The Dodge Stratus is a mid-size car manufactured and marketed by the Dodge division of Chrysler from 1994 to 2006 (sedan) and from 2000 to 2005 (coupe).
After the Stratus sedan was discontinued in 2006, Dodge sold the production line and equipment to a Russian company called GAZ. From 2008 to 2010, GAZ produced 9,000 vehicles of a significantly modified Stratus called the Volga Siber.
History of the Dodge Stratus
First Generation Dodge Stratus (1994–2000)
The 1995–1997 ES model of the Stratus came standard with a 2.0 L straight-4 and offered a SOHC 2.4 L and a 2.5 L V6 as options. The base model (renamed SE in 2000) came standard with the 2.0 L straight-4 and offered the SOHC 2.4 L as an option. The ES featured a DOHC 2.4 L as standard equipment and a 2.5 L V6 as an option in 1998; in 1999 and 2000, the 2.5 L V6 was no longer an option. The Chrysler Cirrus may have had the nicer interior components, but the Dodge Stratus would have given the driver a sportier feel at a lower price. When naming its models' offspring, Chrysler drew inspiration from the weather, revealing to auto enthusiasts that, like Cirrus clouds, stratus clouds are lower in the sky than the more elusive Cirrus. Compared to the Dodge Stratus, the Chrysler 300 was both more expensive and luxurious. The automobile's aerodynamic design began with a thin front end and tiny headlamps; the rising lines of the car culminated in a trunk lid higher than the windscreen's base. The Stratus's cabin could fit five people thanks to its two front bucket seats and the rear bench. The interior comfortably accommodated adults of average height and weight, even at the rear. Since Dodge did not provide a comparable model in Canada, the Stratus was only sold there for one final year (2000), after which the Chrysler Sebring became the company's sole lower mid-size sedan. The Stratus was marketed and sold in Europe with a 2.0 L or V6 engine. Due to the unavailability of the Chrysler Cirrus in Brazil, the Stratus was offered there instead. The vehicle's engines were identical to those found in the North American model, but they lifted it slightly to accommodate the rougher terrain of Brazilian roads.
The Stratus provided a choice of three engines, all of which were between 2.0L and 2.5L, unlike the Cirrus' single engine option. The latter was a holdover from Mitsubishi. A four-speed automatic gearbox was an available extra on the entry-level model and was standard on all other models save the 130 horsepower variant.
Engines: 2.0 L A588 I4, 2.4 L EDZ/EY7 I4, 2.4 L EDV/EDT turbo I4 and 2.5 L 6G73 V6.
Second Generation Dodge Stratus (2000–2006)
Only the Stratus and the Plymouth brand remained as the final "Cloud Cars" after the Cirrus was rebranded as the Sebring and the Breeze was withdrawn in 2000. Although this 1999 model year marked the end of Dodge Stratus sales in Canada, Dodge never offered this version. There was no longer a "DODGE" logo on the hood or front doors of the 2002 versions. In addition to the Chrysler Cirrus and the Plymouth Breeze, the Stratus was the final member of the cloud-series automobiles, all of which were built on the JR platform. In 2001, it was clear that the "cloud-car" concept was doomed, as sales were dismal. And yet, Chrysler has chosen to keep the Stratus and has even given it a facelift. The car was dependable and well-liked by its buyers, but its design was dated and came in only two trim levels. A 2.4L inline-4 engine was standard on the SE trim level. But the ES, the highest specification, had a 2.7L V6 engine that produced 200 horsepower.
Engines: 2.4L EDZ I4, 2.4L EDV/EDT turbo I4 (Mexico), 2.7L EER V6, 2.4L 4G64 I4 and 3.0L 6G72 V6.
In 2006, Dodge retailed the Dodge Stratus with a starting MSRP of $20,825 for the base SXT Sedan, rising to $23,755 for the R/T Sedan.
- SXT Sedan - $20,825 ($30,594 in 2022)
- R/T Sedan - $23,755 ($34,898 in 2022)
Features of the Dodge Stratus
Chrysler designed the Stratus when bio-design was still popular, but it had already died out by then. The body's curvy lines were, however, no longer modern. Even with a new front fascia that included Viper-inspired headlights and a crosshair grille, the vehicle sales did not rise.
Modifications to the car's interior prioritize passenger safety. The optional anti-lock brakes, however, seemed dated for a vehicle from 2001. Dodge put in a pair of velour-upholstered bucket seats to start things off upfront. Simultaneously, leather upholstery was available as a premium upgrade. The 60/40 split-folding bench seat in the back offered space for three passengers and folded down to reveal a trunk. The dashboard's design gave the driver the impression that they were being engulfed by it. Although the four-door sedan was not quite a sports car, its stylish white instruments with red needles added a nice touch.
Dodge Stratus was released from 1994 to 2006 as a sedan model and from 2000 to 2005 as a coupe model. Dodge discontinued the Dodge Stratus in 2006 to make way for the Dodge Avenger.