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News Summary: Dart aims at small car bulls-eye

Wednesday - 6/20/2012, 4:52pm  ET

By The Associated Press

(AP) - WHAT'S NEW: The Dodge Dart, a sleek four-door compact that's hitting showrooms en masse this week. It's the first car designed jointly by Chrysler and its Italian owner, Fiat SpA.

FEATURES: The Dart is built on the underpinnings of an Italian sports car, the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. Buyers can choose from three four-cylinder engines, including a sporty 184-horsepower turbo. The car has aggressive looks, sloping from back to front with creases along the side and a rounded front end. It also has LED tail lights across the back just like the Dodge Challenger muscle car.

IMPACT: The Dart gives Chrysler a strong entry in the small-car market, where it hasn't competed in years. It's good enough to go toe to toe with the perennial front-runners, the Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)