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Dodge Avenger

In need of further improvement.

The Dodge Avenger made its first appearance in the mid-size-sedan category in 2008, but it never caught on, probably due to the fact that the Avenger was little more than average in looks, dynamics, and build quality. Dodge delivered a refresh for 2011, but the mild exterior face-lift didn’t do much to save the Avenger from its dated look. For 2013, there’s not much to talk about. The mid-size sedan still comes with a standard 173-hp, 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that is mated to a standard four-speed automatic transmission; a six-speed automatic is optional. Buyers can shell out a little more cash to get the more powerful 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The V-6 puts out 283 hp and returns a respectable 29 mpg on the highway. Decent materials and stylish trim enhance the car’s interior, but the cabin’s major features are supportive seats and a thick-rimmed steering wheel. The Avenger’s biggest obstacle is the wealth of competition in the mid-size-sedan segment. Chrysler appears to be moving in the right direction with the Avenger, but this car is going to need more than a face-lift before it can compete with the likes of the Honda Accord and Ford Fusion, which have upped their games with recent redesigns.

COMPETITORS

Chevrolet Malibu

Ford Fusion

Honda Accord

Toyota Camry

new for 2013

R/T models are $500 cheaper than they were last year, and SXT models now have heated leather seats. There’s an available Rallye Appearance Group that includes eighteen-inch twin-spoke wheels, a rear spoiler, tinted headlights, and a color-matched grille.

SAFETY EQUIPMENT

Front, side, and side curtain air bags; stability and traction control; a tire-pressure monitoring system; and ABS are standard.

High Mileage

MPG

CITY 19–21

HWY 29–31

PRO

Reasonably priced

Decently finished interior

Fairly roomy

CON

Better choices in the segment

Dated exterior styling

Base Price Range: $19,990–$26,490

SPECIFICATIONS

DRIVE: Front-wheel

TRIM LEVELS: SE, SXT, R/T

BODY STYLE: Sedan, 5-passenger

ENGINES: 2.4L I-4, 173 hp, 166 lb-ft

3.6L V-6, 283 hp, 250 lb-ft

TRANSMISSIONS: 4- or 6-speed automatic

PASSENGER VOLUME: 100.2 cu ft

CARGO SPACE: 13.5 cu ft

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