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Old 01-02-2013, 11:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default so who can tell me about dodge calibers?

the wife seems to like them when we went by the local carmax the other day. Main reason I take her to carmax is because they have a lot to look at variety-wise. never really thought she'd actually like them either.

anyway, looks to have the standard non-turbo 2.4 engine in them, I'm correct on this right?

what are some of the common issues these things have that I should be on the lookout now that she has these on her very short list.

any normal wear/tear items to look out for? do these have timing belts or chains on them and such.

any of the various trim levels come with a decent sound system? her kizashi has the fosgate system and she's become addicted to her bass haha.

thanks guys! and yeah, I'm going to be reading about them on wikipedia and such but figured I'd post here first since I'm so busy at work right now.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The 2.4 in them is not related to the neon 2.4, it is their new "world" engine that I believe they still use today.

I've ridden in a friends and wasn't too impressed, but I guess if you like the looks and need/want the hatchback they don't seem too bad.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
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The caliber is such a pile of garbage. I would never want to own one. I would definitely look into a Dart, or if you really need a hatch, a hatchback Focus.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I wouldn't call them garbage unless they have reliability issues that I'm not aware of, I just don't like the looks and the build quality is on the same level as a neon, which most would attribute to being bad.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:45 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My friend puts it pretty well. They're an abortion of a car. Mitsubishi bailed while they were still designing it (aborted). It's based on the Lancer chassis, but it's a thrown together pile of crap. Probably one of the worst cars chrysler has popped out in recent years.
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Old 01-02-2013, 01:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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yeah and trying to change a woman's mind once its made up is like trying to split the red sea...and that only happened once in a book written over 2000 years ago haha.

so aside from being cheaply made, which I could already tell, do they have any common reliability issues?

On my 06 f150 I've had to rebuild the rearend due to the clutch packs burning up, I've had to extract broken 2-piece spark plugs from the heads that got stuck due to crappy design, and had to deal with coil pack and TPS issues.

I'm not really wanting to repeat any of this which is why I'm asking. does the drivetrain or accessories in the caliber have any of these types of issues? does it have timing belts that like to snap at 30k miles? Just looking for good info guys.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Get her a Compass instead. New interiors, and they're pretty much the same car inside.



Also - if you're lookin for the weaknesses, it's probably the CVT. Most people dislike them, we didn't have a problem with the one in our Patriot, but alot of people bitched. lol
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:03 AM   #8 (permalink)
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yeah, I like the jeep compass but she wants a hatchback instead of an suv crossover just because we'll be soon adding a little one to our family aside from our two dogs...but it has to be able to fit into "compact car" slots in the parking garage she uses for work in downtown charleston.

We've had her current car next to a couple various hatches and surprisingly enough, the caliber has about the same dimensions. the mazda3 is wider and the subaru outback is longer. As it is sometimes she has issues getting in/out in the parking garage with other people's bad parking habits.

I guess can anyone else think of some hatchbacks maybe? the subaru and mazda are the only ones I can really think of in this size range.
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:28 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I rented a caliber on an insurance claim. I must say that it was the worst vehicle I have ever driven. My model was the SXT variant with the 2.0L world engine. It had a CVT in it which drove me nuts. I was used to driving a stock MTX 1998 neon r/t and when I hit the gas it would go when I told it to. I live in a densely populated city and need to be quick when I say so. The caliber would not go when told. For instance, I am pulling out into traffic from a grocery store, gas station, etc.. I would floor the gas since traffic is moving at 45-55 MPH. The caliber would rev to about 6k and then launch (not really a launch, more like an "I'll go if I have to"). It maybe took a second or two to go, but at 45-55 mph with oncoming that is a loooong time. I am sure I probably pissed off a few people by pulling out in front of them like a grandma. Also IMO the rear view is worse that my SRT with the wing. I had a real hard time seeing out the back of the vehicle. Also the A pillars obstruct a lot of view.

I had that POS for a full 30 days and I rejoiced when I had to return it.

I can't comment on reliability issues. I figure it is the same as most vehicles at the same price point. It does have a timing belt like the previous 2.0 and 2.4 engines. Fuel economy was average. I used it to commute 60 miles a day and the MPGs were slightly lower than my neon.

My .02 would be to avoid the caliber unless you can live with the CVT. I hated it with a passion.

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Old 01-04-2013, 02:03 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The compass has the exact same footprint as the Caliber, which is NOT a small hatchback. It's actually pretty big, but it's hatch is just a different shape than the Compass. They are literally the same vehicle, just the Compass is way better, IMO. (I like the Patriot, myself, but if she doesn't want an SUV looking car, then the Compass is it)

I was looking at price point; the Subaru Impreza might be a good one to go with. The compass will still be cheaper on the wallet though. Maintenance, Insurance and MPG I think takes a hit too with the AWD. The Compass comes in FWD or "4x4".

Edit - Also 2014 models will be getting 6-speed automatics to replace the CVT's as well; in both Patriot & Compass.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:05 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Front suspension is a problem, get comfy replacing LCAs and such.

Get a 2010+ Caliber. At least they have a tolerable interior.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:14 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I have had no issues with my Caliber SRT4 and it has 72k on it. I love it and would never trade it in for anything, but I also wouldnt own a caliber unless it was a SRT.
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Old 01-18-2013, 09:34 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I drive a caliber srt and will probably keep it forever. Would never get a regular caliber though. IF you have to get a caliber. Teach her how to drive manual and get a SRT.
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Old 01-18-2013, 09:48 PM   #14 (permalink)
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run far far away, pos since they came out..worst Dodge vehicle to date other than the Sebring....
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