The first 2013 Dodge Dart finally rolled off the assembly line earlier this month after eight months of prep work. Due to make their big initial splace at Dodge dealerships in June, the sporty styled Dart is Dodge’s first new compact car since 1995, when the Dodge Neon appeared on the scene.

“Dodge set its sights on the top of the compact class, and that’s exactly where the new Dart will land,” said Tom Barenboim, a Dodge spokesperson. “No other compact car can offer drivers such a versatile mix of style, power, fuel efficiency and technology. There is room for every buyer to make the Dodge Dart their own.”

The new Dart will be available with three engines, and is expected to earn a rating of 41 mpg on the highway in the Dart Aero trim. Inside, the Dart is available with the Uconnect Touch system, which uses a touchscreen to control functions like music playback, weather reports and even hands-free phone calls.

To find out more about the Dodge Dart, or to take a look at any Dodge vehicle, contact Larson Dodge.

 

 

31 May 2012

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Paintball battle

Those of you who’ve played paintball know the game rarely turns out how you imagined it. The weapons fire a .68 caliber blob using compressed air, and as such, they have all the accuracy of a pool noodle fired from a howitzer. That doesn’t make it any less fun to track your friends down through the woods and paint them dayglow pink, though. One filmmaker has decided to show off exactly what the game looks like in the imaginations of 12-year-old boys everywhere by throwing in unsanctioned weaponry like full-on Nitro Circus Baja trucks, airfoils, ATVs, motocross bikes, Jeep Wrangler troop carriers and plenty of dirt jumps. There’s even a cameo by an older doorless Grand Cherokee.

It’s paintball armegeddon. Still, we feel it’s our duty to warn anyone who’s still reading not try these sorts of shenanigans at home – battle between foot soldier and moving vehicle rarely works out in the former’s favor. Check out the melee for yourself by scrolling below.

Continue reading Watch the world’s most epic wheel-to-wheel paintball battle

Watch the world’s most epic wheel-to-wheel paintball battle originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 29 May 2012 19:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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31 May 2012

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2011 Ram

Take a vehicle’s Insurance Institute for Highway Safety score, throw it into a data pot that includes Consumer Reports ratings, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration crash safety results and J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Study numbers, mix thoroughly, then pour out the most dangerous vehicle on the road today: The Ram pickup truck.

The website 24/7 Wall St. created this analysis to reveal the models with consistent quality problems and poor safety scores. All of the vehicles scored poorly in one area or another in crash testing, typically side or rear impact tests. They all scored badly in rollover testing, except the Jeep Wrangler.

In order, the best of the worst are:

1. Dodge Ram
2. Chevrolet Colorado Super Cab
3. Mazda CX-7
4. Mazda CX-9
5. Nissan Pathfinder
6. Jeep Wrangler
7. Suzuki SX4

And while the data may speak volumes, it doesn’t translate into poor sales, 24/7 Wall St. noted. “In fact, sales of all models are up from last year,” the site stated.

24/7 Wall St. did not reveal the safest vehicles on the road today using the same data, but all it has to do is turn its list upside down.

Ram pickup leads group of Most Dangerous Cars In America originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 14:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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31 May 2012

Team Mopar NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Pro Stock driver Allen Johnson is looking to keep two streaks alive as he heads to Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, N.J., this weekend for the 43rd Annual NHRA SuperNationals, May 31–June 3. Johnson is looking for his second consecutive win of the season and also his second straight win at the Englishtown venue.

Continued here:
Team Mopar Driver Johnson Eyes Second Straight Win at Englishtown

31 May 2012

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black jeep wrangler dragon concept

Jeep
is one of the most famous brands in the world, and that recognition helps fuel sales and make the marque one of the shiniest gems in the Chrysler crown of brands. The world’s most voracious car market, China, knows and loves Jeep vehicles well enough to fuel a sales boom that’s got the company looking to add dealers and re-fire local production.

Chinese buyers snap up Jeep branded merchandise wherever they can find it, but the actual Jeep dealer network in China is only 120 strong. Still, sales were up 63 percent last year, and Jeep CEO Mike Manley is sure that could rise even further with better availability. “Our brand awareness and consideration is running way ahead of where our actual volumes are,” Manley said.

Jeep was actually one of the first western automakers to make a foray into China when American Motors Corporation set up Beijing Jeep in the 1980s. Since that time, Jeep has gone through ownership and cashflow tumult, stopping Chinese production in 2006. Now, Chrysler is looking for a partner to work with so that more Jeeps can be available to buyers that are starving for the vehicles they perceive so fondly.

If production within China isn’t re-started, Jeep may become just a memory. Right now, the Jeep models that are available in China are imported, and carry hefty price tags because of duties. Popularity of SUVs is high in China, and other manufacturers may not have the same image as Jeep, but with local production and lower prices, not to mention more dealers, availability may trump the Jeep mystique.

Jeep to push for more sales in China originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 09:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012

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black jeep wrangler dragon concept

Jeep
is one of the most famous brands in the world, and that recognition helps fuel sales and make the marque one of the shiniest gems in the Chrysler crown of brands. The world’s most voracious car market, China, knows and loves Jeep vehicles well enough to fuel a sales boom that’s got the company looking to add dealers and re-fire local production.

Chinese buyers snap up Jeep branded merchandise wherever they can find it, but the actual Jeep dealer network in China is only 120 strong. Still, sales were up 63 percent last year, and Jeep CEO Mike Manley is sure that could rise even further with better availability. “Our brand awareness and consideration is running way ahead of where our actual volumes are,” Manley said.

Jeep was actually one of the first western automakers to make a foray into China when American Motors Corporation set up Beijing Jeep in the 1980s. Since that time, Jeep has gone through ownership and cashflow tumult, stopping Chinese production in 2006. Now, Chrysler is looking for a partner to work with so that more Jeeps can be available to buyers that are starving for the vehicles they perceive so fondly.

If production within China isn’t re-started, Jeep may become just a memory. Right now, the Jeep models that are available in China are imported, and carry hefty price tags because of duties. Popularity of SUVs is high in China, and other manufacturers may not have the same image as Jeep, but with local production and lower prices, not to mention more dealers, availability may trump the Jeep mystique.

Jeep to push for more sales in China originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 09:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012

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Fiat Badge

Fiat Chairman John Elkann says his company has no plans to purchase a stake in Mazda, according to Reuters. Instead, the Italian automaker will focus its efforts on increasing its share of Chrysler to more than 60 percent. Right now, Fiat owns 58.5 percent of Chrysler, though the European company has made it clear that at some point in the future, it would like that figure to be closer to 100 percent.

Fiat and Mazda recently announced a plan to partner on the development of a new convertible sports car platform that will serve as the basis for both the next-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata and a new Alfa Romeo model. That partnership led analysts to speculate on a potential investment deal between Mazda and Chrysler. Both companies have dismissed the notion.

Even so, it’s worth pointing out that Fiat has no interest in investing in Mazda right now. The company has its hands full with the European economic crisis and nursing Chrysler back to health, but there’s nothing saying that once those two issues cool down Fiat wouldn’t revisit the idea of a Japanese partner if the roadster partnership goes smoothly. Mazda could certainly use the cash, and we’re betting that Fiat wouldn’t mind injecting a bit of the Japanese automaker’s dynamic prowess and Skyactiv knowhow into its products.

Fiat says it has “no plans” to take Mazda stake originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 11:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012

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Fiat Badge

Fiat Chairman John Elkann says his company has no plans to purchase a stake in Mazda, according to Reuters. Instead, the Italian automaker will focus its efforts on increasing its share of Chrysler to more than 60 percent. Right now, Fiat owns 58.5 percent of Chrysler, though the European company has made it clear that at some point in the future, it would like that figure to be closer to 100 percent.

Fiat and Mazda recently announced a plan to partner on the development of a new convertible sports car platform that will serve as the basis for both the next-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata and a new Alfa Romeo model. That partnership led analysts to speculate on a potential investment deal between Mazda and Chrysler. Both companies have dismissed the notion.

Even so, it’s worth pointing out that Fiat has no interest in investing in Mazda right now. The company has its hands full with the European economic crisis and nursing Chrysler back to health, but there’s nothing saying that once those two issues cool down Fiat wouldn’t revisit the idea of a Japanese partner if the roadster partnership goes smoothly. Mazda could certainly use the cash, and we’re betting that Fiat wouldn’t mind injecting a bit of the Japanese automaker’s dynamic prowess and Skyactiv knowhow into its products.

Fiat says it has “no plans” to take Mazda stake originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 11:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012

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2011 Jeep Compass - silver - front three-quarter view

Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has shed a little light on the future of a few Chrysler products, including the Jeep Compass, Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Dart. While speaking at the Chrysler Belvidere Assembly Plant, Marchionne said both the Jeep Patriot and Compass will continue to be build at the facility through 2014, at which point it will be replaced by a new model. The executive was mum on the Patriot’s future, however. Marchionne also tipped his company’s hand on the development of a Dodge Dart SRT model, saying the machine is coming. Right now, the company is simply trying to decide “how big an engine we stick in it.”

That has to be a fun debate.

Then there’s Chrysler Town & Country. We’ve already heard word that Chrysler aims to kill off either the Dodge Grand Caravan or the Town & Country, and now it appears the latter is destined to leave the market. Marchionne said the Grand Caravan will be the automaker’s only minivan moving forward and that Chrysler will fill the void in its lineup with a new, smaller upscale crossover. Details are slim on that model, though other reports have suggested the machine may resemble to the unloved Mercedes-Benz R-Class.

Marchionne confirms Compass, Town & Country to die; Dart to get SRT version originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012

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2011 Jeep Compass - silver - front three-quarter view

Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has shed a little light on the future of a few Chrysler products, including the Jeep Compass, Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Dart. While speaking at the Chrysler Belvidere Assembly Plant, Marchionne said both the Jeep Patriot and Compass will continue to be build at the facility through 2014, at which point it will be replaced by a new model. The executive was mum on the Patriot’s future, however. Marchionne also tipped his company’s hand on the development of a Dodge Dart SRT model, saying the machine is coming. Right now, the company is simply trying to decide “how big an engine we stick in it.”

That has to be a fun debate.

Then there’s Chrysler Town & Country. We’ve already heard word that Chrysler aims to kill off either the Dodge Grand Caravan or the Town & Country, and now it appears the latter is destined to leave the market. Marchionne said the Grand Caravan will be the automaker’s only minivan moving forward and that Chrysler will fill the void in its lineup with a new, smaller upscale crossover. Details are slim on that model, though other reports have suggested the machine may resemble to the unloved Mercedes-Benz R-Class.

Marchionne confirms Compass, Town & Country to die; Dart to get SRT version originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 30 May 2012 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 May 2012