1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue
1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue. Click image to enlarge

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By Jeff Burry

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Dodge Stealth, 1991-2996

The word Dodge conjures up images of big-block, rear-wheel drive vehicles. You know, the ones where they stuff a 426 Hemi into an “E” body vehicle such as the Dodge Challenger. These cars were built to go fast and to cover distance in a straight line very quickly.

Some twenty years after those vehicles started disappearing from North American roadways, the folks at Chrysler Corporation produced and sold a vehicle badged the Dodge Stealth. The name itself suggests a combination of power and sleekness. Might this suggest the 90’s version of a revived muscle car?

The Dodge Stealth was sold in North America between 1991 and 1996 by Chrysler dealers throughout Canada and the United States. A total of 63,296 units were produced with approximately ten per cent of those making their way into Canadian showrooms.

A partnership had been formed in the early 1990’s with Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors to produce a sibling to its already successful 3000GT, which had been introduced to the buying public one year earlier. Both vehicles shared numerous interior and exterior styling traits, including a “low slung” front end and low belt-line.

1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue
1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue. Click image to enlarge

In its introductory year, the Dodge Stealth was chosen to be the pace car for the Indianapolis 500 race. However, due to its ties to Mitsubishi, the United Auto Workers gave it a thumbs down, feeling that a North American vehicle ought to be the pace vehicle. As a substitute, the Dodge Viper replaced the Stealth as the official pace car for the 1991 Indianapolis 500.

The Dodge Stealth came in four trim variants, ranging from a base model, ES, R/T, and a heart-pounding R/T Twin Turbo. Base models were powered by a 3.0-litre V6 producing 165 hp and 185 pound-feet of torque. Styling was slick, but the vehicle was seriously underpowered for one weighing almost 1,724 kilograms, or about 3,800 pounds.

Opting for either the ES or RT models would provide one with performance that was more in keeping with the looks of the vehicle. Both versions came standard with a 24-valve DOHC (double overhead cam) engine producing 222 hp and 201 pound-feet of torque – definitely a step in the right direction!

1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue
1992 Dodge Stealth; photo by Richard Rodrigue. Click image to enlarge

For those of us preferring a more nail-biting experience, Chrysler did not disappoint. A check mark placed on the build sheet for a R/T Twin Turbo version would deliver to you, compliments of Chrysler, a Stealth producing 300-hp and 307 pound-feet of torque. This particular model would cover zero to 100 km/h in just over five seconds.

Covering that distance was further assisted by an all-wheel drive system combined with a five-speed standard transmission. Other versions of the Dodge Stealth could be acquired with an optional four-speed automatic, but not the R/T Twin Turbo. (Please note that later editions of the Twin Turbo model produced 320 hp with the powerplant being matched to a six-speed standard transmission.)

The three other models – the base, ES and RT versions, all were manufactured with only front-wheel drive systems. The all-wheel drive system was exclusively reserved for the Twin Turbo-charged model.

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