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2007 Dodge Nitro Photo
Reviewed by Richard Yarrow
Editor, The Car Connection
BASE INVOICE
$18,179
BASE MSRP
$19,350
Quick Take
SLIDESHOW: Butch styling, decked-out interior. Handling could use another turn of the ratchet... Read more »
N/A out of 10
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 Butch styling, decked-out interior.

Slow icon

Slow icon

 Handling could use another turn of the ratchet. 

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 Growling engines don't put out enough thrust.

 

The new Dodge Nitro is only the latest work of a company famous for producing 4x4s, but it will still take its place in the firm’s history books. It’s the firm’s first ever mid-size SUV, and the first Dodge SUV of any size destined for beyond the borders of theUSA and Canada.

 

It’s not entirely a clean-sheet design, but a distant relative of the current Jeep Liberty. However the Nitro has grown in some essential ways — it’s longer than the current Liberty, for example — in which the new Liberty will also grow when it’s revamped after the 2007 model year. The next Liberty will get a low-range ratio and a tougher suspension befitting its badge, but this Nitro is designed more for the on-road SUV crowd.

 

The Nitro goes on sale in the U.S. later this year. As the Liberty is, the Nitro is aimed at domestic offerings such as the Ford Escape, Kia Sorento, and Hyundai Santa Fe.

 

Looks about right

 

Three models make up the range. The SXT is the base vehicle and comes with a six-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission and a 210-hp V-6. The SLT adds trim but only comes with the four-speed automatic. Rear-drive is standard, while four-wheel drive is optional on these. The higher-performance R/T gets a 260-hp V-6 and a five-speed automatic, as well as standard four-wheel drive.
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