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Dodge Neon SRT-4



  • wale_bate1wale_bate1 Posts: 1,986
    You want price gouging?

    See also "Roadsters; Mazda Miata".
    See also "Roadsters; BMW Z3.
    See also "Minivans; Honda Odyssey".


    Chrysler's telling it like it is. Dealerships are independently owned and operated; Chrysler can only charge the specified factory price for the vehicles, they have no say in at what price the dealers turn them around. None.

    You want to get mad at someone? Get peeved at the pinheads willing to spend over sticker just to be the first one on the block. Or, like me, relax and let everybody get over it all and THEN make your move. But don't get down on a mfr because they got it right!
  • manavimanavi Posts: 150
    The latest issue of Automobile Magazine that I received in the mail yesterday has a write up of a test drive in the new SRT-4.

    It doesn't give specs, only the author's general opinion after test driving. It basically said the SRT-4 should be the definitive cheap pocket-rocket.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    I don't know why folks are complaining about potential torque steer still when the 3 reviews I've read have said that the equal length half-shafts make the problem quite minimal. Enough said as far as I'm concerned - at least until its out and I can compare it personally to my wife's front driver with 280 ft-lbs of torque (as opposed to 245) which also has minimal torque steer.

    As far as matching the published acceleration numbers - that should be pretty easy for the average Joe to do in this car, relatively speaking (compared to the many more peaky engines in the class), given that peak torque comes on low.

    This car has me contemplating setting foot on a Dodge dealer's lot. I just wish they had a better handle on quality issues for this car. OTOH, msn carpoint rates its reliability highly, FWIW.

    Can't have it all, but for under $20,000, it raises the bar in the class. I'm looking forward to the response from Honda, Ford, Mazda, etc.
  • dodgeramdodgeram Posts: 202
    I think chrysler has taken care of the reliabilty issues by offering a 7 year 70000mile warranty! And this 2.4 litre is completly redone from the block up.Go to and get all the facts on this motor it's been realy beefed up, so I don't think your going to have any problems.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    As a past owner of a flawless 98 Neon I am maybe a bit biased. The SRT-4 will be very fast, in not ideal conditions 3 different magazines have run the 1/4 mile with it in 14.2 sec, one even made a 14.1 run but they went with the average time, not the quickest. Another magazine put the car on the dyno and got 228 to the wheels! That means its making much more then 215 at the crank. The PT turbo get 215 at the crank but then the Dodge PVO team (the viper plant) takes that same motor and adds a better exhaust, bigger intercooler which means the computer will let it run at max boost (15 psi) in more conditions, and with less headloss then the 215 hp PT turbo. I'm sure in ideal condidions after living with the car for a few months sub 14 sec 1/4 mile times will be easy. There are 3 Dodge dealers within a few hours of me that sell every Chrysler product (including all the high demand cars like PT's) for $300 over factory invoice. They always have and I'm sure the SRT products will be the same. Production is limited but supposedly only by how many orders come in! With the $500 farm rebate and invoice plus $300 pricing the SRT-4 will cost about $18,000-$18,500. There is just nothing to compete with this price. The best deals I have ever heard of on the WRX's were $22,000 (manual wagons w/o any options). So if you want AWD the WRX can't be beat but if you can get by with FWD then this neon is a far better deal. Not to mention a 7-year/100000 mile warranty on that beefed motor is nice insurance.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    Although the hood scoop only cools the turbo housing from the factory. They left a provision so anybody can cut the hood, and the aircleaner box top, then add some sealing foam and get a hood suction cold air system for basically free. The big thing they left out but should be available in the Mopar Performance book was the limited slip front drive system. These can be expensive to buy and install on a FWD but I think would really add a lot to straight line acceleration. The spoiler is not to my liking either but according to the PVO team it is "functional at speed to balance the aerodynamics."

    Go down a few messages and you will find the factory stage I, II, III upgrades.

    There is a new review too if your interested.

  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    Of course, the 300 hp kit isn't street legal (cat is removed), but the 270 hp/ 270 ft-lb stage II is. According to C and D, with 215/245, this thing will already do 0-60 in 5.6 and the 1/4 in 14.2 at 102 mph.

    I can hear the competition already - Yeah, its really fast, but its only a Neon.

    and I can hear the SRT4 owners too - Yeah, its only a Neon, but its really fast. Dodge name-plate or not, that would put plenty of smile on my face - and the thing can handle too.

    I'm with the later. Folks reciting the former are suffering from a case of sour grapes.
  • wale_bate1wale_bate1 Posts: 1,986
    I'm excited about this car, even though I won't be buying one. I want to believe that it's a directional indicator for the future of Dodge as the street "performance" division within the DCX framework. Too bad Plymouth couldn't have stuck around for the ride, but the redundancy was always a problem.

    If a scoop can be made easily functional by an enthusiast owner, with little possibility of cosmetic damage in the process, then I'm OK with that. Could potentially (unlikely though) become a resale enhancement, if done by a Mopar shop (no way I'd buy an owner-installed one).

    That butt wing is another story completely. Consider that "at speed" is somewhere around or over 100mph, and that it's not going to hit that speed until the end of a 1/4-mile, and rarely in cornering, I think it's nothing more than a cosmetic faux pas. I'd put it right up there with aluminum double Ninja wings for silly styling statements. Especially on a FWD pocket-rocket.

    Can't wait to see one in person.
  • I can't either but my dealer said he is only going to order for paying customers. He is not going to stock them because of liability problems with customers taking "test" drives. Booo, there goes my test drive. I'd buy one but I just bought a 2002 R/T and my wife says she likes "her" car and doesn't want to trade it in.... And I love my Dakota Quad cab so I guess I won't be driving one in the near future.
  • beanboybeanboy Posts: 442
    That this subject isn't getting more posts. The SRT-4 is setting records on some of the automotive forums I visit from time to time.

    I for one will have probably stepped up the chain in terms of refinement, but if the price is right and the power is as good as the initial test reports indicate... Might just take the plunge.

  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    Well It's come down to this SRT-4 or a Hemi Ram 1500 series. Both can be had for under $20,000 although you gotta go with the ST trim on the Ram to keep it under $20,000. The Hemi Ram should run a 1/4 mile in mid 14's in 2wd regular cab form and the neon will be 1/2 sec quicker then that. The ram seats only 3 where the neon does 5. The ram can tow and haul stuff, the neon can haul something else. Personally I think the naturally aspirated Ram has more potential for upgrades down the line (Kenny belle already has a supercharger and intercooler that make 500hp on the hemi.) The again it's big v-8 gets weak gas mileage. The Ram will be easy to order at invoice with rebates (which pushes the price as low as $16,500) if the SRT-4 can't be bought at invoice with at least the farm rebate then I'll probably just go with the Ram. Still will wait until final details are determined and maybe drive both to make up my mind.
  • wale_bate1wale_bate1 Posts: 1,986

    I have never heard of these two being cross-shopped, and wouldn't have believed it if someone had told me!

    Do you have any curves to drive where you live, hersbird? That would make the difference to me, personally...;-) Then again, I have zero need or desire for a truck in the first place. Half-second quicker in the 1/4 mile without dumping a bucket of fuel each time sounds cool to me, but I have to admit that to me straight-line acceleration does not a winner make.

    Other than the breather, the 2.4L is still stock. There's an awful lot of meaningful modding that could still be done for the price of forcing the intake on the Hemi.

    All this is from a strictly car guy, though, so, grain of salt...
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    I guess they both have their pros and cons. Personally, I like handling as much as I like straight line accel., and would weigh it higher than towing/hauling ability.

    You make a good point about further upgrades, but - if you haven't already, you should check out the link above to the Mopar Stage I,II,III SRT-4 turbo upgrades. Stage III isn't street legal (you remove the cats), but Stage II is, and it bumps up output to 270/270 hp/ft-lbs.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    Well I own a truck right now, a Dakota R/T and evenin its pure stock state it will outhandle most stock cars out there. The first and only time I ever tried autocrossing, I beat a lightly modified Counture SVT that was a member of the local SCCA club for the last two years (he was a good driver, and had claen runs). I also beat (more like destroyed) a poorly driven 90's Mustang GT, and ran equal to a well driven older 911. The only other novice who was close was a turbo Saab and he beat me by 1/2 sec over a 1 1/2 minute run. I don't think the factory Ram will handle near as well as my Dakota but then again Hotchkis already has a full suspension (springs, shocks, and swaybars) kit for the new 2wd Rams. Personally I think the FWD srt-4 without a posi will be pretty difficult to drive in the autocross world, but maybe not. It would probably do pretty good in Montana winters with it's FWD though, my old 98 neon did.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    The dealer here said today he would take my money to put me on the list locally, he also said nobody else is on the SRT-4 list here so I'd be first. Tempting, but the guy didn't seem to be really on top how exactly the ordering and allowcation process will be. Basically I don't think anybody knows yet. Plus I want a invoice +$300 deal and at bare minimum the $500 farms rebate. He couldn't promise me any of those things on the SRT-4 yet. He did think they would be in the showroom in January which is good.
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    I guess those dodge guys are not used to the idea of a waiting list.
  • wale_bate1wale_bate1 Posts: 1,986
    Well, not for cars anyway...;-)

    hersbird: If the thing whips up half the interest out there that I think it will, then the minimum ADM I would expect to see on these is about $3K. So take MSRP, add $3K to that, and for the first few months, that's what I expect to be the going rate. Once the summer is over, I would think the pace might fall off a bit, but rebates and incentives of any kind on this don't look to figure in until at least year two.

    Then again, I'm not an automotive professional.

    I just play one on TV (kidding)...:)
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    Well depending on who can get the cars one of the nearby dealers here sells every Chrysler and GM product for a set amount over invoice. I think it's currently about $350 over invoice. That includes PT when they were first out, vipers, prowlers, whatever. So the SRT-4 will be the same. I have heard that dealers will have to send a technicition to a special school to qualify to sell SRT-4s and possibily that the dealer will also have to be a current '5-star' dealer. Hopefully if I choose the SRT-4 this dealer will be one to carry the srt-4 cause then I know I can get one for under $19,000.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    Well that dealr called me today and says it will bein the computer for ordering on Monday the 25th. We will see, there have been other false rumors like this in the past as well.
  • wale_bate1wale_bate1 Posts: 1,986
    If they'll really do that, and I'm even half-way right about demand, I'd say JUMP on it.

    You could probably turn it around for profit!! ;-)

    On that technician thing, all the service techs do training twice a year. That way the all get certified for everything in the pipeline. After four Chrysler-Dodge products (all good BTW), I can tell you the training doesn't help much. You still take everything back three times before they can figure out what's actually wrong!! :)
  • I have checked with 2 different Dodge dealerships here in Kansas City and neither one of them seemed to know what this car is. I tried to get on an ordering list today, but they said that it is not available yet. Anyone in or around KC know of a dealer that has heard of the SRT-4???!!!!???
  • hersbird where are these dealers located that you spoke of?
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323
    they are in Kellog, Idaho of all places but do a ton of business over the phone. That town pretty much looks like one huge Dodge dealer! Seeing as how Dave Smith is a 3 hour drive, the closer dealers will almost always match Dave Smiths pricing. The PT initialy was an exception for the closer guys, and this neon may be the same, but Smith kept the $300 over invoice the whole time on PT's including the limited "Dream Crusiers". The dealers likely do have a clue about the srt-4 (heck it's been featured with a full road test in every major automotive publication) they just always are trained to sell what they have on the lot right this minute. I don't think that they did end up in the computer ordering system on Monday as told, they haven't tried calling me back at least! Remember that an invoice deal on a $20,000 car is only about a $1000 savings so don't shop 2000 miles away to save $700. Then again don't pay $3000 over MSRP as some folks have envisioned!
  • Thanks for the info hersbird. Will have to continue hounding my local dealers until they have a clue. Anyone get pricing info on the upgrade packages yet? I doubt they are out, but just thought I'd ask. BTW, just a noobie question but what is a "farms" rebate. I've heard this term before but I don't know what it is.
  • hersbirdhersbird Posts: 323

    Our local farm bureau costs $40 a year to be an assiciate member (good enough for the $500 rebate, and other deals from other companies) and you only have to be a member for 30 days to qualify. You could order today, join the farm bureau today, and by the time the car came in you'd qualify for the $500 rebate. The Farm Bureau also uses the membership fees in many productive ways.

    PS. The SRT-4 may not qualify as Dodge is technically not calling it a Neon. It's it's own new line. I realize it's really still a neon with upgrades, but Dodge may use that as an excuse to flake out on the extra $500 off!
  • yositoyosito Posts: 55
    My son has a 2001 R/T since last june with just 7000 miles on it, and the car suddenly began having problems.
    You could drive the car and suddenly it was dead.
    Yes no energy at all, after a couple of minutes the energy was back and several more times.
    It visited the dealer SEVERAL times and the dealer changed the battery three times, I have to tell you that while performing several tests to the battery no faulty codes were observed, but since lately Chrysler is having trouble with batteries we decided to change it, but it wasn't the solution.
    Well chrysler ASKED US FOR MORE TIME to repair the vehicle, (The car was back at the dealer since july, so until last week they kept asking us FOR MORE TIME!!!).
    Well they finally decided to change the MAIN FUSE BOX with all the harness, they also replaced the starter and baterry harness plus the PCM, now the car is running with no problems, BUT I had to take it to ANOTHER DEALER, so they would place all the harnesses where they should be, put all the screws and clips, etc..etc... of which many were missing.
    I hope the car will NOW work fine, because my son drives it a lot on the highway, and when it dies there is no power steering or brakes, and no energy at all!!
    We know now this is not the first Neon with such a problem, but Chrysler service dept. Plus customer relations dept. at Chrysler STINK!!
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    your son's car is a regular Neon R/T, which is a completely different car than the new Neon SRT-4.

    you probably want to post in the regular Dodge Neon board to vent your frustration.
  • yositoyosito Posts: 55
    Thanks, but anyway the SRT-4 is still a NEON, so potential cusomers should read this before.
    And i´ll now paste this and post it in the Neon forum, thanks and take care.
  • It is NOT A NEON!! The only part this car has related in any form to a neon is the shell. So do your homework.
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