2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4 Stage 2
Also featured: 2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo RS
THE EDITORS OF AUTOWEEK
Published Date: 8/23/04
2004 DODGE NEON SRT-4 STAGE 2
DATE IN FLEET:July 21-28
AS-TESTED PRICE: $25,690
POWERTRAIN: 2.4-liter turbocharged I4; fwd, five-speed manual
OUTPUT: 265 hp @ 5200 rpm, 280 lb-ft @ 3600-4800 rpm
CURB WEIGHT: 2970 pounds
WILSON: This puts a lot of fun into the Neon package, without as much torque steer as I’d feared—just as in the day of Shelby Chargers, a limited-slip diff helps a lot. Speaking of those days, this is a car bolted together much better than those Shelbys, but it goes as hard. I’ll bet it lasts longer, too. And ignore the double entendre from the foregoing, please. (Blonde walks into a bar, says to the bartender, "I’ll have a double entendre," so he gave it to her.)
It’s a Neon inside, so some of the plastic seems greasy or something, and that basket handle on the decklid had me looking for tailgaters in my blind spot every time I caught it out of the corner of my eye.
:flame: As a driver, I might prefer the (lamentably short-lived) SVT Focus, even if this’d kick its butt. Not much to delight in from a control/feel standpoint, :tongue: except that the brakes are easy to modulate, but it goes like stink. Driving a fast small car fast—I found myself doing the same things I did in our Mini Cooper S—is even more fun than driving a slow small car fast.