5k: What’s Your Spirit Animal? 1991 Dodge Spirit R/T

From 1991 through 1996 Dodge built a few boat loads of an abysmal family sedan on a stretched version of the Chrysler K-car, and badged it as the Dodge Spirit.  Most have mercifully been crushed into compact cubes for a trip to China to be recycled into the metal containers that hold the ass gaskets (Texas t-shirt, North Hollywood horse collar, paper cowboy hat, baloney in a butt-seat sandwich…whatever those things are called) above the toilet in a public restroom.  However, there was one particular flavor of the Spirit that is actually worth sparing from the jaw of the crusher — the limited production (1208 built) ’91-’92 R/T.  Find this 1991 Dodge Spirit R/T offered for $4,000 in St Louis, MO via craigslist.

Various internet sources claim the Spirit R/T was the quickest 4-door sedan in the world (or US built sedan) at the time of manufacture, but at 5.8 seconds to 60mph and 14.5 in the race to 1320 ft, it was marginally slower than the e34 M5.  It was however, a blisteringly fast car for a front-wheel-drive 4-cylinder family car from Detroit with an $18k MSRP. 

The R/T is powered by a Chrysler Turbo III engine with a 16-valve cylinder head designed by Lotus and boosted by a Garrett turbo to produce 224 horsepower and 217 ft-lbs of torque.  The only transmission available was a 5-speed manual gearbox that put the power to one of the front wheels.  At 2,900 lb curb weight the Spirit R/T isn’t a heavy weight and should be decent in the turns for its choice of drive wheels. 

See another low production turbocharged weirdo from the past? Send it here: tips@dailyturismo.com