Dodge and SRT Motorsports have announced an all-new 2013 Dodge Dart rally car piloted by four-time Rally America Champion and 17-time X Games Gold Medalist Travis Pastrana will compete in the 2012 Global RallyCross Championship (GRC) Series.
“At Dodge, racing is an integral part of our heritage and embodies our competitive spirit, so we’re very excited to announce the next chapter in racing for Dodge with our all-new Dodge Dart,” said Reid Bigland, president and CEO-”Dodge Brand. “The new Dart Global RallyCross Championship car with 600 hp and driver Travis Pastrana takes our passion for performance to all new heights.”
Pastrana, 28, is a four-time Rally America champion and owner of multiple Supercross and motocross championships. He also owns Nitro Circus, an empire that includes a television show, live tours and 3-D feature film project. Pastrana is one of the most searched athletes in the world (6 million Google searches in 2010) and he has more than 3.5 million Facebook followers.
“When I first heard about GRC, I was really interested, and after watching some of the rounds last year and then actually competing at X Games I was hooked!” said Pastrana. “Now to be able to partner with Dodge to field my own program this year is a dream come true. The new Dodge Dart offers the perfect platform for rally cross, and I look forward to putting it on the podium all season long!”
Ralph Gilles, president and CEO – Street and Racing Technology Brand and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC, said that having Pastrana piloting a Dodge Dart and competing in GRC is a natural fit.
“Travis is a living example of what action sports activities are all about, so he fits in perfectly with the youthfulness and passion for performance of the Dodge brand and the SRT Motorsports team,” said Gilles. “He’s proven that he can handle just about anything with wheels, so it’s going to be great to watch him pilot our new Dodge Dart in Global RallyCross.”
The Dart rally car is custom-built specifically for Global RallyCross racing, but shares a few traits with the production Dodge Dart. Both vehicles have serious aerodynamics, are agile and fun to drive and will add a little excitement to their segments. Powered by a purpose-built 2.0-liter, 4-cylinder, 16-valve turbo-charged 600-hp engine mated to a Sedav 4-wheel drive gear box that puts out more than 550 foot-pounds of torque, the Dart rally car is ready to race.
The 2013 production Dodge Dart features three state-of-the-art powertrains that produce up to 184 hp and 184 foot-pounds of torque. The Dart features an athletic, sporty exterior, a world-class interior with high-quality materials, state-of-the art technology and enough exterior and interior color and material choices to fit any customer, according to a press release.
David Bailey, Senior Engineering Manager for SRT Motorsports, knows the new Dodge Dart rally car is equipped to handle the intense racing conditions.
“The sport is extremely exciting and the on-track action can be brutal on the drivers and the cars,” said Bailey. “The cars are jumping higher than ever and landing safely. The Dart rally car is lightweight with a very powerful motor. The 0- 60 mph times are incredible, as low as 1.9 seconds, so with Travis behind the wheel, we can’t wait for the season opener.”
Global RallyCross is a spin-off of the X Games rally races. It combines the skill of rally racing with the excitement of X Games. The series enters its second season and features high-flying extreme competition between cars that are relevant to today’s youth. The series consists of seven racing events in closed-course rally tracks and incorporates bumper-to-bumper competition among the all-wheel drive vehicles. There are 70-foot jumps over racing traffic, creating a “motocross with cars” action.
The series begins May 26 in Charlotte, N.C., and concludes Sept. 29 in Las Vegas.
Some of the Dart’s features include “great exterior proportions and unmistakable Dodge cues like the ‘racetrack’ tail lamps and signature front grille. The exterior not only looks good, but delivers world-class aerodynamic performance and an agile, fun-to-drive experience on the road. The Dart is the first Chrysler Group vehicle built on Fiat Group architecture; it’s based off of the award-winning Alfa Romeo Giulietta,” the release stated.
“Interior comfort and style are on target for drivers and passengers with a modern blend of precision craftsmanship, exciting bursts of color and more interior roominess than some midsize sedans. The new Dodge Dart offers drivers thousands of ways to personalize their car with 12 exterior colors, 14 interior color and trim combinations, three fuel-efficient engines, three transmissions, six wheel choices and five trim levels,” the company added.