Reviewers from The Car Connection, Edmunds.com and Autoweek have more criticism than praise for Dodge's Caliber compact hatchback that was produced between 2007 and 2012. Critics called the Caliber's CVT transmission sloppy and its interior cheap, among other complaints.
The Car Connection speaks generally unfavorably of the Dodge Caliber's interior, calling it roomy but a letdown in build quality. The online publication also calls the CVT transmission version of the car sluggish, though notes performance is more adequate for cars equipped with the five-speed manual transmission.
Editors at Autoweek.com, driving a later 2011 Dodge Caliber Rush found the car pleasant enough for daily errands but noted that it still fell short of most competing compact cars.
Edmunds.com notes that road test editors found the car "an adequate daily driver, but not much more than that." The general consensus is that Dodge did some clever things with the Caliber's tall hatchback body style interior packaging, but powertrains and an interior plagued by hard plastics and finicky technology brought down what could have been a better all-around car. A high-performance Caliber SRT model offers 285 horsepower and a six-speed manual transmission, but it was somewhat expensive and Edmunds called it "underwhelming."
Fuel efficiency, according to the EPA for the later CVT-transmission models, is 22 city and 27 highway mpg, a number significantly below most compact cars from the same time period of the Caliber's size and price point.