2007 Dodge Nitro

Nitro Average SUV

by Joe LaMuraglia

2007 Dodge Nitro

It wasn’t that long ago that SUVs became the vehicle of choice in the U.S. Consumers realized that they liked the ride height, the “go-anywhere” capability and the cargo capacity that these overgrown wagons offered. Soon, SUVs began cropping up in various sizes to meet various tastes. What was once only available in biggie size soon became available in small, medium and large variants. The people of America rejoiced to ask their local dealership when would they be able to stop by and check out their used car lot!

The Happy Meal version, technically called Compact SUVs, became one of the fastest growing segments. Unlike traditional SUVs that evoke images of ruggedness and the outdoorsy spirit, the less-large versions tend to be on the more feminine side when it came to styling. Thus the name “cute-utes” was born.

2007 Dodge Nitro

These estrogen-inspired compact utility vehicles offer the high seating position, cargo capacity and implied off-road prowess without the nightmares of parking and the sticker shock at the pump. They can even be fun-to-drive if equipped with the proper engine. So, what’s wrong with this picture? Research showed that most men wouldn’t be caught dead in one. Enter the 2007 Dodge Nitro.

Based on a stretched version of the popular Jeep Liberty, the 2007 Dodge Nitro introduces some testosterone into the Compact SUV segment. This is no Cute-Ute, it is a Brute-Ute. The styling clearly says “get the hell out of my way” from the front yet reminds you of the sophisticated Land Rover LR3 from the side. It is angular, straight forward and oddly void of anything that says “off road” – as if it is acknowledging that nobody actually takes these vehicles off pavement. As someone said at the introduction, “the Nitro is Badass with a touch of class”. Enough said.

2007 Dodge Nitro

Powered by a choice of two engines and three transmissions, you are sure to find a Nitro that will meet your needs and appetite. The top-of-the-line Nitro R/T comes with a 260 hp 4.0-liter V6 engine paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission, 20-inch wheels and a performance suspension. Based on the time we spent with the smaller V6 and 4-speed auto, if you want the muscle to match the looks, go for the larger engine. If you are a city cruiser and aren’t as concerned as much about raw horsepower, the 3.7-liter V6 should do the trick. Both engines are available with either part-time four-wheel drive (manual transmission) or full-time four-wheel drive systems (automatic transmission). Rear-wheel drive is standard on all trim levels.

2007 Dodge Nitro

The Nitro is loaded with safety features and functional options that further set it apart from its competitors. Most notable are the LOAD ‘N GO cargo floor, the YES Essentials cloth seats and optional MyGIG multimedia infotainment system. LOAD ‘NO GO is Dodge’s name for a sliding rear cargo floor that allows easier loading of items in the rear cargo area as well as a nice seat for tailgating. Those with children (young and old) will appreciate the YES Essentials fabric standard on the SLT and the R/T. It is a miracle fabric that repels stains, controls odors and reduces static electricity. MyGIG almost warrants an entire article. It is a 20-gigabyte hard drive that powers the Nav system, provides storage for up to 1,600 songs and even stores photos. Want a picture of your partner in your car? MyGIG can handle up 8 on the screen at one time! It is perfect for those of you terrified of commitment (smile).

If you want a compact/midsize SUV that looks like it wasn’t designed for Barbie, you need to check out the 2007 Dodge Nitro. It is the perfect size for most tasks, is fun to drive and doesn’t even bother to pretend that it is going to go off road. I’ll have mine with a protein shake please.

2007 Dodge Nitro starting at $19,885

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One thought on “2007 Dodge Nitro

  1. I agree totally, I’ve seen some on the road and they are really good looking. Hoping to test drive soon. The falling through the world commercials is also one of my top 5. 🙂

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