Dodge Nitro 3-7I R-T Automatic

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Keywords: car reviews, automotive reviews, automotive news, 2008 dodge nitro

Description: What's new, trim levels, optional equipment, and safety info for the 2008 Dodge Nitro.

At the bottom of the Nitro caste system is the SXT trim level, powered by a 210-hp, 3.7-liter V-6. For $20,290, the Nitro SXT offers 16-inch steel wheels, a six-speed manual transmission, power windows and locks, air conditioning, stability control, anti-lock brakes, curtain airbags, tire-pressure monitoring, an AM-FM-satellite/CD/MP3 stereo with four speakers, and keyless entry. Upgrading to the SXT C package ($1525) adds body-colored fender flares and moldings, tinted glass, 16-inch aluminum wheels, and cruise control.

The next rung on the ladder is the $23,700 SLT version, which gets everything in the SXT C package plus a four-speed automatic, steering-wheel-mounted stereo controls, cloth seats. 17-inch aluminum wheels, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated side mirrors, power seats, and a trip computer.

At $26,875, the R/T model gets a 260-hp, 4.0-liter V-6 with a five-speed automatic that greatly boosts acceleration. In addition to the SLT’s equipment, the R/T gets 20-inch aluminum wheels, stiffer suspension tuning, special R/T sport seats, and chrome exterior accents.

The primary differences among the trim levels are power, price, and suspension firmness. Although the 3.7-liter is more fuel efficient than the R/T’s 4.0-liter, the 210-hp engine works hard to motivate the Nitro. Customers seeking acceleration will be better served by the 260-hp R/T, an engine that is not available in the Jeep Liberty.

The SXT C package ($1525) available on base SXT versions adds body colored exterior moldings and fender flares, floor mats, 16-inch aluminum wheels, tinted glass, and cruise control. The four-speed automatic is $825. All Nitro trims can be ordered with the Travel Convenience Group that adds a trailer hitch, heavy-duty engine and transmission cooling, and a full-size spare tire for $820.

SXT and SLT customers can opt for the Sun and Wheels Group that bundles 17-inch aluminum wheels with a power sunroof for $1270 in the SXT grade or 20-inch chrome wheels with a power sunroof for $1900 in SLT-level Nitros. (The 20-inch wheels can be bought alone for the SLT for $1505.) A power sunroof is available ГѓВ  la carte for $895 in any Nitro. SLT buyers can opt for the $1200 SLT G package that consists of heated front leather seats plus 17-inch chrome wheels. SLT and R/T buyers can also select the Convenience Group ($1345), which adds rear parking sensors, Bluetooth hands-free phone capability, an upgraded eight-speaker stereo with a subwoofer, and a remote-start system. The upgraded stereo is available as a stand-alone option for $945 in the SLT and R/T.

For buyers with kids, the SLT and the R/T offer rear-seat entertainment with a seven-inch LCD screen with DVD and auxiliary capabilities for $1300. Those same two trims can be ordered with touch-screen GPS navigation for $2145, which nets the eight-speaker stereo, Bluetooth capability, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and the hard-drive-based MyGIG music storage device. R/T customers can select leather seats for $830.

The Nitro has an excellent array of safety equipment—all of it standard. A full complement of airbags plus ABS, traction control, and stability control with a trailer-sway function and rollover mitigation are included.

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