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1997 Dodge Avenger

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Expert Rating

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

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1997 Base 2dr Coupe
most popular
Price:   -  From $14,620
1997 ES 2dr Coupe Price:   -  From $17,590


Most of us don't worry about an inch here or an inch there - unless, of course, we're on a diet and there's a class reunion just around the corner. Generally speaking, one of these small dimensional units just doesn't make much of a difference in our lives. But in the automobile business, an extra inch, strategically placed, can give your car a big advantage over its competition. That's one of the big reasons for the resurgence of the Chrysler Corporation. Starting with the LH cars (the Chrysler Concorde, Dodge Intrepid and Eagle Vision), Chrysler designers have made sure each of their cars has had a little edge - an extra inch or so - in roominess, especially rear-seat roominess. Obviously, it helps that all these new Chrysler cars look good. And when it comes down to tiebreakers, that extra inch of rear legroom, combined with smart looks, can make a pretty big difference. Particularly in the rear seat of a swoopy sport coupe. Enter the Dodge Avenger. It's not the hottest thing in its class. Almost every sport coupe on the market, including Chrysler's own Eagle Talon, offers an edition that makes the Avenger's performance look pretty ho-hum. But thanks to Chrysler's inch-consciousness, the Avenger offers something none of the so-called 2+2 coupes can match. An adult can sit in the Avenger's rear seat without first qualifying as a circus contortionist. In fact, among the affordable sport coupes, only the much bigger Ford Thunderbird offers more rear legroom. The Avenger's rear seat even has a legroom edge - albeit a very tiny one - over the new Chevrolet Monte Carlo, a car that's just as long as the Thunderbird. Is this a big deal? You bet. The No. 1 complaint of small sport-coupe owners concerns inadequate rear-seat legroom. Sooner or later your sport coupe will accommodate a rear-seat passenger, and you'll probably want that passenger to emerge feeling as good as when he or she climbed into your car. The Dodge Avenger should elicit that response. Avengers are offered in two trim levels: the base model and the upper-level Avenger ES. The rock-bottom price for a basic - very basic - Avenger is $13,876, including destination charge. ES models start at $17,726 and include 4-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock braking (ABS), alloy wheels, air conditioning, cruise control and an AM/FM/cassette sound system. Our test ES was also equipped with a preferred equipment package - power locks/mirrors/windows plus dual illuminated vanity mirrors - for a ready-to-roll total of $18,585. If you added a sunroof, CD player, leather seats and keyless remote entry, you could manage to spend $21,222. But those high-priced options are typical of all cars.

Specs & Features

Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Available
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
Standard: 2.0L I-4 / 140 HP / 130 ft.lbs.
Available: 2.5L V-6 / 163 HP / 170 ft.lbs.
Standard: 5-spd man w/OD
Available: 4-spd auto w/OD
Drive Type
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
22 / 32 / 27 Mpg
Passenger Capacity
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
Standard: 2.0L I-4 / 140 HP / 130 ft.lbs.
Available: 2.5L V-6 / 163 HP / 170 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
Fuel Economy - City/Hwy/Combined
22 / 32 / 27 Mpg
Front Disc/rear Drum / 4-wheel Disc
Front Suspension
Double Wishbone
Rear Suspension
Independent Double Wishbone
Spare Tire And Wheel
Compact Steel
Fuel Tank
16.9 Gal.
Recommended Fuel Type
Regular Unleaded
Average Cost To Fill Tank
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
13.1 Cu.ft.
Passenger Volume
91 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
187.2 "
Exterior Width
68.5 "
Exterior Height
53.0 "
Front Headroom
39.2 "
Rear Headroom
36.4 "
Front Legroom
43.3 "
Rear Legroom
35.0 "
Front Shoulder Room
52.8 "
Rear Shoulder Room
54.7 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
2,879 Lbs.
Wheel Base
104 "
Turning Radius
19.7 '
Exterior Features
Door Count
2 Doors
14.0 " Steel / 17.0 "
Monotone / Monotone With Badging
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Manual Remote / Dual Power Remote
Grille Moldings
Rear Spoiler
Stainless Steel / Stainless Steel With Chrome Tailpipe Finish
Interior Features
Passenger Capacity
Seat Trim
Front Seat Type
Heated Front Seats
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
8-way / 6-way (4-way Power)
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
Front Armrests
8-way / 6-way (4-way Power)
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
60-40 Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Am/fm Stereo, Clock, Seek-scan / Am/fm Stereo, Seek-scan / Premium Am Stereo/fm Stereo, Seek-scan
4 / 6
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Climate Control
Cruise Control
Sun Roof
Rearview Mirror
One Touch Open Window
Tinted Windows
Vanity Mirrors
Remote Keyless Entry
Keyfob (all Doors)
Power Outlets
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Knee Airbag
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Rear Side Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Blind Spot Sensor
Lane Departure Warning
Autonomous Cruise Control
Pedestrian Detection
Driver Attention Alert
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Security Systems
Security System
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Major Components Months
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
Roadside Assistance Months
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
60 Months / 100,000 Miles
Accessories Months

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