The Detroit News reports that after years of small profits, Chrysler pulled the plug on the Caliber. Introduced in 2006 as a replacement for the Dodge Neon, the Caliber was basically the worst of a bad bunch by many industry observers. Consumer Reports ranked the Caliber SXT at the bottom of its list of small hatchbacks and wagons in the 2011 annual car issue.
Analyst Jim Hall of 2953 Analytics LLP said he thought cars such as the Caliber, the Chevrolet Cobalt and previous generations of the Ford Focus were the products of “cynical thinking” and approved because the companies thought consumers who purchased the entry-level vehicles wouldn’t know any better.
Personally, the Dodge Caliber confused me because you don’t really know what to consider it. In some circles, it was considered as a small CUV- since it had four doors with a hatchback. In other circles, it was Dodge’s version of a compact car. Alas, I don’t have to wonder anymore.
However, Dodge hasn’t given up hope on a compact car, and they decided to re-release the new Dodge Dart. With the new and improved Dart, think of Fiat’s Alfa Romeo brand since that’s what it’s based off of. Take the Dodge Avenger and squish it a bit and round out the front fenders and take the lights from the Charger. Be prepared for the unveiling at the North American International Auto Show in the Big D- where Dodge, Ford, and Chevy battle to unveil lots and lots of goodies…