9 Best & Worst Dodge Avenger Years (With Facts & Stats)

The Avenger was produced from 1994 to 2000 as a coupe and then from 2007 to 2014 as a midsize sedan muscle car.

It’s no class leader but is an affordable option that has composed handling, a handsome exterior and a well-built interior.

In this article, we’ll examine the best and worst model years of the Avenger.

2011 Dodge Avenger

Here’s The Short Answer To What The Best And Worst Years For The Dodge Avenger Are:

The best Dodge Avenger model years are 2009, 2011, 2014, 2000, 1999, and 1998. The worst model years of the Avenger are 2008, 2013, and 2012. This is based on auto industry reviews, NHTSA statistics, reported problems, and consumer feedback.

What Are The Best Years For The Dodge Avenger?

2009 Dodge Avenger

The 2009 Avenger is smooth, quiet and stylish and was notably less problematic than many of the other model years.

It provides solid performance, above-average fuel efficiency, and a wide selection of standard driver assist features.

This midsize sedan comes in 3 trims: SE, SXT, and R/T.

The mid-range SXT is the most popular among the variants.

Compared to the entry-level SE trim, the midrange SXT comes with a larger set of wheels (17-inch alloy wheels), a rear spoiler, fog lights, audio controls on the steering wheel, stain-resistant cloth upholstery, and two additional speakers plus.

The 2009 Avenger has the following 3 engine choices:

A 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine (173 horsepower), a 2.7-liter V6 engine (186 horsepower), and a 3.5-liter V6 engine (235 horsepower).

The base 2.4-liter engine can reach up to 21 MPG for city driving, 30 MPG for highway driving, and 24 MPG for combined driving.

The midrange 2.7-liter V6 engine achieves up to 19 MPG for city driving, 27 MPG for highway driving, and 22 MPG for combined driving.

Lastly, the 3.5-liter V6 engine has an estimated fuel efficiency of 16 MPG for city driving, 27 MPG for highway driving, and 20 MPG for combined driving. 

  • Edmunds: 4.5 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.2 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 80 / 100

2009 Avenger, Edmunds review:

“I purchased my Avenger 2 months ago after a LONG search. I was a little worried about purchasing a Dodge but… Definitely no regrets! Great price. Avg 24 MPGs, nice smooth ride with lots of power even in my 4cyl engine. I find myself speeding a lot it’s so smooth. Lots of room in back seat. I have 3 boys ages 13, 15, and 8 and they all fit very comfortably. Big sized trunk…I’m routinely carrying 3 baseball bags, 4 folding chairs and 2 handled cooler with extra room left. Comfy front seats, LOVE the Sirus radio. And you cant miss the exterior looks! The Avenger is fierce looking…great style!”

2011 Dodge Avenger

The 2011 Avenger is a fantastic midsize sedan that scored impressive reviews from owners.

It has lots of standard features, a strong V6 engine, and a commendable balance of handling and ride. 

New to this model year are updated exterior stylings, a revamped interior with higher-quality materials, and added safety features. 

Standard safety features include anti-lock brakes with brake assist, active front head restraints, front-seat side airbags, hill start assist, stability control, traction control, and full-length side curtain airbags.  

The 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine can provide up to 21 MPG for city driving, 30 MPG for highway driving, and 24 MPG for combined driving.

The larger and more powerful 3.6-liter V6 engine can attain around 19 MPG for city driving, 29 MPG for highway driving, and 22 MPG for combined driving. 

  • Edmunds: 4.3 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.2 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2011 Avenger, Edmunds review:

“I bought my brand new R/T Avenger a few weeks ago and I love it! I test drove so many vehicles before this one and nothing else compared to it overall (Mustang, Camry, Altima, Impala, G6 etc.) i also used to have a 300 Touring which i didn’t like anywhere as much as I do this car. It drives great, has good inside space, great sound system…”

2014 Dodge Avenger

The 2014 Charger is the final model year of the lineup ever produced and it is also one of the more reliable models.

The discontinuation was attributed to several factors, including the restructuring of Chrysler (Dodge’s parent company) and changes in consumer preferences.

Regardless, this model year is one of the most coveted model years for its composed ride, great handling, and powerful V6 engine.

There are 3 trims to choose from: SE, SXT, and R/T.  

Fuel economy was quite good for its segment, with all 3 trim levels ranging between 22 and 24 MPG for combined driving.

The entry-level SE and midrange SXT is powered by a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine (173 horsepower) while the top-spec R/T trim is equipped with a 3.6-liter V6 engine (283 horsepower).  

  • Edmunds: 3.8 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.2 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 79 / 100

2014 Avenger, Edmunds review:

“You must buy this car with incentives to get a great deal. We paid $16K and got a great trade-in price. This car is great looking, fun to drive, not to bad on gas and gets some great comments. The 2.4L is fine for everyday driving but if you want to super acceleration opt for the V-6 with 283 HP…”

2000 Dodge Avenger

The 2000 Avenger combines American ingenuity, good styling choices, and an affordable price point.

It is an attractive luxury/sport coupe that boasts competent handling and adequate engine power. 

Despite its premium perception, this Avenger prioritizes practicality more than anything else.

The 2000 Avenger received revised cloth seats and larger wheels for the entry-level trim and standard power driver’s seat and leather upholstery for the high-end trim.

Owners can choose from only 2 trims: Base and ES. 

2 new colors were introduced for this model: Ice Silver and Ruby Red. 

These colors, in addition to 4 more options, are applicable to both trim levels. 

As for interior styling, owners can choose between 2 color schemes: Black/Tan and Black/Gray. 

Both variants are fitted with a 2.5-liter V6 engine (163 horsepower) paired to a 4-speed automatic transmission and a front-wheel-drive. 

  • Edmunds: 4.5 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.0 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2000 Avenger, Edmunds review:

“I have had this care now for 6 years and have had a great experience. I have had no major mechanical expense, just routine maintenance.”

1999 Dodge Avenger

The 1999 Avenger is stylish, commanding, inexpensive, and reliable.

It sports a sleek exterior design, a decent enough engine, and various standard safety features.

There are only 2 trim levels: Base and ES. 

The Base trim is powered by a 2-liter 4-cylinder engine (140 horsepower) paired to a 5-speed manual transmission.

The ES trim has an optional 2.5-liter V6 engine mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission, both variants are front-wheel drive.

Owners have praised this model year for its spacious interior and responsive handling.

Others complained about sluggish acceleration but were happy overall with the reliability and consistency of the engine. 

  • Edmunds: 4.6 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.0 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

1999 Avenger, Edmunds review:

“reliable engine with the right amount of TLC spacious inside comfortable seating. Acceleration a little on the sluggish but gets up to speed quickly handles corners superbly very quick steering response this car stays well planted on the pavement outstanding body design very handsome car and fun to drive”

1998 Dodge Avenger

The 1998 Avenger sports classic looks, a big back seat, and well-built interior fabrics.

It is known for its manufacturing quality, value, and great driving experience.

There are 2 trims to choose from: Base and ES.

The “ES” stands for Executive Sedan and is the sportier trim option.

While both trims are fitted with a standard 2-liter 4-cylinder engine (140 horsepower) mated to a 5-speed manual transmission, the ES trim can be fitted with an upgraded 2.5-liter V6 engine paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Fuel efficiency estimates are respectable. For models equipped with the standard engine, expect up to 19 MPG for city driving, 29 MPG for highway driving, and 23 MPG for combined driving.

Notable safety features include dual airbags, three-point seatbelts, child safety seat anchors, and side-impact protection. 

  • Edmunds: 4.4 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.0 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

1998 Avenger, Edmunds review:

1998 Dodge Avenger

Consumer Scores For Best Dodge Avenger Years

Model YearEdmunds
Consumer Rating
Kelley Blue Book
Consumer Rating
JD Power
Consumer Rating
2009 Dodge Avenger4.5 / 5.04.2 / 5.080 / 100
2011 Dodge Avenger4.3 / 5.04.2 / 5.0NA
2014 Dodge Avenger3.8 / 5.04.2 / 5.079 / 100
2000 Dodge Avenger4.5 / 5.04.0 / 5.0NA
1999 Dodge Avenger4.6 / 5.04.0 / 5.0NA
1998 Dodge Avenger4.4 / 5.04.0 / 5.0NA

Related: How Long Do Dodge Avengers Last? (12 Important Facts)

What Are The Worst Years For The Dodge Avenger?

2008 Dodge Avenger

The 2008 Avenger is the worst model year produced according to NHTSA data and online reports, we advise you to steer clear.

This model was plagued by various issues, most prominently transmission issues.

Many complaints were related to the transmission getting stuck in park and despite a widespread recall to repair the shift interlock spring a number of owners still experience problems.

Here’s one owner’s complaint:

“Car shuts off when put in drive, if not it will jerk really hard and shut off. It’s as if the transmission locks up and it cuts the car off. Almost caused an accident a couple of times . I do not feel safe driving the car.”

There were also a huge number of complaints due to electronic throttle control issues.

Owners reported that whilst driving their vehicle would decelerate, warning lights would appear on the dash and the car would enter limp mode.

Another very common issue with the 2008 Avenger is alternator failure, as described by one owner below on CarComplaints.com:

“I bought this car brand new in 2008. It has been the worst car, ever! Tonight, I drove home from work, stopped by the store, when I came out my car was just dead. I am 99% sure it is going to be alternator especially after reading all of these complaints. I will NEVER buy another Dodge or any Chrysler product.”

The 2008 Avenger had a total of 423 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,132 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Gear shift module locked up
  • Engine stalls/shuts down while driving
  • Alternator failed
  • Takata recall
2008 Dodge Avenger

2013 Dodge Avenger

The 2013 Avenger received a very high number of complaints, mostly surrounding the airbag system and engine.

A frequently reported issue for this model year is unexpected headrest restraint deployment.

Most vehicles are fitted with a headrest restraint that pops open during accidents or collisions to mitigate the effects of whiplash.

Here is what some owners had to say:

“I was sitting in the parking lot of a grocery store when the active head restraint exploded on the passenger side headrest. My vehicle was not moving and there was no contact with any other vehicle or object..”

“While driving approximately 30-35 mph on a city street the front passenger headrest airbag had went off with passenger in the seat. There was no accident involved to cause the airbag to deploy.”

Random vehicle stalling was a common occurrence for this model year as well.

Owners reported the car would shut down whilst driving, engine warnings lights would come on, the hood would shake and a knocking sound would come from the engine.

Problems with the heating were also widely reported, owners have stated that when the heater is on it blows hot on the driver’s side and cold on the passenger side.

The 2013 Avenger had a total of 105 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 793 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • No heat on passenger side
  • Noisy brakes
  • TIPM (totally integrated power module) going bad
  • Vehicle will not start

2012 Dodge Avenger

The 2012 Avenger was another highly complained-about model.

Owners of this model year reported both airbag deployment failure following a collision and airbag deployment without any impact.

One of the most common complaints is that the heater does not work properly, as described by one owner below:

“While either in motion or while driving, no heated air exits the passenger side of the windshield defroster, nor the passenger window defrost, lower and center console vents. Heated air only exits the driver’s side windshield and driver’s side dash vents. Problem persists through all cabin air modes, and circulations. This safety issue affects visibility and passenger safety by failing to defrost/defog windows and keeping cabin temperatures near or below freezing during cold weather (blowing cold air into the cabin).”

Owners reported a variety of electrical issues including windshield wiper failure, and car horn honking without prompt.

The 2012 Avenger had a total of 164 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 783 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Heater not working properly
  • Stuck in first gear
  • Engine stalls/shuts down while driving

Related: How Long Do Dodge Chargers Last? (Solved & Explained)

What Years Have The Most Complaints?

Model YearComplaints
2014 Dodge Avenger 66314
2013 Dodge Avenger 105793
2012 Dodge Avenger 164783
2011 Dodge Avenger 66305
2010 Dodge Avenger 47232
2009 Dodge Avenger 3796
2008 Dodge Avenger 4231,132
2000 Dodge Avenger 222
1999 Dodge Avenger 1162
1998 Dodge Avenger 158
1997 Dodge Avenger 583
1996 Dodge Avenger 7157

What Problems Do Dodge Avenger Have?

  • Heater not working properly
  • Gear shift module locked up
  • No heat on passenger side
  • Engine stalls/shuts down while driving
  • Alternator failed
  • Stuck in first gear
  • Noisy brakes
  • TIPM (totally integrated power module) going bad
  • Vehicle will not start
  • Multiple electrical issues
  • Brakes squeak
  • Water leaking into interior

Related: 12 Most Common Dodge Avenger Problems (Explained)

What Are The Best Alternatives To The Dodge Avenger?

Make & ModelScoreMSRPFuel Economy (MPG)
Honda Accord8.4$27,295 – $29,610City: 29 /Highway: 37
Kia K58.3$25,290 – $31,690City: 24 – 27 /Highway: 32 – 37
Toyota Camry8.2$26,220 – $36,645City: 22 – 28 /Highway: 31 – 39
Hyundai Sonata7.9$24,950 – $34,975City: 23 – 28 /Highway: 33 – 38 
Subaru Legacy7.8$24,395 – $37,695City: 23 – 27 /Highway: 31 – 35
Nissan Altima7.4$25,290 – $34,990City: 25 – 27 /Highway: 34 – 39
Volkswagen Passat7.4$27,575 – $30,575City: 24 /Highway: 36
Chevrolet Malibu7.0$25,000 – $31,500City: 22 – 29 /Highway: 33 – 36

Source: cars.usnews.com, edmunds.com

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  • Ian Sawyer

    Growing up with a father who was a mechanic I had an appreciation for cars and motorcycles from an early age. I shared my first bike with my brother that had little more than a 40cc engine but it opened up a world of excitement for me, I was hooked. As I grew older I progressed onto bigger bikes and...