In the summer of Thor and Captain America, it’s impossible not to draw filmic, fisticuffed connections to the 2011 Dodge Avenger, especially when the vehicle in question’s fully assembled. The SXT options on this drive increased the cost significantly, but you can’t put a price on justice.
As with the comic-book craze, there’s a proud nostalgia to this 2011 Dodge. Forget about trying to look European or Asian — this car is classic American muscle, and proud of it. From the broadness of the hood, back to the spoiler capping the wide trunk above the dual exhaust, and all mounted atop 18″ x 7″ aluminum chrome wheels, the Avenger is forever in mid-pose.
A heroic upgrade from the standard 4-cylinder to a 3.6L V6 VVT Pentastar engine puts 283 horsepower and 260lb-ft of torque beneath your foot. And while it may be slightly more reminiscent of American muscle than you’d like in the city (11L/100 km), it delivers an impressive 6.8 on the highway.
When your inner Thor wants to the put the hammer down, the autostick transmission lets you tap your way into the next gear and squeeze the most from those ponies. You’ll also feel the road more closely: a good thing, as the suspension was redesigned for sheer comfort. No rattling spinal massage here; on sharp turns, it’s like you’re being swung gently in a hammock.
Comfort blessed with performance can make us cocky, so stay alert.
If your routine involves a good deal of highway driving, this is a real contender. Additional upgrades enhance the experience, including a Garmin Nav system on a touch-screen media centre that plays nearly everything and stores over 4,000 songs. The entire interior cabin is a treat for the senses, with soft-touch materials throughout, a year of satellite radio, heated front seats and an 8-direction power driver’s seat.
There are plenty of safety features — as you’d expect from a crime fighter — but when Dodge uses the descriptor ‘performance sedan,’ the Avenger’s accent is definitely on performance. Translation? If your girlfriend likes it too, marry her.
2011 Dodge Avenger
Base Price: $23,995
As Driven: $30,540
Image courtesy of Tabercil.