Dodge to gatecrash Fiesta party | CAR Magazine

Dodge to gatecrash Fiesta party

Published: 30 July 2006 Updated: 26 January 2015

American brand Dodge is plotting a small hatch to take on Ford’s Fiesta, with sales likely in 2008.

Chrysler Group is in talks with three potential partners, to share a chassis for the baby Dodge. Chrysler boss Tom LaSorda told CAR Online that talks were ongoing with car makers from ‘western Europea and Asia’, and that he would make a decision on the project by the end of 2006. ‘We are in negotiation to land a contract for joint assembly and purchasing of B segment cars,’ said LaSorda. DaimlerChrysler previewed a baby Dodge in the form of the Hornet concept, unveiled at the 2006 Geneva show. Although the show car was closer in size to a Focus than a Fiesta, particularly in width, the design could be downscaled to supermini proportions. Nissan’s boxy Cube is similar in concept, and is spun off the Micra’s chassis. Volkswagen is definitely in the running, although it may offer a bigger but still low-cost architecture, that uses elements of the previous Golf’s chassis. VW plans to use this platform for a budget car in North America, to satisfy burgeoning interest in small cars Stateside. Dodge will happily piggyback VW’s platform, as it chases the same market. The production car will be true to the Dodge blueprint, as epitomised by the Caliber: bold styling, and a cut-throat price. Expect a similar tall roof design, to maximise cabin space while keeping the car’s overall footprint as compact as possible.

By Phil McNamara

Group editor, CAR magazine