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Here's my own review of the SRT-4. Since I put well over 1200 miles on one within a 24-hour
period I figured I'm as qualified as anyone else to pass a little judgment. In my judgment it's a
great car! Here are the details.

When I got in the driver's seat I was immediately impressed. They have a way of making you
feel very secure. These seats are screaming "Drive hard!" However, as I got farther into my long
trip home I began to look forward to stopping for fuel, coffee, pottie breaks, whatever. These are
racing seats, not long distance touring seats. In particular I found my legs getting sore, and even
my neck. The thigh bolsters are so high that moving your legs around is almost impossible. I
attributed my minor neck pain to the way the seats prevented me from moving my shoulders
around. It is a snug fit and I'm not a big guy (5'10", 185 lbs.). As long as you stick to the
intended design the cockpit seats are fabulous, but I can't recommend them for long jaunts, and
certainly not for large people.

Another nice seating feature is the leg room you get. Tall, thin people should like this car a lot.
With the seat adjusted all the way back I was able to push the clutch pedal all the way to the floor
only if using my tip-toes, and I have a 34" inseam. Headroom is plenteous also. Unfortunately,
the height of the seat backs prevented me from seeing over them when trying to look over my
shoulder. Instead, I found myself twisting around to get a good view of what was behind.

I found that I didn't care much for the tilt steering device. It's a friction-lock type. You push
down on the lever on the left side of the column which allows you to adjust the column up and
down. When you have the column where you want it you push the lever back up to lock the
column in place. It's an awkward procedure, especially if you try it while driving, which the
owner's manual recommends that you don't do.

There are a couple of nifty map lights built into the rear-view mirror. The switches, mounted on
the bottom of the mirror, show a small white bar when in the "on" position. They do not operate
without the ignition in the run or accessory position, so battery drain is prevented, which is a
good thing because you can't see them at all in the daylight.

The AM/FM/CD radio is fairly easy to figure out even without referring to the owner's manual.
The sound quality isn't too bad, but it has obviously been engineered to appeal to the car's
intended target audience. Even with the bass control set in the middle the rear speakers emit a
bass thump that drowns out most of the other frequencies. Not exactly a true audiophile's dream.
On the other hand, AC/DC sounded darn good!

Speaking of sound, I like the exhaust note quite a bit. Not too loud, not too quiet, not too ricey.

I'm still getting used to the clutch pedal operation. It seems that if I don't push it all the way to
the floor I'm grinding gears. It definitely isn't like my '77 Ford truck. All the action on the SRT-
4 is down at the floor.

The engine impressed me more and more as the miles racked up. Boost comes on very fast, at
least compared to my Shelby Charger with its hybrid turbo. Almost as soon as your foot hits the
floor the boost is at 14 psi, even at sub-2000 rpm. I'm tempted to say that this car doesn't even
need a boost controller if you plan to stay at stock boost level. There, I did say it. Second or third gear, 2000 rpm,
mash down on the accelerator, and you're there--14 psi. It didn't set me back in the seat quite like
the Shelby Charger but the torque is there when you ask for it. My Shelby Charger delivers a
wallop of a punch when the turbo spools up, but the SRT-4 isn't designed that way. Power
delivery is more linear and smooth, but definitely there.

I don't think that dumping the balance shaft assembly is going to cause unreasonable vibration.
In the first place, if you're looking for a glassy smooth family car you shouldn't be thinking
about the SRT-4. Suspension is stiff, exhaust is rumbly, the seats are not for long trips to
Grandma's, and it's packing over 200 hp under the hood. Who needs balance shafts?

Despite their narrow profile I found that the tires performed very well, even in the wet. And
almost all of my drive was in the wet. Since my mileage consisted of mainly interstate travel I
can't comment on performance in the twisties, but the Michelins earned my respect in the rain.
More than once I drove through deep standing water at highway speeds, sometimes losing as
much as 10 mph in the process, but I perceived no hydroplaning. The rubber kept a straight line
and maintained good traction all the time. Rapid entrances and exits on wet ramps were no
problem either. They do make a bit of noise though, singing whenever they cross seams or small
bumps in the pavement. It's not enough to bother you, but it is very noticeable.

I'm extremely close to being 40 years old so I wasn't too enthused about the wing thing,
however, I received a surprise or two. Surprise #1 was that it didn't block the view out of the
rearview mirror. Everything you need to see will be under the wing. The only thing above it is
sky. As long as I was looking out of the mirror it didn't bother me. It did become slightly
annoying whenever I looked to my right to check my blind spot before changing lanes. Almost
every time, I would see the wing in my peripheral and my brain would tell me that it was another
car right behind me. It will take some getting used to. Surprise #2 was the biggest. I think I'm
actually starting to like the wing. For some reason, each time I looked through the rearview
mirror it grew on me a little more, until, by the time I got home I was thinking, "The wing is
pretty cool." Strange what 1200 miles alone driving in the rain can do to a person.

That shift knob? It's not the worst thing I've ever seen in a car but it does lack style. For crying
out loud, they could have at least slathered some black paint on the shift pattern or something!
Another thing I don't like, that cheesy horn. If you've been to the SRT-4 web site and honked the
horn, it really does sound exactly like that. I'm thinking that DCX got a good deal on some
surplus Vespa scooter horns and decided to use them on the SRT-4. Here's some good advice for
all SRT-4 owners. When you're trying to look cool, hangin' with your homeys or trying to
impress some girl, . . . don't honk the horn!

A few interesting tidbits for your consideration.
*Fog lights can only be turned on when the
headlights are on. Too bad. They would make neat driving lights during dusk/dawn.
*The owner's manual recommends Mopar ATF+4 automatic transmission fluid for the
transmission and power steering pump. All I can say about that is that I hope the price has come
down considerably since last time I bought some. A year ago it was $8/quart!
*Maximum tire pressure is 51 psi!
*There is a nifty little bleed valve (just like a brake bleed valve) on the thermostat housing.

Bottom line: I really like this car a lot!
Questions welcomed.
 

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Question for ya

What color is the instrument cluster when it lights up? And is there a factory installed alarm or is it just keyless entry? Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The lighting behind the panels is white, but it shines through the instruments. All of the pointers are red and the numbers are kind of an aqua blue color, including the boost gauge.

No alarm. The remote has 4 buttons, lock, unlock, trunk lid release, and panic button (flashes lights and honks the horn).
 

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Gauge Cluster lights up Blue at night.... the Redline lights up as a red dot Matrix area.

Although the car sounds like it should have an alarm, it seems to only be keyless entry(with panic button on remote). The factory Build sheets also only states "Keyless Entry sys. W/2 Transmitters".

Havent tried to molest the car yet, but I'll give it a try for you at lunch.
 

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What he said. I am 6'2", 220, and I fit ok in the seats. For some reason the drivers seat is more comfy than the passenger, as far as long term seating goes, the thigh bolsters kinda bug me because I like to brace my knee on the door for long drives. As far as the alarm goes, I am gonna see if I can jury rig one to use the same remote as the keyless entry. The dealer said I could get fleet price of $600 for an alarm, + installation. Um, no.
 

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Thanks

I appreciate the review very much. I was very concerned about the seats as far as long rides were concerned.

Cleared that up for me.

Cali
 

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Excellent review...very well thought out and accurate. :)

The seats seem to be a sticking point for some. I think you either love them or don't. Personally, it only took me about 50 miles to swear that I never wanted another car seat as long as I live. I've never enjoyed cornering and turns as much as I do in this car.
 

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Excellent review !! I have to agree on most of the points you brought up, although to me the seats don't bother me even over a fair distance (270 miles home from dealer).

It looks like the car is going to have a wider age appeal than DCX thought (I'm 48 ), and I have gotten used to the wing too. Except when backing-up.

Congrats on the car !!
 

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funny stuff Terminator and i were hanging around at the track and he was telling me some of quibbles. " i cant stand the fact you have to open the trunk with the key fob" i reach in the glove box and push the release " wow i didnt know that..." says he....LMAO i was also explaining to him that pre-03' neons with ABS came with Traction control and an off switch where you guys get that spave by the lighter socket. We also discussed the rear cupholder...he got a kick out of this one...did you guys know that if you swing your center console door all the way back itsgot a cupholder and a tissue dispenser built into it? or that you can store CD cases or Tape cases in the center console? i know SRT-4's like the back of my hand why? because i had 2nd gen Neons and as sad as this may sound they are so similar that after the countless rides ive been on in SRT's i feel like im right at home
 

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i agree completely. one time someone in the back had a drink and there and i thought they were done and i wanted my armrest back. needless to see when i got home i had some cleanup to do :p

i wonder if lifeisdeath has 2nd gen, maybe if he did he'd back off the its not a neon bit (just yankin your chain some more bud)

for any that missed it there's a video of a srt beating a 03 wrx check the org or it may be on here, not sure.
 

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no i never had a 2nd gen asshole! :p i call it an srt-4 because thats what dodge decided to call it. if dodge slapped on a neon badge to the car then i would agree with y'all. but being as they didnt, i dont. so there.
 

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its a 2nd gen Neon. like i said in another thread...you nay sayers should realize if there wasnt a PL2000 chassis (00+ Neon) there would be no PT Cruiser or SRT4 so quit being ungreatfull and come to grips!
 

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acr2nv said:
its a 2nd gen Neon. like i said in another thread...you nay sayers should realize if there wasnt a PL2000 chassis (00+ Neon) there would be no PT Cruiser or SRT4 so quit being ungreatfull and come to grips!
or maybe you need to come to grips. if there wasnt a ford none of us would have cars. do you drive a ford? cars change.

example. do you know anyone that drives a 2003 acura integra? no? how about an rsx? yes? hmmmm... did you know in japan there is no rsx... it is an integra type-r. so if we call it an rsx, and they call it an integra, which one is it? both the same car.... guess everyone will have to start calling it an integra since thats what the holy land of JDM calls it.

no? guess what... they call it an integra, thats what it is to them. honda usa calls it an rsx, thats what it is to us. if dodge calls it an srt-4 and not a neon, guess what? it is an srt-4. besides the fact that the chassis' arent exactly the same...

by the way, the srt-4 has a Chasis Code : PLDS41, so i guess it isnt a '00+ neon. :p
 

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sadly i did...notice the past tense and there u are wrong too if it werent for Mercedes-Benz most of you all wouldnt be able to drive....think about that one
 

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175srt05 said:
Sounds like a great neon.



I see everyone is bored...Neon :thumbsup:
 
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