The 2014 Dodge Avenger is an improvement over the last few models, but it’s still not on par with its competitors. The biggest issue is performance – because despite its 283-horsepower 3.6-litre V6 being one of the most powerful engines in this segment, the sedan’s handling makes it often clunky and uncontrollable.
The 2014 Dodge Avenger boasts slick exterior design along with a host of awesome features that sweeten the driving experience. The one area where the car suffers the most is performance, but it’s not on par with the competition in several other important areas too – and we’ll look at those as well.
Historically, the Avenger is the product of the time when Chrysler, its venerable creator, has collapsed into bankruptcy. During that time, this car was a rental at best. Times have changed, however, and so has the Avenger. Those changes admittedly are for the better, but they’re not huge changes. Just like a certain other sedan in the Chrysler lineup, the 200, this vehicle symbolises the company’s pitfalls, not its successes. It’s also been consistently failing to compete against the likes of the Ford Fusion, Hyundai Sonata, Honda Accord and Nissan Altima. Add to that the recent news cementing the Avenger’s demise and it becomes clear that there’s something fundamentally wrong with this vehicle.
The new Dodge Avenger still follows its “tough guy” mantra, sporting a hard-edged cross-hair grille surrounded by a pair of large headlights and distinctly pronounced fender arches. At the back, you’ll notice that the fender line rises and attaches itself to the sedan’s hefty taillights, which match the ones at the front. If you want this thing to be even more expressive, you can add a swooping back spoiler, which is available as one of the options. The V6 engine model will get you dual exhaust tips, while the R/T variant comes with a body-colour grille and dark trim. Finally, you can choose between 17- and 18-inch wheels in the SE and SXT trims, while the R/T gets larger wheels as a standard.
Inside, the 2014 Avenger offers a decent-looking layout with quality materials and comfortable seats. The front seating area is particularly comfortable thanks to nice bolstering and support. All seats get aesthetically pleasing patterns, while the car’s various panels are soft to the touch. The R/T trim comes with more athletic seats that have leather bolsters, a neat gauge cluster and racing car-like pedal pads. The back seats are not bad, but they won’t fit adults of all sizes since taller individuals might find their legroom a bit constraining.
Some of the standard features include a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, manual-adjust driver’s seat, 60/40 split-folding back seats and an AM/FM/CD/satellite radio with auxiliary jack and four speakers. The optional ones are the Uconnect infotainment system with a colour touchscreen and hard drive; heated front seats; and engine block heater for cold weather conditions.
Under the hood, there’s a selection of two engines. The standard one is the 2.4-litre inline four-cylinder, which can produce 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque. This powertrain is functional, but it’s not exactly smooth or well-refined, being combined with the old four-speed automatic transmission. As such, the better option here is the 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 engine, which you can get in the SE and SXT models. It’s standard in the R/T, however. It can produce 283 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque, which makes the Avenger the most powerful vehicle in its class. It’s also much smoother and more refined than the other engine, being combined with the newer six-speed automatic transmission. That being said, it does have a torque steer issue since it relies on hydraulic power steering, while having a lower ride height at the front than in the back. As such, there are some handling issues here.
Overall, the 2014 Dodge Avenger is not the best car as far as ownership is concerned due to numerous performance issues and a somewhat restrictive cabin. It’s worth a rental, but if you’re looking for a good midsize sedan, try Ford or Honda.
2014 Dodge Avenger
Reviewed by Unhaggle on June 5.
Rating: 7.6 / 10
|Trim / Style||MSRP||Est. Monthly Payment||Average Price||Invoice Price|
|Canada Value Package||$19,995||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|R/T||$29,495||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SXT||$24,495||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|Number of Doors||4|
|Drive Train||Front Wheel Drive|
|Power and Performance:|
The 2014 Dodge Avenger SE and SXT come with a standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder that produces 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent to the front wheels through a four-speed automatic transmission in the SE and a six-speed automatic in the SXT. The six-speed is optional for the SE.
Either way, though, fuel economy is below average for a midsize sedan, with EPA-estimated 24 mpg combined (21 city/29 highway) with the four-speed and 23 mpg combined (20 city/31 highway) with the six-speed.
Optional on the SXT and standard on the Dodge Avenger R/T is a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 283 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard with this engine. (You may eventually encounter used SE models with the V6 engine as well, but for cars that are purchased new, it's a fleet-only option and unavailable to general consumers.)
Read more on Edmunds.
|Interiors and Special Features:|
The 2014 Dodge Avenger's interior is more than merely competitive with those of other mid-size sedans, with an attractive layout, quality materials, comfortable and supportive front seats with proper bolsters, pleasing fabric patterns, and numerous soft-touch panels. The R/T trim level includes sportier seats with leather bolsters, a nice gauge cluster and racy-looking pedal pads. Audiophiles will appreciate the Avenger's quiet interior for listening to the optional Boston premium speakers. The back seat is acceptable for adults, if not great, and will fold in a 60/40 split. The front passenger seat folds flat.
Originally appeared on Kelley Blue Book.
The 2014 Dodge Avenger comes with standard stability control, 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes and six airbags (front, front side, full-length side curtain). In government crash testing, the Avenger received an overall rating of four stars out of five, while the independent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Avenger its top rating of Good in every category.
Originally appeared on Auto Trader.
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