When Dodge replaced their Neon entry-level car, the brand took a radically different approach. Debuting in 2007, the Dodge Caliber was a wagon-like subcompact with strong crossover vehicle styling cues. The Dodge Caliber was introduced with three powerplant choices from what was known as Chryslers World Gasoline Engine family. Serving as the base engine for the vehicle from 2007 to 2009, a 1.8-liter four-cylinder powerplant delivered 148 horsepower of output.
Providing ten addition horsepower over the 1.8-liter power unit, the 2.0-liter engine was optional on the SE and SXT until 2010 when it became the Dodge Calibers standard powerplant. On the Caliber R/T, a 2.4-liter engine producing 172 horsepower gave the Dodge compact car a potent boost. Engines of the 2007 Dodge Caliber were connected to either a five-speed manual gearbox or a continuously variable transmission. For the 2007 and 2008 model year, the Caliber R/T was available with all-wheel drive as opposed to the standard front-wheel drive.
In 2008, the Caliber was given treatment by the Street and Racing Technology engineering team under the Chrysler umbrella. Including performance design touches such as a non-chrome grille, large hood scoop and a racy rear roof spoiler, the 2008 Dodge Caliber SRT4 a highly potent, turbocharged 2.4-liter inline-four powerplant was mated with a six-speed manual transmission. The 2008 Caliber SRT4 provided 280 horsepower of front-wheel propulsion while still maintaining the practical qualities found with the base Caliber. The Dodge Caliber SRT4 version was discontinued after the 2010 model year.
Configured for up to five-passenger occupancy, the interior of the Dodge Caliber could expand to as much as 35.7 cubic feet of cargo volume room. Air conditioning and power windows were standard on the Caliber. Unique options on the Dodge Caliber included a MusicGate sound system and a Chill Zone glove compartment. After 2012, the Dodge Dart compact sedan replaced the Caliber.