Is the Dodge Avenger a sports car or not? In this blog, we researched the two generations of the Dodge Avenger and compared its characteristics to that of a sports car. What we found is that the answer is not that simple. Take a look:
The first generation of the Dodge Avenger can be considered a sports car because it was relatively powerful for its era, has a design focused on aerodynamics, and has a 2-door coupe. The second generation of the Dodge Avenger is not a sports car because its design is a 4-door sedan. Furthermore, most of the engines used in this generation aren’t that powerful.
However, that doesn’t tell the whole story. Below we’ll discuss the engine, design, weight, and drivetrain of the Avenger in detail to determine whether these elements fit that of a sports car or not. Furthermore, we’ll also discuss whether or not the car is seen as a sports car for insurance purposes. Read on!
First of all, it’s important to look at what kind of engine the Avenger has. There’s no general rule of what kind of engine a car should have to be a sports car. However, in general, a 1.2-liter engine can’t really be considered sporty.
As you can see below, the Avenger has had several different engines during its production years. In all years, the car has had both an inline-4 engine and a V6.
You could choose between a 2.0 I4 with 150 hp and a 2.5 V6 with 161 hp for the first generation. Considering this car was built between 1994 – 2000 (when cars weren’t all that powerful yet), we would say that that does fall into the ‘sports’ category. It certainly isn’t anything mind-boggling, but it’s also not really slow.
- 1994 – 2000: 2.0 I4 , 2.5 V6
- 2008 – 2010: 2.0 I4, 2.4 I4, 2.7 V6, 3.5 V6
- 2011 – 2014: 2.4 I4, 3.6 V6
In 2008 Dodge decided to bring out the second generation of the Avenger. The style of the car changed a lot (we’ll talk about that in a moment), and so did the engines. The 2.0 I4 delivered 140 hp, the 2.4 I4 175 hp, 2.7 V6 185 hp, and the 3.5 V6 238 hp.
Personally, we would say that the 2.0 engines aren’t all that sporty. Especially for a car produced from 2008 – 2010, the number of horsepowers is almost the same as its predecessor. Furthermore, the car was also a lot bulkier (we’ll also talk about that) which means the power-to-weigh-ratio dropped.
On the other hand, the V6’s do provide a fair amount of horsepower. The 2.7 V6 isn’t all that impressive, but the 3.5 V6 does provide the power you would expect from a sports car.
The second leg of the second generation had a 2.4 I4 with 175 hp and a 3.6 V6 with a generous 287 hp. For us, the same thing applies as said before: the 2.4 is not really a sports-car-like, but the 3.6 V6 certainly is.
By the way, did you know that these engines are actually really reliable? We wrote an article about how many miles a Dodge Avenger can last. Check it out!
Besides the engine, there’s also the design of the car. As a general rule of thumb, we would say that a true sports car is a 2-door coupe or cabriolet. Anything that doesn’t fit that category is most likely not a sports car.
Here, there’s a difference between the two generations of the Avenger. The first generation is indeed a classic two-door coupe. Okay, the car may not look much like a sports car by today’s standards, but almost 25 years ago, the car did have a certain sports car appeal. From that standpoint, we would say that the Avenger (especially the one with the 2.5 V6) is a sports car.
On the other hand, the second generation Avenger was only available as a 4-door sedan. That’s immediately also the point where we say that this is not a sports car. Yes, the car may have certain design elements that make it look sporty (e.g., the front bumper), but that’s where the sports element stops. The rest of the car looks like a normal 4-door sedan.
Combining this second-generation car with a 2.0 I4 engine is definitely not a sports car. If you have a 3.6 V6 engine, you have a powerful 4-door sedan that’s still not a sports car.
Also read: Is The Dodge Dart A Sports Car?
Besides the engine type and the car’s design, some other elements can help us identify whether or not an Avenger is a sports car. One of those elements is weight.
As a rule, a sports car has to be light. Let’s not forget that the car is made for speed and handling and because it needs to go around a track quickly; it needs to weigh as little as possible. Again, there are big differences here between the generations.
The first-generation Avenger weighs an average of 2.822 pounds. We would consider anything around 3.000 pounds to be sports car weight. For example, a modern-day Mazda MX-5 weighs around 2.400 lbs, but a Toyota Supra weighs at 3.181 – 3.400 lbs. Anything close to 4.000 or over is most likely not really a sports car (or it has an enormous engine that makes up for the difference).
On the other hand, there’s the second generation that weighs between 3.400 – 3.607 pounds. If this car were a sports car, that would be on the heavy side, although we think it would still be possible. However, since we’re talking about a 4-door sedan, we wouldn’t really say this is a sports car.
Yes, this point is debatable, but for us, it doesn’t really prove it’s a sports car. If you have the 3.6 V6 with 287 hp and think 4-door cars can also be sports cars, then this car qualifies for the category. To us, it doesn’t.
What kind of drive system the car uses can also be an important characteristic of a sports car. Most sports cars have a rear-wheel-drive system with the engine as close to the middle of the car as possible (although most will still have it in the front). Rear-wheel-drive cars drift easier and are generally considered to be more fun to drive.
Looking at the first generation of the Avenger, we see this is a car with front-wheel drive and an engine in the front. Especially the fact that this can have front-wheel drive is something that doesn’t really scream sports car. Although we have to say, there are other ‘sports’ cars (such as the Fiat Barchetta and Opel Tigra) with a front-wheel-drive system.
The second generation is basically the same story: the car has the engine in the front, and most of them have front-wheel drive. Also, there’s an AWD version available. Since the ’90s, it has become more normal for sports cars to have all-wheel drive to be still considered sports car-like.
Is The Dodge Avenger A Sports Car For Insurance Purposes
Whether or not a Dodge Avenger is considered a sports car for insurance purposes isn’t that relevant. Reason being that insurance companies factor in all different kinds of requirements, and they don’t really tell you what kind of category they put a certain car in.
Using carinsurancecomparison.com, we found that, on average, it costs around $1,402 a year to insure a 2014 Dodge Avenger. Considering this low price, we would say that insurance companies do not see the Avenger as a sports car.
Suppose you’re interested in insuring a second-hand Dodge Avenger, then we highly advise you to check out Allstate. In general, they provide the cheapest insurance for cars like the Avenger. Check the rate of an Avenger here on the website of Allstate.
Hi! My name is Stefan; I’m the owner and lead writer at TheDriverAdviser.com.
I’m an active writer on this blog myself, as well as a novice car mechanic. For the really technical stuff, I find writers with experience as a mechanic or who have studied mechanical engineering.
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