2013 Dodge Dart SXT Rallye Suspension Walkaround

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,130
edited September 2014 in Dodge

image2013 Dodge Dart SXT Rallye Suspension Walkaround

Our new 2013 Dodge Dart SXT Rallye may look like a sportier successor to the Neon, but underneath lurks the chassis of the acclaimed Alfa Romeo Giulietta.

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  • prof_lavahotprof_lavahot Member Posts: 2
    I love these articles! I'm curious about the lug bolt-vs.-lug nut advantages...I had never seen the lug bolts until I serviced my girlfriend's MINI, and while it's more annoying to line the wheel up and hold it there while you install a bolt, I guess the threads aren't damaged by removing the wheel? Surely there's more to it than that.

    Keep up the great articles, I've read them all and want to see more classics (it really is all Macpherson struts these days, isn't it?). The solutions engineers come up with for these suspension problems is always interesting and if I can generate similar high-quality photos of a project car someday I'd love to send it in!
  • fordson1fordson1 Unconfirmed Posts: 1,512
    Lug bolts are easy once you get used to them - after getting the car jacked up and all bolts removed except the one at the top (so the wheel/tire is hanging from the bolt), you crouch down and get your knee onto the center cap of the wheel, and lean into it. Remove the last bolt. Grab the wheel/tire and release your knee pressure and pull away from the car. To install, position the wheel/tire on the face of the rotor, position your knee and lean, install top bolt - then you can either install the rest of them while in that position or release knee pressure first.
  • throwbackthrowback Member Posts: 445
    I agree completely about Summer tires. I have them on my cars and put snows on for the winter. It's amazing how far passenger suspension has advanced over the years. At least it's amazing to a guy who grew pu with solid axles, leaf springs and drum brakes. All in cast iron thank you very much.
  • lhslhs Member Posts: 3
    The 63 Dart was a great car in its day. They were by far the best driving compact and they were very reliable. I still own a 1963 Dart GT with the slant six and auto and drive it daily in the summer. It has 92K miles and is all original. The engine runs great and the transmission is still smooth shifting. I just took it on a 250 mile trip and drove 70 to 75. It is comfortable and easy to drive. Technology has obviously moved on but in its day it was an outstanding car. Many went over 200k with out engine or transmission repair. We used them as Co. cars and never even considered replacement until 150k. There have been very few cars that would take the abuse a Dart would and still keep on running reliably. Over the years I have owned Seven Darts and Valiants and they were all great cars.
  • duck87duck87 Member Posts: 649
    I was mildly surprised when I saw the front doesn't use the double bolt method for damper to knuckle attachment. Then again, apparently some Europeans aren't fond of the whole alignment thing ("If the car needs alignment then something is out of spec!"). The plus side is that the suspension layout is pretty easy to adjust (in the back) and pretty easy to service/repair too. I have to wonder how much the hubs and rear trailing arm weigh though... hollow aluminum or not they look pretty hefty. Looks like a great setup overall.
  • rickibobbirickibobbi Member Posts: 21
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  • metallurgistmetallurgist Member Posts: 2
    Pretty impressive for a non-premium compact car! I think this platform has a lot of potential.
  • huisjhuisj Member Posts: 1
    Now if they'd just sell a hatchback version of this car like the platform was intended for...
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaMember Posts: 451
    On the subject of lug bolts vs studs: Endurance showroom stock race teams I have observed on the grid and in the pits always ditch their lug bolts and replace them with studs and nuts. It is simply faster, and bad threads are easier to repair. And when I'm going slow at home I like having the ability to hang the wheel on the studs when the last nut comes off. The main advantage of a lug bolt is the ability to hang the wheel without needing to line up studs first. But you still have to do that by holding it seated against the flange with your knee (awkward at first, but you get used to it.) Then, while holding pressure, you clock it until the wheel lines up with the threaded holes in the hub. Stab the first lug bolt home and screw it nearly all the way home before you release pressure and do the others.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • mrw356mrw356 Member Posts: 1
    If everything else about the Dart is as well engineered as this chassis, I think they would have a winner. I am impressed by the massive aluminum sub-frames both front and rear and that they are sourced from Alfa Romeo. This is hidden engineering that I'll bet most buyers of this car will never know about.
  • swiftywombatswiftywombat Member Posts: 1
    Great looking aluminum castings.
    How did the Dart get so heavy?
    How hard would it be to make it 150 lbs. lighter? Remember the ACR Neon? No exterior molding, electric windows, stereo, few or no automatics, optional AC etc. 8K tach, adjustable Konis, no rev limiter and a manual. Minimal weight; lets go racing. For money!
    There is also a great European heritage FCA should consider; leave out a bunch of content, and charge much more for it! Alfa 4C comes to mind. Let the enthusiast choose how much discomfort can be tolerated for more performance.
    The present hp and torque figures should be what the engine produces at the wheels rather than the crank.
    Where is the aluminum hood and tuning bits they have been hyping for years? What is Mopar waiting for? Hopefully I will live long enough to see the 9 speed on a Dart that is no more than 3000 lbs. and no less than
    220 hp WITHOUT a turbo. Look at base curb weight of the new Jeep Renegade. I know it is apples and oranges. I do not hear the journalists complaining about the 2.4 liter motor performance in that package.
    If the Dart is doomed to be more than 3300 pounds, it needs to be a 4x4.
    FCA seems oddly determined to not have the Dart live up to its potential.
    The serious performance car manufacturers already produce cars that exceed these specs and get at least 30 mpg.
    How serious is FCA?
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