2017-2018 Dodge Dart SRT4 or GLH: what we expect
After the success of the original Dodge Neon SRT4, the creation of an SRT Dart seems almost a given, especially since Chrysler has already gotten 285 horsepower out of the turbocharged 2.4 liter engine. However, teething problems with the new turbocharged 2.0 liter “Hurricane” engine are causing its production to be delayed, and it is unlikely to pass 300 horsepower — so the Dart SRT would likely have a hard time running up against lighter cars in the same class. Thus, the GLH.
A reliable Allpar reader claims to have spotted a new Dart SRT4 near the Chrysler Tech Center. He did not want to reveal any specific technologies used in the car, but said he'd looked it over and under, and believed it was close to production. He wrote, "It is incredible! As much as I drooled over the Neon SRT4, the new one is...I cannot come up with words to describe it. The Abarth 500 is a tinker toy built by 3 year olds in comparison. If the fit and finish on the car I saw remains on production vehicles...there are going to be embarrassed people that will be backpedalling on their comments. The car was purposeful, and it let you know its purpose just sitting there without being something from Fast and Furious. It is a real driving machine.”
Ralph Gilles dropped hints about the SRT4, and Allpar members have been arguing over whether it would have front wheel drive (as both SRT4s had) or all wheel drive, which is believed to be on its way for the Dart (but hadn’t shown up yet for 2016).
The market for AWD “mini-supercars” like the Mitsubishi Evo and Subaru WRX STi has been falling sharply, and the idea of a $30,000 Dodge Dart might arouse the ire of pundits, so the jury is still out on whether the SRT4 will be based on the all wheel drive Dart.
At this point, it seems any performance version will be waiting for the 2017 model year, when Dart is up for a redesign; a GLH or SRT would call attention to the redesign, though if they cannot get the desired power from the new turbocharged Hurricane Four. Regardless, a turbocharged 2.0 would likely be both faster and more economical than the current 2.4 GT.
A Dodge Dart GLH concept car was shown in late 2015, using body kit, lightweight wheels, a big brake setup, an active air intake hood, a sport suspension setup, and a catback exhaust system, but apparently missing the turbocharger.