While the 2014 Dodge Dart press kit shows the 2.4 liter engine as getting at most 23 mpg city, 33 highway (with a manual transmission), those numbers may have simply been copied from the 2013 materials.
Dealers have been sent newer information, claiming that the new 184 horsepower 2.4 liter engine in Dart is rated at 36 mpg (highway) with the manual, and 35 with the automatic — one mile per gallon higher, with the automatic, than the 2.0 engine now relegated to the base Dart SE. (Official EPA ratings are not yet available from the government web site.) However, these ratings may yet change — a Chrysler spokesman told us that no official ratings had come down yet.
Every 2014 Dodge Dart except SE and Aero come with the 2.4 engine, which was originally earmarked for the GT model alone. Retuning the engine for better economy appears to have led Chrysler to almost completely replace the 2.0 liter engine, which generates 24 horsepower and 26 lb-ft of torque less than the MultiAir-equipped 2.4.
Since most buyers opt for automatic transmissions, the 2.4 will end up providing better highway mileage than the 2.0 in most cases.
This change directly addresses most of the criticism about the Dart, which centered around power in the 2.0, responsiveness in the 1.4, and gas mileage in the 2.4. The company addressed the other primary problem pundits had with the Dart, by changing the seat design for greater comfort.
The Dart GT will continue to have a performance emphasis, with a unique air intake, engine calibration, transmission ratios, and exhaust, keeping gas mileage lower than other Darts. Dart GT is rated at 23 city, 33 highway with the manual, 21/30 with the automatic.
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Dodge is showing four concept cars at SEMA: a Dart, Charger, Challenger, and Viper ACR. You can now see them all at Allpar, courtesy of Patrick Rall — now with the story behind them. Coming soon: Jeep, Ram, Chrysler, and Fiat concepts. See all the Dodge concepts