2013 Dodge Dart Earns 40 MPG Combined; Fiat Earns Controlling Stake in Chrysler

By Trevor Dorchies | January 05, 2012
When Chrysler entered its Operation Agreement with the U.S. Department of the Treasury back in 2009 the Detroit auto maker made a few promises. One of them, and perhaps the one that carries the most weight, was the commitment to producing a vehicle in the United States with an unadjusted combined fuel economy of at least 40 mpg. While it sounds like a tough task it's not impossible; just check the mileage figures for the Toyota Prius and Honda Civic hybrid. Fast forward two years later to the 2013 Dodge Dart, and Chrysler's proved it can do the deed as it projects the new compact will earn 40 mpg combined. The Dart brings with it Fiat S.p.A's final five percent of ownership interest in Chrysler bumping it up to a controlling stake of 58.5 percent. With the addition of the Dart, Fiat now has a controlling interest in Chrysler, leaving the United Auto Workers Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association with the remaining 41.5 percent. A pre-production version of the 2013 Dodge Dart was tested late last month and achieved the Fuel Economy Test earning an unadjusted 40 mpg combined.  Automakers test their vehicles by using a dynamometer-a machine that measures force, torque, or power-while a professional driver simulates normal city and highway driving.  An unadjusted mpg rating is calculated by connecting a hose to the vehicle's tailpipe and measuring carbon in the exhaust gases. Estimated numbers are calculated as 90 percent of the unadjusted city driving while 78 percent is calculated of unadjusted highway mpg. This along with idea driving conditions translates into actual mpg's reach the unadjusted mpg rating.
This is the fifth time in the past 13 months Fiat has increased its ownership stake in Chrysler Group. It all began back in June of 2009 when Fiat acquired 20 percent in the Detroit auto maker and then in January of 2011 the Italian auto maker increased its stake another five percent. On April 12 of last year Fiat's ownership responsibilities crept up to 30 percent before the Italian auto maker forked over a cool $500 million in order to take over the U.S. Treasury's six percent ownership interest. Fiat also doled out another $125 million to soak up the Canadian government's 1.5 percent stake in Chrysler. After purchasing all the loose pieces of Chrysler Fiat's ownership stake climbed to 53.5 percent. With the recent addition of the 2013 Dodge Dart and its ability to achieve an unadjusted 40 mpg, Fiat receives another five percent from the U.S. government as part of the accord reach back in the summer of 2009. Source: Dodge