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2009 Dodge Caliber

  • 2009 Dodge Caliber R/T Wagon
    • MAX MPG
      29
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      172/165
    • ENGINE
      2.4L I4
    • MSRP
      $20,295
  • 2009 Dodge Caliber SE Wagon
    • MAX MPG
      29
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      148/125
    • ENGINE
      1.8L I4
    • MSRP
      $16,460
  • 2009 Dodge Caliber SRT4 Wagon
    • MAX MPG
      25
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      285/265
    • ENGINE
      2.4L I4
    • MSRP
      $24,840
  • 2009 Dodge Caliber SXT Wagon
    • MAX MPG
      29
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      148/125
    • ENGINE
      1.8L I4
    • MSRP
      $17,850
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2009 Dodge Caliber Review

Suffers from performance that fails to inspire and a cabin that utilizes low-quality materials.

Reviewed by Automotive on

Overview

The 2009 Dodge Caliber appeared as a replacement for the Neon a few years ago. It is the most economical and fuel-efficient vehicle in the Dodge lineup. Its body style is a four-door hatchback, which provides easy access to the cargo area. In addition, it has some unique features that are not present on most small cars. Some of those features include lift gate-mounted speakers that have the ability to flip down for outdoor music entertainment. Just as unique is the chilled glove box for keeping beverages cold. An available feature is a navigation and audio system that stores digital music. The hatchback, combined with the ability to lower the rear seat, makes accomplishing daily tasks a breeze. In case of spills, the rear part of the cargo space is constructed from plastic, which can be easily cleaned. Included in the unique features is the hard drive based audio and navigation system, which also boasts a touchscreen, USB port, and a 30 GB hard drive capable of storing hours of music. Additionally, the navigation system adds voice activated GPS capabilities, options that are rarely seen in compact cars.

The Range

Body Styles: hatchback
Engines: 2.0-liter four-cylinder, 2.4-liter four-cylinder, 1.8-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: six-speed manual, two-speed CVT, five-speed manual, two-speed CVT
Models: Dodge Caliber SE, Dodge Caliber SXT, Dodge Caliber R/T, Dodge Caliber SRT4

What's New

The 2009 Dodge Caliber features a prominent crosshair grille and wheels that are very large for a model in its class. It boasts a low, sleek profile, despite the fact that it’s actually a bit higher than many compact models. The SXT trim is a midgrade trim that comes standard with 17-inch wheels. Optional features include a sunroof. The R/T trim comes with the standard options of 18-inch alloy wheels. Optional features include chrome plate wheels. The SRT4, a high-performance trim level, comes standard a sporty and unique hood with a functional air scoop and an aggressive appearance. Also standard are 19-inch wheels.

Exterior

The 2009 Dodge Caliber features a prominent crosshair grille and wheels that are very large for a model in its class. It boasts a low, sleek profile, despite the fact that it’s actually a bit higher than many compact models. The SXT trim is a midgrade trim that comes standard with 17-inch wheels. Optional features include a sunroof. The R/T trim comes with the standard options of 18-inch alloy wheels. Optional features include chrome plate wheels. The SRT4, a high-performance trim level, comes standard a sporty and unique hood with a functional air scoop and an aggressive appearance. Also standard are 19-inch wheels.

Interior

The 2009 Dodge Caliber's interior makes use of good quality materials and features a two-tone color scheme. Interior features include illuminated cup holder rings, an available cooled-beverage bin, and an optional voice-activated navigation and/or audio system. The SE trim is a budget-priced trim with minimal standard accessories like a CD stereo with an input jack. Features such as air-conditioning, power windows, and power mirrors are options that can be added. The SRT4 comes standard with the hard drive music system with a 13-speaker Kicker audio system.

Performance & Handling

The 2009 Dodge Caliber is sometimes said to be lacking in the get up and go area, but that is the trade-off for great fuel efficiency. Unfortunately, even for a hatchback with an entry-level price, it provides a disappointing driving experience. Acceleration is poor despite ride quality being smooth overall. The SE comes standard with a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine at 148 horsepower with an option to upgrade to a 2.0-liter engine. The SXT also comes standard with a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine at 148 horsepower with the option to upgrade to a 2.0-liter that produces 158 horsepower. The R/T comes with a 2.4-liter engine, making 172 horsepower. The SRT4 is a front drive and boasts a 2.4-liter, turbo engine good for 285 horsepower.

Safety

The 2009 Dodge Caliber offers head-protecting side curtain airbags are standard as is a knee-blocker airbag for the driver. Stability control is standard on the three uppermost trims. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awarded a perfect five star rating for both front and side impact tests. A ""good"" rating from the Insurance for Highway Safety was awarded for the frontal offset crash test.

EPA Fuel Economy

Dodge Caliber: 24/30 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Interior versatility
  • Wide selection of engine choices

You Won't Like

  • Acceleration on CVT-equipped models is sluggish
  • Interior uses low-grade materials
  • Build quality is unimpressive

Sum Up

Suffers from performance that fails to inspire and a cabin that utilizes low-quality materials.

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2009 Dodge Caliber Consumer Rating

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