maligned practice of re-badging at Chrysler, dumping a perennial best-selling icon like the Grand Caravan could be a troubling sign for the Dodge brand. With plans to bring Alfa Romeo to the U.S. (someday), could it be possible that Marchionne is laying the groundwork to phase out Dodge and replace it with Alfa?

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