Dodge announced partial EPA fuel-economy estimates for its 2013 Dart and revealed that a fuel economy-focused version of the compact sedan will get at least 41 mpg on the highway when equipped with a manual transmission and the available turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder. This Aero package, as Dodge calls it, will be available in the third quarter of 2012 after the car's spring debut. Pricing for the package hasn't been announced, but it includes aerodynamic changes and low-rolling-resistance tires.
Without the Aero package, the manual-transmission, turbocharged four-cylinder Dart gets an EPA-estimated 27/39 mpg city/highway, while the base 2.0-liter engine is rated at 25/36 mpg with a manual. As of this writing, gas mileage estimates for the available 2.4-liter four-cylinder and automatic-transmission models haven't been released.
The Dart Aero joins a segment populated with specialty high-mileage cars. Chevrolet and Ford offer versions of their compact cars designed to eke out better highway mileage with the Cruze Eco (42 mpg) and Focus SFE (40 mpg), respectively. Hyundai, meanwhile, takes a different approach: All versions of the Elantra are rated at 40 mpg on the highway.