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Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

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Old 12-03-2007, 11:28 PM
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Default Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Autoblog Q&A: Erich Heuschele from SRT answers why the Caliber SRT-4 is FWD
Posted Nov 29th 2007 5:01PM by Sam Abuelsamid of AutoBlog.com

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While the new Dodge Caliber SRT-4 was in the Autoblog Garage, I had a chat with Erich Heushele and Kathy Graham from Chrysler. Erich is the Vehicle Development Supervisor at Chrysler's in-house tuning group and Kathy is a communications rep for the team. We talked about some of the mechanical changes involved in transforming a Caliber into an SRT-4, including why it doesn't have all-wheel-drive.

Autoblog: I just have a few questions about some of the things that your team did on the SRT-4 that differ from the standard Caliber. What sort of suspension and brake changes were made? Also, why is there no all-wheel-drive?

Erich Heuschele: Sure, well I will try to see what I can give you. We dropped the front end 28-mm and the rear 22-mm. We actually have shorter dampers on the car so it has more jounce travel. We didn't just lower the car. We actually got back some of the jounce travel we lost. It has 210-pound per inch springs in the front, 240 in the rear. That's pretty stiff, and on car like the Caliber and the Patriot, they like stiff springs. The base Caliber is more like a 160 pounds per inch and the old SRT-4 Neon was 175 in the front and 125 in the back. We've got 19 by 7 ½ inch cast wheels, 225/45-19 tires. The Goodyear Eagle RS-A or the F1. The RS-A is actually a really kick *** RSA, it's nearly as capable as the F1 tire.

EH: We did extensive tuning on those things. So you are not really giving up much performance with the four-season tire. The brake system is using the 5.7L Charger cop car calipers. It is actually the export 300C 5.7L pads and the cop car brake pads will go on. You could buy those from Mopar. Those are a little more track capable.

And then the rear brake is essentially a Sebring rear disc set up. We've got a unique master cylinder. It's quite large, and we have got pretty damn stiff calipers and I think a pretty good pedal feel out of that thing. I think especially for a slider (floating calipers), I think that is the benchmark brake system.

AB: Yeah the pedal feels a lot firmer than the standard Caliber that I drove before.

EH: Yes, that is totally a different animal. It has got a much bigger master cylinder to push the fluid volume because we've got twin pistons on the front. We have a unique ABS tuning, unique ESP tuning for the vehicle, but suspension wise we maintain the Caliber R/T 24-mm front sway bar. We bump the rear sway bar from a 15 to an 18 mm.

AB: The SRT-4 only has front-wheel drive versus the all-wheel drive that is available on the R/T. What was the reasoning there?

EH: Well, the all-wheel R/T system is really a reactive system that isn't capable of putting anywhere near the torque that we would want to put on the back of the SRT-4. (This statement got a little jumbled in the transcription process.)

So, we would have had to develop a whole new system, which was quite prohibitive and the feeling was that if we had started from scratch with an all-wheel drive performance system in order to compete with the Evo and the WRX STI, we couldn't offer the vehicle at the kind of price point that we wanted to offer.

AB: The R/T all-wheel drive, is that a viscous coupled or electronic clutch?

EH: They have a clutch, but a clutch off the PTU but it doesn't have the torque capacity in the lower gears that we want. And we wanted to be able to run torque capacity especially at time when it is low MU-type system, where okay, if you put a lot of torque to it on the front wheels and it spins up and then we send some torque to back and then as soon as you have traction you're front-wheel drive again. We didn't want to do something like that. We want to run 60 or 70% of the torques to the back tires.

AB: Right, that makes sense.

EH: A real performance system.

AB: You said you did some specific tuning on the stability control for this vehicle for the tires and suspension and the other changes. Were there any other hardware changes that were done on SRT-4?

EH: Let's see. Well, you know we have got a unique full 3-inch exhaust system. I mean if you want to get started in the engine stuff. But, chassis wise we've got, yes, it is definitely a completely unique ABS/ESP tune for the vehicle. And we pushed the limits quite a ways out there compared to a base car. In other words, if you drive through the slalom smoothly, as fast as the car will go, we were 68 ½ mph through the slalom. You will not get ESP intervention.

AB: Yeah, I noticed it seemed to be pretty hard to get it to kick in and I just tried a couple of maneuvers on the road, just a couple of lane change type of maneuvers and it didn't seem to kick in. When I did get it to kick in on a slippery road, it was much smoother than some of the other systems that I have tried on other vehicles recently.

EH: Well, thanks. We do a lot of development work on it and SRTs, I think, generally performance drivers don't like the ESP controlling what they are doing so we try and push it out as far as we can and still catch the car.

Kathy Graham: And that is what I was going to say, Sam, is for that SRT customer, it's a unique customer from the base Caliber. They are looking for different things when they drive the car than the average driver and as Eric said better than I can but that's why we do those things with SRT.

AB: I just have one last question about the engine. You are not using direct fuel injection on there are you?

EH: No, it's not a direct injection. It is multi-port.

AB: Are there any plans in the future if you can talk about it to go to a DI system on there?

EH: We can't talk that. Kathy is shaking her head.

KG: We'd have to kill you Sam!

AB: That's what I figured the answer would be, but I had to ask anyway.

KG: We always are looking at different things. But until we announce something, we cannot talk about it. We look at all technologies all the time and would evaluate it based on what makes sense for the vehicle, for the customer and for the business case.

AB: Sure, I understand that.

KG: Sorry.

AB: Well thanks for answering the other questions.[/align]
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Old 12-03-2007, 11:30 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

"because they dont want their cars to reach their full potential" should have been what he said.

i like the new srt4, but it should have been awd...there is no excuse for it not being awd. cost, design problems, all nonsense...find a way to compete with the evo and the sti...along with endless other vehicles.the AWD cars dominate the sport compact world.
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Old 12-03-2007, 11:40 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Aaaaaaagggggrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeedddddd.....
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Old 12-04-2007, 12:04 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

lets review the cars that dominate the sport compact world..

the evo...awd, 4 door.
the sti...awd, 4 door.
the skyline (not really a compact, but every ricers dream car, so the mags always cover them)...awd, 2 door.
the record 4 cylinder car at nopi...a RWD DSM.
the record street tire car at nopi...AWD talon.
the supra (again, not a compact, but like the skyline) rwd, 2 door


i know that the srt4 is fast, and while the *** car ran 7s, ive never seen an srt4 in person run better than 10s, but ive seen evos DRIVE into the track and run 9s (the AMS car)...and curt brown got his into the 10s with the stock turbo...i saw him right after he got it in the low 11s, without getting into motor work.

the mopar engineers must not have owned tricycles, so they didnt learn at an early age that FWD sucks.
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Old 12-04-2007, 12:46 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

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"because they dont want their cars to reach their full potential" should have been what he said.

i like the new srt4, but it should have been awd...there is no excuse for it not being awd. cost, design problems, all nonsense...find a way to compete with the evo and the sti...along with endless other vehicles.the AWD cars dominate the sport compact world.
Agreed. I mean, would it have been that difficult to work out some kind of deal with, say, Mitsubishi, and use a "stripped" version of some previous generation EVO all-wheel drive system (like the Mitsu AWC for example)?
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Old 12-04-2007, 02:18 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

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ORIGINAL: BadStratRT

"because they dont want their cars to reach their full potential" should have been what he said.

i like the new srt4, but it should have been awd...there is no excuse for it not being awd. cost, design problems, all nonsense...find a way to compete with the evo and the sti...along with endless other vehicles.the AWD cars dominate the sport compact world.
Although I am a FWD fan, AWD is the only way to go with this class. His excuse is lame. The reason is it could cannabalize the sales of the other SRT models is the real reason I'm sure. Dumb idea. If they beginning to take sales away from the other SRTs, then update the others to where it is so much better that they will except nothing less than the larger SRTs. They would gain more by being able to compete against the evo in terms of brand image than what they could possibly lose by doing this right in Chargerand Challenger SRT sales (which I don't think a turbo I4 is going to affect that much as I wouldn't consider a Caliber for one single minuet no matter how reasonable).

Also, so what if the AWD system isn't asgood as the others?A little less even is better than nothing atall.
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Old 12-04-2007, 06:09 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

it would be great to get Erich Heushele away from Kathy Graham
and ask him a series of questions
about the differences and improvements
in the SRT designed 6.1 Hemi V8
vs
the standard and coming models of the 5.7 V8

I would also bet
that Erich & his co-workers could lay out what MPG improvments could be done
to give 'real' MPG gains in the various Dodge models.

Especially valuable would be info
on simple ways to reduce the aerodynamic drag of each Dodge model.
It is almost impossible to know the 'aero tricks' without a wind tunnel
but once known, most of those aero tricks can be done surprisingly cheaply.
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Old 12-04-2007, 07:33 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Just another line of excuses and b.s. from Dodge...... I completely agree with what BadStrat, 03NeonRT, and 97 3.5 Intrepid said..

If this was all they could come up with, almost 2 years AFTER the release of the Caliber......I'll pass on it..
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Old 12-04-2007, 08:04 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Ok, while I do agree that I would like to see a AWD Caliber SRT-4, I also see that you've all missed the fact thatDodge,(and GM and Ford),is working their way toward the AWD/RWD sport compact segment. They didn't even have an AWD offering in their car lineup (minivan excluded) until a year or two ago, and now its available on, I think, every car they sell. (Yes, I know there was the Stealth R/T with AWD, but it's been gone for a long time, and it exceeded that 'affordable' price point that i'll get to in a minute.) And you keep comparing the SRT-4 to the Evo and STi, which as far as I know have ALWAYS been AWD. The Evo and Sti drivetrains have been developed and improved over the past how many years, and you expect them to just come up with a performance- and cost-competitiveAWD system over night?Come on, be realistic.

Dodge has also been showing alot of RWD and some AWD concept cars the past few years. I need to mention here that I REALLY hope they produce that Demon concept, ecspecially for the supposed 15K base price point. Also note that the other two American Car Manufacturers have no AWD sport models.And, while F*** (excuse my language there) does have a RWD so-called affordable sports car, aka: the Mustang, GM only just came out with the RWD Solstice/Sky. And GM's only other affordable sporty car, the Cobalt SS, doesn't even offer AWD on a non-SS model like the Caliber does on a non-SRT model. Oh, and by the way, when I say affordable I'm thinking around $30k, $35K MAXimum, for a current model year. And that's still more car than I could ever afford. I only mention this it response to your mention of the Skyline and Supra. You can't justify comparing a $20K-$30K to a $40K+ car, the upcoming GT-R that is supposed to start at about $70K.

And now I have to bring up something that has been pissing me off for a while now. Ford has their ads about the AWD Fusion, which is not a sports car, but more of a comparison to a Subaru Legacy. They say that in a consumer comparison test of some sort that it beats out the Camry and Accord in performance and the fun-to-drive factor. Well considering that the Camry and Accord are both FWD it damn well better! After all, isn't that what this discussion has been all about: AWD/RWD is better than FWD.

In closing, all I'm saying is be patient. American car manufacturers have always been behind the Japanese, andwe will eventually get to where they already are. I am a loyal Dodge owner, and I'll wait for them to build an equivalent to an Evo or STi before I buy a Mitsubishi or any new ugly Subaru.

Oh, and if you have a different opinion, I really don't care what you think, but if I've stated something as fact and I'm mistaken, please do correct me.
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Old 12-04-2007, 09:16 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

you wouldnt buy a mitsu? are you familiar with GEMA? before the SRT models, some of the fastest chrysler vehicles made since the muscle car era ended were made by mitsubishi, for dodge...sadly, dodge hasnt built many cars in the last 30 years that would outrun the mitsubishi built plymouth laser, eagle talon, or especially thedodge stealth rt/tt...

maybe mitsubishi should start making more vehicles for dodge.
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Old 12-04-2007, 09:42 AM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Yes, I'm aware of Dodges past involvement with Mitsubishi, and I'll say that I do like the looks of the new Evo. But, like I said I'm a loyal Doge owner. My first car was a 1990 Dodge Colt. This car was built entirely by Mitsubishi I think, but Dodge sold it, it said Dodge on the back. I bought it used from my uncle, who had driven it across country a few times,in 1998 (maybe '99) for $1,000 with about 68,000 miles on the clock. I might even still have that car if I had not totalled it about 3 months after I got it. I probably wouldn't, but i might have, oh well.

Also, I said that the price of a new Evo is more than I can afford, and we've been talking about new car models, not used car shopping. Plus, I'm not in the market for a car now anyways. We got my wife a new '07 Caliber R/T last year, which we just love by the way, but had to finance $22K over 7 YEARS to be able to afford the payments; and I just got my '00 Club Cab Dakota in August for $6,000 (book was about $7600, mileage included)with 191,000 miles on it, and it runs great.

The only time I've ever had a problem with a vehicle, and all I've ever had has been Dodge, has been when I've neglected regular maintenance, and so that was my bad, not Dodge's fault.
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Old 12-04-2007, 12:10 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Simple fact is NO ONE will buy a 30K calibar. Dodge did the right thing. This car is made to compete with the civic Si and Scon tc segmentsand it will dominate. Putting the Calibar in the WRX and EVO segment would have been the SRT-4's death sentance.WRX and EVO's have years of racing AWD and you want Dodge to create one in a few months that would be able to compete, come on it's not going to happen. For a Dodge forum, it's seems all people do is bash everthing Dodge does.
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Old 12-04-2007, 01:06 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

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Simple fact is NO ONE will buy a 30K calibar. Dodge did the right thing. This car is made to compete with the civic Si and Scon tc segmentsand it will dominate. Putting the Calibar in the WRX and EVO segment would have been the SRT-4's death sentance.WRX and EVO's have years of racing AWD and you want Dodge to create one in a few months that would be able to compete, come on it's not going to happen. For a Dodge forum, it's seems all people do is bash everthing Dodge does.
Perhaps when Dodge actually starts listening to its customers rather then trashing great vehicles or building crap no one wants.....we'll all stop bashing them...

I will however agree with you that a 30k Caliber simply wouldnt have sold......there's no way to justify the cost to any customer...
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Old 12-04-2007, 03:00 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

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Yes, I'm aware of Dodges past involvement with Mitsubishi, and I'll say that I do like the looks of the new Evo. But, like I said I'm a loyal Doge owner. My first car was a 1990 Dodge Colt. This car was built entirely by Mitsubishi I think, but Dodge sold it, it said Dodge on the back. I bought it used from my uncle, who had driven it across country a few times,in 1998 (maybe '99) for $1,000 with about 68,000 miles on the clock. I might even still have that car if I had not totalled it about 3 months after I got it. I probably wouldn't, but i might have, oh well.

Also, I said that the price of a new Evo is more than I can afford, and we've been talking about new car models, not used car shopping. Plus, I'm not in the market for a car now anyways. We got my wife a new '07 Caliber R/T last year, which we just love by the way, but had to finance $22K over 7 YEARS to be able to afford the payments; and I just got my '00 Club Cab Dakota in August for $6,000 (book was about $7600, mileage included)with 191,000 miles on it, and it runs great.

The only time I've ever had a problem with a vehicle, and all I've ever had has been Dodge, has been when I've neglected regular maintenance, and so that was my bad, not Dodge's fault.
i wasnt trying to question your fanhood...or your choice of vehicles, but it seemed to me like you were bagging on mitsubishi, who has done nothing but good things for chrysler corporation over the years.

you guys are talking like the srt4 caliber is going to fly off the shelves, and i dont forsee it happening...considering its power output, its price, and the class of vehicle, it doesnt really fit into any class. a 24,000 dollar, compact 4-door station wagon, with 300hp...? the only way that it would fit into a class, is if the toyots matrix or pontiac vibe came out with a performance model...and guess what, it doesnt take much to climb the srt4 right up around 30,000 with tax and title...
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Old 12-04-2007, 03:06 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

30K Caliber? BS An AWD system should only add about $3,000 to the price tag. It would cost you $26,000.It would be cheaper than both the Evo and the STi. It should have been an option, like on the Avenger!
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Old 12-04-2007, 03:08 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

i think that one of the real truths here about not having AWD, is that portions of this car were built by GEMA, and if they DID offer the srt4 as an AWD package, they are competing too much with the evo, and im sure that mitsubishi didnt like the sound of that.
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Old 12-04-2007, 03:51 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

This is a low volumn car (unlike the Avanger), to get an AWD system for 3G's they would have to sell houndreds of thousands of these to just cover the development costs. We all know this car will not sell that many. And I'm baffled everyone wants AWD, to me the best thing they could have done is gone RWD that would have keep cost down and theyare using one on the Demond so theres 2 cars they could use the RWD system on.
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Old 12-04-2007, 07:36 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

Where to begin?Okay 2coff, let me explain to you why the lower cost approach does not work and has not worked in this category. For years now, Chrysler, Ford, and GM have all offered less expensive offerings in comparison to the Japanese manufactures and the reason why they were less expensive is they didn't offer an equal vehicle. In some cases (GM) what they cutt out was interior quality. In other cases they cutt out performance (Ford). In yet other cases, they cutt out competitive options (Chrysler). This is why they keep losing sales, people want these things and they are willing to pay the extra money for them. Now after being perceived as being inferior for 30 years, when they have caught up or exceeded the competition they are struggling to catch on because of 1 and a half generations of people observing the Big Three offering models that were not competitive. If they want to regain the market, they have to offer an equal or better car while offering a competitive price and demostrate in each of their models that they are superior.

The RWD idea for the SRT-4 is not an answer because RWD is still inferior to the AWD models they would like to compete against. AWD providesmore performance potential while being able to maintain control.Out of all theSRT-8s, the Grand Cherokeehas the lowest 0-60 numbers partly because of the AWD systems superior traction which is not offered in the LX SRTs.To help with theproduction issue with making an SRT-4 AWD theyshould start to offer the SRT-4 engine on more models: the Demon concept, atrue replacement for the Neon,an Avenger and Sebring SRT, and the Caliber version of course. The wider spread of such a powertrain would help with the economies of scale. The simple fact is the Caliber shares the same platform as the Avenger and could use a similar system in theory. Also the production difference between the Caliber and Avenger is really not that different as the Caliber is about a 85K a year seller (besides the fact that they were able to offer the AWD system on the R/T model of the Caliber already).

Patrick: Yes, I definitely think that Mitsubishi had a hand in the reason why the Caliber was not offered in AWD. The reason why I'm so against rebadging and using other company's technology instead of updating and building your own is you will never be allowed to offer the best product possible as it creates a conflict of interest. Take the Stratus/Sebring coupes in comparison to the Eclipse for example, I remember the Eclipse having a slightly higher output version of the 3.0L that was never offered in the Stratus/Sebring coupes. Mitsubishi had to keep their best interests in mind as they would not make as much profit potentially off of the clones as they would on their own model, so naturally they wanted to save their best technology for themselves. It was also true in the case of the Eclipse, Talon, and Laser. The Eclipse was the only version that offered a convertible. In the case of the 3000GT/Stealth, the 3000GT was the only one to get all-wheel-steering. Everytime you look, Mitsubishi gets the best model as they are entitled to it since it was afterall their design. The reverse was also true with the Dakota/Raider. The Dakota was the only one allowed to have the manual with the 4.7L and the only one allowed to have the H.O. 4.7L, now it is the only one with the 4.7L. Joint ventures only benefit the one who designed the car.

DSM models weren'talwaysthe fastest, but they were the most consistent in production and more affordable. The Daytona R/T in some trials was found to be faster than the Talon and Laser, but it was only produced for two years in much lower production, whereas the Eclipse clones ran from 90-94 for the Laser and 90-98 for the Talon. The Stealth was faster than the Daytona R/T by a considerable amount and ran from 91-96, but the Viper was faster (and considerably more expensive).

Also remember that performance as a whole began to disappeared after Eaton was put incharge. The Avenger/Sebring were a step down or two in performance compared to the Daytona and LeBaron. The Stratus/Cirrus/Breeze, never had the competitive engine offerings that the more plan looking Spirit/LeBaron/Acclaim had. The only thing that was an improvement was the LH cars but that was because Chrysler did not have any forced air inducted V6s in any of "their" cars and the 3.5L was a huge step up from the best V6 offering they had to offer before this (the 3.8L OHV). The Neon in the first generation didn't get to enjoy the V6 offering nor the turbo engines that the Shadow and Sundance got to enjoy. So remember to keep the entire picture in mind.

The only good thing that came out of the merger was the return to performance which the short lived Neon SRT-4 was quite fast, but desperately needed AWD to compete against the Evo (as well as some more power).

But back to the Caliber SRT-4, I agree it will not fly off the dealer lots in sales. The closest competitor would be the MAZDASPEED 3 and you don't see those everywhere which says to me that there are no guarantees. I've never been crazy about the whole Caliber idea anyways.
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Old 12-04-2007, 10:31 PM
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

I hate to argue, but Id have to see a Daytona RT, in stock form, that would stay within a ballpark of my laser with just exhaust...the turbo daytona had amazing potential to be madefast, as did many of the turbo dodge models, but the V6 daytonas were pigs compared to the turbo models. many of them which ive seen for sale were automatics, which would make them slower yet...the daytona died with the RT models because they didnt have the performance or the aftermarket of the turbo models.

my awd laser, with exhaust, a minor boost leak, and 120,000+ miles ran a 9.2X 8th mile...amanda truck ran a 9.4 8th mile, which was a 14.8-14.9 quarter mile...ive never seen a daytona RT run better than high 14s...

AWD is far superior to any other drivetrain configuration, unless youre just worried about horsepower figures...for drag racing or road racing, the benefit of 4 drive wheels shadows the extra drivetrain loss of the AWD, unless you have a powerful enough car to lift the front wheels, such as brent raus 6 second 200+ mph eclipse, which is RWD. however, look at shepard racing's 1g talon...high 7s, street legal, with street tires? he is faster than most of the FWD outlaw cars, running full slicks, because he can rip it out of the hole. FWD just doesnt make sense for racing, as the weight transfer is always working AGAINST you...and the drive wheels are being overworked when they are also the steering wheels...and anyone who "doesnt understand the fuss about AWD" doesnt have any experience with AWD...thus isnt qualified to hand out information about it.

the other night, i was coming back from hockey late at night with the laser...crisp, cool night..very dry. i was on a long, sweeping right hand turn, when a mustang came flying along side me...as we would both crack into it, he would pull ahead of me a bit, until he would slide a bit, at which point i would pass him...there was nothing that he could do to get away from me, even though my car has some 60 less bhp, if he was stock..if i was to do the same thing in the stratus, going around this turn under power would cause the wheels to spin, but the laser can take the same turns, under power, 15-20mph faster, and i can accelerate out of the turn much sooner. through the same 180 degree "roundabout", i can come out of it with the laser, some 30mph faster than the stratus..the laser is lighter, and a manual trans, but it has less "stated" power...

from a dig, i can basically side step the clutch at any rpm, and the laser will jump off the line, without a hint of wheelspin...even the stratus, which turned in an 8th mile time a second and a half slower, will spin the tires on a 2500rpm launch, and the same goes for amandas truck, which ran slightly slower times than the laser.

thats why the evo and skylinedominate the racing classes in which they compete, and thats why a huge amount of the quicker street-tire cars at import events are DSMs or Evos.
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:41 AM
dragon8master dragon8master is offline
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Default RE: Eric Heuschele from SRT answers why SRT-4 is FWD

BadStratRT:

I wasn't bagging on Mitsubishi. Actually the only manufacturers I really do bag on are Ford, GM, and Kia. Ford, to me is an onrunning joke. GM, worse than a Jeep as far as maintenance, and you've heard people say how a Jeep will nickel and dime you to death. My dad is a Chevy truck guy, but he's always fixing some stupid little thing, moslty taillight assemblies and door/tailgate latches. Kia, well, I think is just about the cheapest made pieces of junk on the planet.

I actually have respect for cars such as the Evo, GT-R/Skyline, Supra, etc... They are real performers in stock form, with almost unlimited potential in the aftermarket. And that's what people like us are all about, isn't it?
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