Ralph Gilles and his SRT team are already planning improvements to the Dart and preparing its SRT4 performance version even as the Dart is highly praised. The base Dart shares many similarities with the Alfa Romeo Giulietta platform so it’s expected that the Dart SRT4 will use an upgraded version of the Giulietta Cloverleaf's dual-clutch, six-speed transmission.
It’s likely that it won’t have Cloverleaf's 1.7-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder since it only delivers 230 hp. The Dart SRT4 has to be built impressively because Ford's Focus ST will start to be seen on the roads by summer.
The Focus ST is powered by a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder that has an output of least 247 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. What’s sure is that the SRT4 would offer at least the same output as the last-generation Caliber SRT4, which was powered by a turbo 2.4-liter that delivers 285 hp and 265 lb-ft. It’s expected that the all-aluminum, direct-injection, 300-hp four-cylinder engine that would be used in the much-anticipated Alfa Romeo 4C is an ideal but costly fit.
What’s considered as a better option is a turbocharged and intercooled larger displacement version of the Dart's Tigershark 2.0-liter. When it comes to the chassis and aerodynamics aspect, SRT engineers are expected to use the same race logic used throughout the Chrysler/Dodge line.
The Dart SRT4 is equipped with all types of functional scoops and vents, an aggressive rear deck spoiler, and vertigo-inducing handling due to its stiffer springs and dampers, bigger wheels, and upgraded rubber. If it comes with a turbo Tigershark, it’s expected to be priced comparably to the Focus ST. For 300hp, it’s expected to be priced higher but slightly below the AWD VW Golf R and Subaru WRX STI at more than $30,000.