The Dodge Avenger shores up Chrysler's midsize sedan lineup. The Avenger succeeds the Stratus and plays a sportier second fiddle to Chrysler's Sebring sedan. Trim levels include the SE, the midlevel SXT and the sporty R/T. The midsize sedan market is populated with dozens of able competitors; comparable Avenger sedans include the Kia Optima and Ford Fusion.
New for 2009
The 2009 Avenger has a reengineered acoustic dampening system that's designed to reduce cabin noise levels. All-wheel drive is no longer available.
The Avenger sports a racer-boy look, complementing the Sebring's styling. The rear end looks much like the one on the full-size Charger, and the side profile draws elements from the compact Caliber. Up front, the Avenger SE includes a black grille, while the SXT and R/T have a chrome crosshair grille.
At 190.9 inches long and 71.8 inches wide, the Avenger is about the same size as the Fusion and both longer and slightly wider than the Optima.
- Body-colored handles, grille, and front and rear body parts
- Optional body-colored side mirrors and chrome grille
- Optional rear spoiler
- 16-inch steel wheels with full covers (SE), 17-inch aluminum wheels (SXT) and 18-inch chrome-clad wheels (R/T)
Inside, the cabin trades the Sebring's metallic textures for varied shades of plastic. A 60/40-split folding rear seat accommodates longer items from the trunk. For even more-oversized cargo, a fold-flat passenger seat is standard (SXT, R/T). With 100 cubic feet of cabin volume, the Avenger slightly trails the Optima (104) and is about even with the Fusion (100).
The 2009 Avenger gets a dark gray interior option, replacing the light gray interior.
- Standard cabin air-filtration system
- Standard power windows, locks and mirrors
- Standard floormats and trunk mat
- Standard in-dash 12-ounce can cooler
- Available stain-resistant seat fabric
- Heated seats and heated/cooled cupholders
Under the Hood
The Avenger is available with three different engines: a four-cylinder, a V-6 and an E85-capable V-6. All-wheel drive is no longer available.
- 173-horsepower, 2.4-liter four-cylinder with 166 pounds-feet of torque (SE, SXT)
- Flex-fuel 186-hp, 2.7-liter V-6 with 191 pounds-feet of torque (optional in SXT)
- 235-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 with 232 pounds-feet of torque (R/T)
- Four (SE, SXT) and six-speed automatic transmissions (R/T)
Safety features include:
- Standard front-seat-mounted side airbags
- Standard side curtain airbags
- Accident Response System that turns on interior lights, unlocks doors and cuts fuel to the engine after airbags deploy
- Electronic stability and traction control (optional on SXT & standard on R/T)
- Antilock braking system (standard on SXT and R/T)