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Dodge to abandon Mainstreet for 2012

by David Zatz on

Dodge will drop the new Express, Heat, and Mainstreet models on the Avenger, according to sources within the organization, in favor of the traditional SE and R/T models, accompanied by the new Lux and new-old Rallye names. The R/T will be getting a unique interior with a center tachometer, “Z-stripe” seats, “spider monkey” wheels, fender stripes, and red LED ambient lighting.

Most customers are expected to opt for the mid-range Rallye model, with around half opting for the four and half for the six.

Journey will carry forward with its Express, R/T, and Lux, renaming Mainstreet to Crew. The Lux will gain chrome on the sides, and Crew will get fog lamps. Most buyers are expected to go for Crew and Crew Plus.

Grand Caravan will adopt the new names, with four models: Express, Crew, Crew Plus, and R/T. Most buyers are again expected to go for the two Crew models. Mainstreet is being swapped for Crew, while the existing Crew is moving to Crew Plus. Numerous option package changes are being made, leather quad seats are being made optional on R/T, and a new “sapphire blue” interior lighting setup is being added.

Durango is the only model to keep the Heat name; CrewLux, however, is being dropped. Late in the year, Dodge is expected to add second-row Captain’s Chairs, and as Allpar reported earlier, the six-speed Chrysler-engineered 65RFE automatic is expected to replace the 545RFE five-speed on V8 models only.

Nitro is expected to return as an extended-2011, possibly only in the Heat model, with both 3.7 and 4.0 liter engines; this may be a simple “spare parts buildout” exercise with assembly ending before calendar-year 2012, but well after most other models have switched over.

David Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304

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