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The return of the Neon

by Bill Cawthon on

A new Dodge Neon is coming soon, but not for the U.S.

IndianAutoBlog, Motorpasión Mexico, and other sources reported that the Fiat Tipo is coming Mexico and South America, badged as the 2017 Dodge Neon, and using a Dart-like face — based on an image, credited to an FCA presentation, circulating on the Internet.


The Tipo, or Neon, is likely going to Latin America first because it fits the market well, and does not need to have a costly makeover to meet U.S. or Canadian rules.

The new Neon is likely to be little changed from the Fiat Tipo, outside of its looks. Since new production has not been announced, it will most likely come from the same plant (Tofas) as the Tipo. The Fiat has 1.4 and 1.6 liter gasoline engines, 1.3 liter and 1.6 liter diesels, and a five-speed manual or a six-speed automatic.

Trim levels are to follow Dodge tradition with SE, SXT, and SXT Plus. Air conditioning, standard on the SE in Europe, may not be included in Latin America — due to its price of 220,000 pesos (just over $12,000 US at today’s exchange rates).

Thanks to several Allpar readers for the tips!

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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