2013 Dodge Dart SXT Rallye: Lonely Buttons
November 25, 2013
The trunk release button is one of the Dart's mysteries. What designer decided to hang it out there by itself in the middle of the lower dash panel? The fuel door release, also floating by itself, this time on the driver-side door panel above the door pocket, is a similar mystery.
Whether this is just an Italian or Dodge design quirk, or a real case of slap-dashing interfaces, it's a small reminder that the Dart isn't yet ready to hang with the Civic, Focus or Forte. It's competent and at least gives Dodge a presence in the segment, ideally something to mark time until an American design team can re-imagine it from the ground up. But with inferior materials quality and fit-and-finish, and that wheezy drivetrain, the Dart is limited to competing on price, incentive and loyalty given other choices for compacts.
Bonus points for trimming the buttons with a chrome ring, however.
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor