By Patrick Rall
Earlier today we brought you a look at the upcoming Fiat Ottimo – a hatchback version of the car that we know as the Dodge Dart. The Ottimo has been designed specifically for the Chinese market and although it could spread to other markets, it isnt likely to arrive in the US market for a variety of reasons. First, the Dodge Dart replaced the fairly infamous Dodge Caliber hatchback and when the Dart debuted, many Caliber haters hailed the end of the funky little 5-door. Also, the hatchback in generally is not looked upon as favorably in the US as it is on other markets so many vehicles offered as 5-door models abroad are never offered in that form in the US.
However, the steady growth in popularity of US-sold hatchback models that are compact, efficient and sporty slowly help to kill the anti-wagon stigma so there is a possibility that the Fiat Ottimo could be offered here some day as a Dodge Dart hatchback. There are a handful of competitive models with the Dart that are offered in a 5-door design including the Ford Focus, the VW Jetta, the Mazda 3 and there will eventually be a Chevy Cruze hatchback sold here. Should we see continued growth from those models as the segment grows, there is a slim chance that there could be a Dart hatchback.
Should that be the case, would you be more inclined to buy the Dart as a hatchback than you would as a sedan?