Belvidere, Ill. -- The first vehicle to evolve from Chrysler’s alliance with Italian-based Fiat is the all-new Dodge Dart, which is based on the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, an upscale Italian hatchback that is popular in much of Europe.
“This is a crucial vehicle launch for the company as we re-enter the compact sedan market” said Doug Betts, Senior Vice President – Quality, Chrysler Group LLC. “We’ve invested $20 million in new quality tools and processes at the Belvidere Assembly Plant to achieve the strict quality targets we set for Dodge Dart.”
When Dodge engineers began developing the new Dart, before prototypes were built, they literally cut a Giulietta in half, widened it and welded the body to match Dart’s dimensions to create several engineering mule vehicles for testing.
Dodge is testing the Dart day and night, on all kinds of road surfaces, at high and low altitudes and through blizzard conditions, as well as dry, desert heat. All that testing adds up to more than 8.5 million reliability validation miles.