Used Dodge Avenger review: 2007-2010
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It's widely acknowledged that the Australian car market is one of the toughest in the world, with more makes and models than you'll find almost anywhere else.
The mid-sized segment is one of the most competitive within the market, and it was into that motoring maelstrom that Chrysler plunged in 2007 when it launched its mid-sized Dodge Avenger sedan.
The Avenger was a mid-sized five-passenger sedan with muscular looks that set it apart from the crowd. Its chiselled lines, bluff panels and in-your-face grille were different to anything else in the market at the time, and for many took some getting used to.
The edgy styling was carried on inside where the cabi n was a sea of hard plastics that wasn't really very welcoming. At launch Chrysler offered a 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine that really struggled. It was smooth enough, but it failed to come to the party when asked to perform.
A 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine and a V6 were added to the range a few months later. The V6 gave the Avenger some much needed punch. In 2009 a 2.0-litre turbo-diesel was added to the range to give the Avenger a fuel-miser option. If the 2.4-litre engine struggled the four-speed auto that was tacked on the back of it didn't help.
It really needed another gear to help stir the four-banger along at anything like a decent clip. A five-speed manual was linked to the 2.0-litre engine when that was launched. When the V6 arrived on the scene in 2008 it had a six-speed auto, as did the turbo-diesel when it was launched a few months later. There was plenty of appeal when it came to the features list.
The base model SX came standard with climate-controlled air, cruise control, power windows and mirrors, remote central locking and four- speaker sound. Move up to the SXT and you got fog lamps, two extra speakers, leather trim, powered driver's seat, heated front seats, and larger alloy wheels.
In the shop
Little is really known about the Avenger in service. We hear little here at Carsguide, so we have to believe owners are happy with the purchases. Another slant on the lack of feedback from readers is that few Avengers found their way into the market, which is what is suspected. Although the Dodge brand is an old and certainly once respected one, it hasn't been here for many years and hasn't managed to get any real traction since its return.
There is no reason to think there is anything fundamentally wrong with the Avenger, but buying outside the top group of brands always needs careful consideration. Check any cars being considered for purchase to make sure they have been regularly serviced.
In a crash
With front, side and head airbags, ABS brakes, electronic stability control, and traction control the Avenger had a comprehensive array of safety gear should it become necessary. UNDER THE PUMP Dodge claimed the 2.4-litre four-cylinder would do 8.8 L/100 km; the V6 would return 9.9 L/100 km and the turbo-diesel 6.7 L/100 km.
Well equipped, economical mid-sized family car, but lacks sizzle on the road. Better stick with the known brands.
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