2012 Dodge Caliber

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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2012 Dodge Caliber. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Combined MPG:
    25-28 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    158-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain:
    Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission:
    5-speed manual w/OD
  • View more specs

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Quiet cabin
  • Optional Boston Acoustics stereo with flip-down liftgate speakers
  • Decent ride

The Bad

  • Marginal score in IIHS side-impact crash test
  • Rear visibility

Notable Features of the 2012 Dodge Caliber

  • Simplified model lineup for 2012
  • Manual or CVT
  • Available navigation radio
  • Available 18-inch wheels

2012 Dodge Caliber Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

The Caliber is a five-seat, four-door hatchback. It's offered in three trim levels for 2012: SE, SXT and SXT Plus. Competitors include the Mazda3 hatchback and Toyota Matrix.

New for 2012
A simplified model lineup features SE, SXT and SXT Plus trim levels, and an electronic stability system is now standard. The Caliber's available continuously variable automatic transmission has been recalibrated to deliver better launch acceleration, smoother deceleration, improved pedal response and lower engine noise, Dodge says.

Exterior
The Caliber is clearly a Dodge, thanks in part to its crosshair grille. A black rail that runs from the base of the A-pillars and along the roofline to the taillights tricks the eye into seeing a lower, sleeker shape. Despite the look, the Caliber actually sits a bit higher than most compact cars. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch steel wheels with silver-painted wheel covers
  • Available 17- or 18-inch aluminum wheels
  • Body-colored front and rear bumpers, optional body-colored door handles
  • Optional power sunroof

Interior
Front bucket seats and a split-folding backseat give the Caliber seating for up to five people. Interior features include:

  • Standard illuminated cupholder rings
  • Standard cloth seats
  • Standard power windows, mirrors and locks
  • Standard Chill Zone beverage-cooling bin
  • Standard CD stereo with MP3 jack
  • Optional fold-flat front passenger seat
  • Optional navigation radio
  • Optional rechargeable flashlight that stow...
Vehicle Overview

The Caliber is a five-seat, four-door hatchback. It's offered in three trim levels for 2012: SE, SXT and SXT Plus. Competitors include the Mazda3 hatchback and Toyota Matrix.

New for 2012
A simplified model lineup features SE, SXT and SXT Plus trim levels, and an electronic stability system is now standard. The Caliber's available continuously variable automatic transmission has been recalibrated to deliver better launch acceleration, smoother deceleration, improved pedal response and lower engine noise, Dodge says.

Exterior
The Caliber is clearly a Dodge, thanks in part to its crosshair grille. A black rail that runs from the base of the A-pillars and along the roofline to the taillights tricks the eye into seeing a lower, sleeker shape. Despite the look, the Caliber actually sits a bit higher than most compact cars. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch steel wheels with silver-painted wheel covers
  • Available 17- or 18-inch aluminum wheels
  • Body-colored front and rear bumpers, optional body-colored door handles
  • Optional power sunroof

Interior
Front bucket seats and a split-folding backseat give the Caliber seating for up to five people. Interior features include:

  • Standard illuminated cupholder rings
  • Standard cloth seats
  • Standard power windows, mirrors and locks
  • Standard Chill Zone beverage-cooling bin
  • Standard CD stereo with MP3 jack
  • Optional fold-flat front passenger seat
  • Optional navigation radio
  • Optional rechargeable flashlight that stows in cargo area
  • Optional Boston Acoustics premium stereo with flip-down liftgate speakers

Under the Hood
The Caliber comes standard with a 158-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. It teams with a five-speed manual or a CVT. Front disc and rear drum brakes are standard, but all-disc brakes are optional. Mechanical features include:

  • 158-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 141 pounds-feet of torque
  • Engine runs on regular gas
  • Optional clutchless-manual feature for CVT

Safety
The Caliber comes with a unique-for-its-class standard driver's knee airbag designed to keep the driver positioned properly for the other primary restraints. Other standard safety features include:

  • Antilock brakes
  • Electronic stability system
  • Side curtain airbags
  • Smart key engine immobilizer
  • Active front head restraints

 


Latest 2012 Caliber Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.3)
Performance
(3.6)
Interior Design
(3.9)
Comfort
(4.0)
Reliability
(4.5)
Value For The Money
(4.2)

What Drivers Are Saying

(3.0)

Good for me.

by LillianScammedByIndependenceMazda from Ocean Springs on August 22, 2018

I like the car... it is comfortable and cute. But doe have a really small trunk space and not a whole lot of power. Great sound system and really comfortable seats! Read full review

(1.0)

Most awful vehicle I?ve ever owned

by Sara from Victoria, Texas on August 13, 2018

I am a single mom of 4 children and I bought this car for our family transportation. It?s been a nightmare from the day I got it. Major mechanical issues, hydroplanes no matter the amount of water on ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2012 Dodge Caliber currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2012 Dodge Caliber has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 100,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    36 months / 36,000 miles

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by Dodge

Program Benefits

24-hour roadside assistance, Carfax vehicle history report, rental car and 24-hour towing, and first day rental

  • Limited Warranty

    7 years / 100,000 miles

    7 years/100,000 mile warranty on all certified vehicles
  • Eligibility

    Under 5 years / 75,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a 125 point inspection and reconditioning.

    See inspection details.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Caliber received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker