Dodge will unveil its new 2013 compact car during the January 2012 Detroit Auto Show. Since this is the first all-new car designed by the combined Chrysler and Fiat Company that will debut three months from now, we are used to expecting information to leak prior to the car’s official unveiling, whether from spies and insiders or scheduled leaks from the company itself.
However, in this case, little is known about the new compact so far. Possibly named the Dodge Hornet (concept above), the new compact will replace the dated Caliber hatchback and aims to bring the fight back to its staple competitors Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic, Ford Focus, and Hyundai Elantra.
Built on a modified C-Evo chassis that underpins the Alfa Romeo Giulietta and sharing powerplants with Fiat, the Dodge compact will be slightly wider than the European variant in order to provide space for the mandatory-for-the-U.S. safety equipment, but will otherwise share identical dimensions. Because of this, a major concern has risen due to its length of only 171 inches, which is significantly shorter than its competitors. Comparatively, the length of a Chevrolet Cruze is almost a foot longer at 181 inches.
Falling between compact and subcompact, the success of Dodge’s new small car will greatly depend on how cleverly packaged the cabin space will be. After all, it’s now how big it is, it’s how you use it.