It all starts with lineup simplification.
Earlier this year we learned that time is limited for both the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart. In other words, Fiat Chrysler won’t replace either of them after their current lifecycles in order to shift its focus from passenger cars to trucks and SUVs. So it goes. And now we’re seeing the first sign of FCA phasing out the Dart, which only launched in 2012. The automaker has just announced that it’s simplifying the 2016 Dart lineup by reducing it to three trims: SXT Sport, Turbo and GT Sport.
“We are repositioning the Dart lineup to better align production and dealer inventory with consumer demand and preference,” stated Tim Kuniskis, FCA’s head of passenger cars for North America. Whenever an automaker uses the word “repositioning” in regards to any model, its end often is near. The cheapest Dart, the SXT Sport, will carry a base price of $17,995, and is powered by the 2.0-liter Tigershark four. The most expensive trim, the GT Sport, actually has a $1,000 price decrease from last year, now starting at $20,995. So there’s that. And, for what it’s worth, the Rallye and Blacktop packages are still offered as well as a new Chrome pack. We wouldn’t be surprised if 2016 actually turns out to be the Dart’s last production year.