Dodge Dakota makes mid-size bigger

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The little truck is gone.

Those little Toyota, Nissan and Ford miniatures that puttered around with their paltry 4-bangers in the ‘80s are now just a piece of automotive history. Trucks, like engine sizes, are getting bigger, and the death of the true compact truck is indeed at hand.

In fact, we read the obituaries in 2003 with the introduction of the Chevrolet Colorado and the GMC Canyon and last fall with the introduction of a new Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier.

Dodge Charger SRT8 – muscle for everyone

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Once upon a time the homemaker wife needed a car to visit her sister. The husband, an auto dealer, was on a business trip and the only vehicle in the driveway was a 2006 Dodge Charger SRT8.

The wife’s choice boiled down to taking the Charger or staying home. Not likely.

Dodge Ram Mega Cab – a big brut and thirsty too

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The dictionary defines mega as “large.”

The Dodge Ram Mega Cab has been aptly named. The Mega Cab is akin to a limousine with a six-foot bed attached. It takes the increasingly popular crew cab pickup truck to a new level of spaciousness. If you were so inclined you could camp out in the rear seat and watch your favorite video on the optional rear entertainment system before dropping off to sleep.

Dodge Caliber makes it easy to forget Neon

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Hatchbacks are remarkably functional. They turn a small car into a practical car capable of hauling a lot of stuff in addition to two front-seat passengers.

And with gas prices having become a major concern, the practicality of hatchbacks is being revisited by manufacturers. That’s because most of the really useful hatch designs are found on compact-sized cars with small appetites for fuel.

Dodge Nitro — head-turning crossover

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

We were sitting in the parking lot of a convenience going through the Sirius satellite radio offerings when a couple women walked by obviously admiring the red Dodge Nitro R/T.

"Look at that truck. That's what I want," one of them remarked to the other as they slid past keeping their eyes glued on the in-your-face Nitro.

Dodge Dakota – if you need it it’s the only V-8 in the class

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

It seems that Chrysler’s biggest problem is too few products that stand out, that say check me out first before going to another store. And if buyers consistently avoid Chrysler stores, all is lost for the re-emerging company.

Despite Consumer Reports magazine’s recent proclamation that most of Chrysler’s products are generally inferior, Chrysler has some good stuff, certainly worthy of a look and in most cases worthy of a test drive.

Dodge Avenger, a bit macho and different in a tough segment

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The 2008 Dodge Avenger brings a bold attitude to the popular mid-sized sedan segment dominated by the mainstream Honda Accord and Toyota Camry.

Dodge Journey – worthy of a trip

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

If we had an old trophy we would take it out of the attic, dust it off, re-engrave it and hand it to Dodge for best SUV crossover interior design.

It seems the Dodge boys have hit all the right notes when designing the inside space of the all-new mid-sized 2009 Dodge Journey.

Dodge Challenger R/T – muscle begets nostalgia

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

“This car is just stupid cool!”

That was the assessment of one of our occasional riders as he was climbing out of our Dodge Challenger R/T test car.

Those spontaneous seconds of admiration came from a life-long Chevrolet devotee who then added that the upcoming Chevrolet Camaro would have to be something beyond special to convince him to buy it over the new, hot Dodge.

And hot it is, at least in the minds of the car-loving public.

Dodge Ram – for the love of work

By Ted Biederman and Jim Meachen

It is a heck of a time to be introducing new, big trucks in a market that has taken a dramatic downturn. Sure today a gallon of gas is about $2.00. But a couple of months ago when Dodge introduced this new Ram 1500, gas was over $4.00 a gallon. We hate to throw dirt in an open wound but logic and gut tells us that $4.00 plus gasoline is probably in our future, again.