june 5, 2007

When I hear the word "nitro", I think of sleek, fast, and quick.  I sure as hell don't think of some ugly boxy SUV.  Someone at Dodge has a really sick sense of humor for naming the above pictured SUV "Nitro".  And just how nitro is the Nitro?
Beneath the squarish sheet metal, the Nitro has Jeep-sourced components that include a 210-hp, 3.7-liter V6 and live rear axle. That setup never impressed us with its performance or ride in the Liberty, and it doesn't work better here. It only takes a few miles of driving to uncover flaws, with the most obvious being the relentlessly noisy engine and a stiff, bumpy ride. On the highway the ride becomes floaty. Engine power is adequate, but a driver must prod it to keep up the pace. Vague steering and notable body lean leaves the handling less than agile.

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