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2004 Dodge Neon

  • 2004 Dodge Neon R/T Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      36
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      150/135
    • ENGINE
      2.0L I4
    • MSRP
      $17,640
  • 2004 Dodge Neon SE Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      36
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      132/130
    • ENGINE
      2.0L I4
    • MSRP
      $13,490
  • 2004 Dodge Neon SXT Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      36
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      132/130
    • ENGINE
      2.0L I4
    • MSRP
      $15,800
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2004 Dodge Neon Review

Not exactly a polished economy vehicle, but it does have impressive handling and a commanding audio system.

Reviewed by Automotive on

Overview

Dodge introduced the Neon as an affordable compact car. It is a front-wheel-drive car that is available as either a sedan or coupe, depending on the year. The compact car market is extremely competitive, and Japanese manufacturers have a reputation for building quality cars that are highly reliable. In an effort to produce something different, Dodge made its 2004 Neon fun to drive: its suspension and steering are tuned to handle corners well, and, with a choice of two engines, it can pack a powerful punch for its size.

This strategy worked, and the 2004 Dodge Neon became a fast favorite with younger drivers. It was popular for its smooth ride, spacious interior, and exciting drivability. However, it is known for having weak engines, suffering from excessive road and wind noise, and generally being less refined than other economy cars.

The Range

Body Styles: sedan
Engines: 2.0-liter V-6, 2.4-liter V-6
Transmissions: four-speed automatic, five-speed manual
Models: Dodge Neon SE, Dodge Neon SXT, Dodge R/T, Dodge Neon SRT-4

What's New

The Dodge Neon underwent a facelift in 2003, so the only change for the 2004 model year is the introduction of a few new colors of paint.

Exterior

The 2004 Dodge Neon SE comes standard with 14-inch steel wheels, whereas the SXT is fitted with 15-inch alloy wheels. The R/T models come with a dual outlet exhaust, sport suspension, 16-inch alloy wheels, fog lamps, a rear spoiler, and four-wheel disc brakes. The SRT-4 comes with 17-inch alloy wheels and performance tires. Optional extras for the SXT and R/T include a power sunroof, while the SRT-4 and the R/T have the option of leather seating.

Interior

The 2004 Dodge Neon SE comes with a cassette player, a tilt-adjustable steering wheel, and a rear split-fold seat. A CD-player and air-conditioning are optional features. The next trim level up, the SXT, includes power front windows, power locks, power mirrors, air-conditioning, and a CD player. The R/T and SRT-4 models have all of the aforementioned features, as well as upgraded instrumentation and in-car entertainment additions. The cabin is typical for a small compact sedan, seating four passengers comfortably. The front seats are bucket-style, and the upholstery choices are between premium cloth and optional leather.

Performance & Handling

The 2004 Dodge Neon is available in four different trim levels, all of which are four-door sedans. The trim levels are the base SE, the SXT, the R/T, and the SRT-4. The SE and SXT models are powered by a 2.0-liter, 132-horsepower (hp) engine, while the sportier R/T model has the same engine but with a higher output, capable of producing 150 hp. The SRT-4 has an even more powerful, turbocharged, 2.4-liter engine, capable of producing 215 hp. This engine can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in about six seconds, and has a top speed of 140-mph. Models come with either an automatic four-speed transmission or a manual five-speed transmission. This generation is a lot smoother and quieter than earlier models, but it's still not a particularly polished or refined car.

Safety

The 2004 Dodge Neon base and SXT models have the option of anti-lock brakes, which are standard on the R/T and SRT-4 trim levels. Side airbags are an optional feature for all models. The Neon performed reasonably well in government crash tests, achieving four stars out of a possible five for frontal-impact tests. However, for side-impact tests, it achieved an unimpressive three-star rating. It scored very poorly for offset-frontal crash tests, achieving a marginal rating, which is the equivalent of two stars.

EPA Fuel Economy

Dodge Neon SE: 25/32 mpg city/highway
Dodge Neon SXT: 19/28 mpg city/highway
Dodge Neon R/T: 19/28 mpg city/highway
Dodge Neon SRT-4: 19/28 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Fun driving on curves
  • Sound system rocks
  • Strong brakes
  • Comfortable ride

You Won't Like

  • Low-grade interior apparatus
  • Lacking in refinement

Sum Up

Not exactly a polished economy vehicle, but it does have impressive handling and a commanding audio system.

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