Amid all the May flowers, automotive fans can expect a big month from Dodge. The Detroit Free Press reports that full production of the compact 2013 Dodge Dart will begin in May. Chrysler sales chief Reid Bigland said the new Dart should hit Dodge dealers by mid-summer.
Ten thousand new Darts by July
According to Bigland, the automaker plans to produce at least 10,000 units of the 2013 Dodge Dart by July – 2,000 in May and at least 8,000 in June. Once the summer comes, he predicts that the company will build more than 12,000 Dodge Darts per month. In total, Chrysler plans to export the Dart to 40 countries, including Canada and Mexico.
First small car glow since Neon
The new Dart, which is being hailed as Chrysler’s “first credible compact car since the early 1990s” by the automotive press – will be produced in automaker’s factory in Belvidere, Ill. Insiders note that it will be Dodge’s first major compact since the Dodge Neon.
“It’s going to be late summer before we really hit the stride with all of the option availability,” Bigland said during a 2013 Dart press event Monday.
Fiat’s power of small-car expertise
Built on a platform that was adapted from that of the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, the Free Press asserts that the 2013 Dodge Dart will be “the first real test” of whether or not Fiat’s small-car expertise will invigorate the Chrysler brand. Considering that gas prices continue to rise, more consumers are looking to fuel-efficient small cars for travel and their daily commutes. Chrysler believes a small car like the 2013 Dodge Dart – which will start at $15,995 – will nicely fit the bill.
Dart locked on target
Launch of the new Dart is reportedly on schedule, even though most dealerships won’t have full stock until June.
“It’s not a concern,” Bigland said. “Given the size of the segment throughout North America and the enthusiasm for the Dart, we think it’s going to go OK.”
Rallying around the Dodge Dart
Not only does Chrysler believe that the 2013 Dodge Dart will make a splash in the consumer compact car market but in rally car racing as well. Extreme sports driving star Travis Pastrana, 28, will reportedly team with Dodge and SRT Motorsports to compete in the Global RallyCross Championship. Behind the wheel of a modified 2013 Dodge Dart, Pastrana will complete in the event, which combines circuit racing, off-road and rally competition into a single race.
A four-time Rally American Champion and 17-time X Games Gold Medalist, Pastrana is also a stunt performer, freestyle motocross racer and NASCAR participant.