Recall Alert: 2014 Dodge Durango, Jeep Grand Cherokee

2014JeepGrandCherokeeRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 132,000 model-year 2014 Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs manufactured between Oct. 3, 2013, and April 11, 2014

The Problem: Due to an issue with the software for the steering column control module, the electronic stability control system may be disabled. If this happens, in certain driving situations the driver may not be able to adequately control the vehicle, increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Chrysler will begin notifying owners Dec. 5, and dealers will update the steering column control module software for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Chrysler at 800-853-1403, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 29, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Dodge Charger: First Drive

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By William Jackson

Dodge shoots for a broad market with its redesigned Charger, aiming to be a practical family sedan that, if so desired, can have 707 horsepower under the hood. In doing so, Dodge has the unenviable job of making a mass-market car for enthusiasts.

Related: Dodge Prices 2015 Charger Lineup

Of course, it's one thing to stuff an enormous engine in a sedan and call it a family car, or to take a track monster and claim it can handle grocery runs. It's a whole other thing to actually pull it off in the real world. Early impressions indicate that Dodge largely succeeds.

By David Thomas | October 28, 2014 | Comments (2)

Toyota Leads, Fiat-Chrysler Disappoints in Consumer Reports' Latest Reliability Study

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Toyota and its Lexus subsidiary earned the top two spots in Consumer Reports' 2014 Auto Survey (subscription required), which rates reliability from consumer surveys of some 1.1 million vehicles over the past 12 months. Of the 28 brands ranked in terms of predicted reliability, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Fiat, Jeep, Ram and Dodge brands landed in the bottom four slots. At the top and bottom of the survey, those results played out similarly to Consumer Reports' study a year ago.

Related: Porsche Flies, Fiat Flails in 2014 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study

Buggy multimedia systems, including navigation systems, Bluetooth and smartphone compatibility, garnered the most complaints. It's a recurring trend, Consumer Reports notes, and respondents to J.D. Power and Associates' Initial Quality Study have expressed similar frustrations.

But rankings between the two have otherwise limited correlation. Consumer Reports says its reliability study surveys subscribers for malfunctions on existing cars, whether recently purchased or older. J.D. Power says its IQS surveys those who recently bought a new car for objective malfunctions and subjective dislikes in the first 90 days of ownership. J.D. Power ranked 32 brands in its IQS this year; Consumer Reports ranked 28. Five brands made the top 10 in both studies: Honda, Kia, Lexus, Porsche and Toyota. Just three brands made the bottom 10 in both: Fiat, Infiniti and Jeep. To some degree, that cements the reliability — or lack thereof — for those eight.

By Kelsey Mays | October 27, 2014 | Comments (8)

Dodge Prices 2015 Charger Lineup

2015DodgeCharger

Hot on the 2015 Dodge Challenger's trail of burnt rubber comes its four-door muscle-car mate, the Charger. Chrysler has announced pricing on the newly updated Charger lineup — including the 707-horsepower SRT Hellcat — with the starting price of all but one model increasing by no more than $1,000. The base SE trim starts at $28,990, including a $995 destination charge. That's $1,000 more than the 2014 version, but Chrysler says it's the "most-equipped entry Charger model ever." The 2015 Charger is available in SE, SXT, R/T and SRT trims.

Related: 2015 Dodge Charger: First Look

Last year's SRT8 models are replaced by the SRT 392 and SRT Hellcat, the latter of which starts at a range-topping $64,990. Up from three in 2014, the lineup now offers four engines: the base 3.6-liter V-6, 5.7-liter V-8, 6.4-liter V-8 and the Hellcat's supercharged 6.2-liter V-8. For comparison, the 2015 Challenger starts at $27,990 with destination and tops out at $60,990 for the Hellcat, the 2014 Chrysler 300 starts between $32,390 and $50,926 for the SRT8 version, and fellow full-size sedan the 2014 Chevrolet Impala starts between $27,670 and $36,715 for the top LTZ style.

By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2011-2014 Chrysler Sedans; Dodge Sedans and SUVs, Jeep SUVs

2014Chrysler300Recall

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 435,000 model-year 2011-14 Chrysler 300 sedans, Dodge Charger and Challenger sedans, and Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs, all manufactured between June 17, 2010, and Dec. 23, 2013, and equipped with a 3.6-liter engine and a 160-amp alternator

The Problem: The alternator may suddenly fail, causing the vehicle to stall without warning and increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Chrysler will begin notifying owners on Nov. 28, and dealers will make the necessary repairs for free. The automaker said the remedy is still being determined.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Chrysler at 800-853-1403, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 16, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2014 Dodge Durango, Jeep Grand Cherokee

2014DodgeDurangoRecall

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 127,000 model-year 2014 Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs

The Problem: The occupant restraint control system may exhibit an internal short circuit; this could cause airbag warning lamps to illuminate, a signal that supplemental restraint systems such as airbags and seat belt pretensioners may be disabled. Chrysler said it is unaware of any accidents or injuries resulting from the issue.

The Fix: Chrysler will notify owners and advise them when they can schedule service. Dealers will replace the occupant restraint control system for free. In the interim, the automaker advises owners to be sure to use their seat belts. Chrysler has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call the automaker at 800-853-1403 for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 14, 2014 | Comments (0)

Top 10 Features for Showoffs

Show-Offs

Prefacing any great show-off moment is the phrase, "Hey, watch this." That's what Cars.com editors imagined when picking the greatest show-off features in new cars. What's surprising is the sheer number of over-the-top features surely wild enough to impress even the most non-interested parties. Want to set off car alarms in a parking garage or attract the attention of everyone who sets eyes on your car up to a mile away? This list has what it takes to be the center of attention.

By Joe Bruzek | October 13, 2014 | Comments (3)

2014 Dodge Journey Crossroad Real-World Cargo Space

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The 2014 Dodge Journey is an SUV that dabbles in a few segments thanks to its low entry price of $20,990 (including destination) undercutting many compact SUV prices and its midsize-SUV-like capability of hauling up to seven occupants with an optional third row of seating. The Journey's cargo space also straddles the line of compact to midsize with 10.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the optional third row, 39.6 cubic feet behind the second row and a maximum 67.6 cubic feet.

Related: 2014, 2015 Dodge Journey Crossroad Pros and Cons

The smallish 10.7 cubic feet behind the third row doesn't leave much room for a full load of groceries. In the Dodge family, you'll have to step up to the larger Durango for more cargo room behind the third row (17.2 cubic feet) or fold the Journey's third row flat for more cargo space. Plus, the Journey's tall cargo floor height didn't make loading heavy items very easy.

By Joe Bruzek | October 10, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014, 2015 Dodge Journey Crossroad Pros and Cons

Journey2

Let's just say it right away: There are many, many compact and midsize SUVs on the market that are likely better all-around choices than the Dodge Journey. Sometimes that's a hard truth to swallow, especially for Dodge. However, the SUV is an example of a vehicle that may be appealing enough to buyers that they send off their hard-earned money into an envelope each month to own one.

Related: 2015 Dodge Journey Crossroad Photo Gallery (24 Photos)

I talk to a lot of car shoppers, and they often come up with pro-and-con lists about the cars they're considering. The Journey is perhaps the perfect illustration of how even if a car isn't the best-in-class, the pros may still outweigh the cons.

By David Thomas | October 6, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2013-2014 Dodge SRT Viper

2014DodgeSRTViperRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 1,600 model-year 2013-14 Dodge SRT Viper supercars manufactured between Nov. 28, 2012, and June 26, 2014

The Problem: Due to inaccurate seat position sensors, the frontal airbags may deploy with a lower velocity than designed for the actual seat position. In a crash necessitating airbag deployment, an airbag that deploys at a lower velocity than designed increases the risk of an injury.

The Fix: Chrysler will begin notifying owners on Oct. 24, and dealers will install a metal shim on the detection plate to correct the seat position sensors' accuracy for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Chrysler at 800-853-1403 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 3, 2014 | Comments (0)

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