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Discussion Starter #1
So I had been looking for the perfect car for several months - even going as far as creating a spreadsheet to keep track of all the cars that could be modded, got good gas mileage, could fit my wife and 2 kids, and look BAD ASS. My search ended when I found my sweet new girlfriend, Dartlene! (or as my children refer to her as Orangina [long i sound]) I bought her with 52K miles, and she already had some mods done!

These are the original listing pics:
front angled.jpg
rear angled 2.jpg
front.jpg
interior.jpg
badges.jpg
rear.jpg
 

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I am not a fan of a lighter color interior, but that looks amazing! Good find and have fun with it.
 

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I am not a fan of a lighter color interior, but that looks amazing! Good find and have fun with it.

I like it more than mine, beige. I'm slowly converting it to black. If I had that color I'd probably leave it. But I would get some seat covers for it, when I installed the short shifter I accidentally got a little grease on the seat and it was a real nightmare getting that out.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
So now, let's go back in time...back to the production of this mean little bitch! I used my time machine (or at least some clever internet detective skills) and found her on another Dart forum, the owner called her Orange Crush. She came off the line in Sept of 2012 and was purchased in January 2013. Color was the same, but no stripe, no black painted wheels and no spoiler: my dart orignal factory.jpg
my dart orignal factory back.jpg
my dart original side factory.jpg
orig door.jpg orig hood.jpg
Yeah - I do love the interior - I'm not a big fan of leather seats - my butt sweats too much and I stick to it! These look great and are super comfortable. Yeah - these are hard to get dark stains out! Grease on these bad boys would not be good!
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Next up, was a new spoiler. This bad boy was purchased of of ebay, or so I'm told! Who cares of it's a front wheel drive? Still looks good to me!
orig spoiler off.jpg
orig spoiler.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Still too STOCK! Argh! Now it's time to paint the stock wheels! Orange and Black! Yes! The black somehow makes her more angry...
orig w black wheels.jpg

The wheels could have been painted a little bit better, but it'll do for now. The calipers were painted orange, which I wouldn't have thought of at first, but it really makes them stand out! They were painted while still on the car, so also not perfect. I can still see traces of orange paint on the discs - not to worry, next time the wheels are off to change brakes, they will be re painted. I already found Bright Orange Engine and Brake Paint at Autozone. I originally purchased from Amazon, but had to return that can, as it was tomato red, not orange at all.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Now, for the thing that helped sell this car to me, and JUMP OUT of all the other 5 million cars I had been staring at online: Racing Stripes. This increases HP by AT LEAST 20-30! No, it't true, I swear! Ok, so maybe not a deal maker, but it sure as hell looks cool!
orig stripe.jpg
orig strip & tint.jpg
Limo tint was added on the back and side windows - The front tint was damaged when I bought it, so they knocked a little off and I had it redone. Maximum legality in Chicago - 35% driver sides and 35% stripe on front window. I'm not into asking for trouble with Johnny Law!

The lettering was removed by the time it hit the sales lot - I found out it was purchased by the dealer through an auction, and I also found the entire vehicle maintenance history, including oil changes and repairs. It DID have a faulty clutch, master and slave cylinder which were replaced. Now I'm good for another 100,000 miles!
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Now under my rule - replaced tint, washed & rolled into Chicago!
[ 20150306_133013.jpg
rear cam.jpg
Drove the whole way in reverse, so I could stare at the huge backup camera.
Current config:
2013 Dodge Dart SXT - Header Orange - Aero Package
Dual Exhaust - 17 inch rims
Front and Back Sway Bars
1.4 turbo motor 6 - Speed Trans
Race Track Tail lights
8.5 inch display
Rear view camera
Blacked out tinted windows
Spoiler
 

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You are from chicago? Car looks good.

You need to check out chicagolanddarts and dartsofillinois on facebook. Two good groups for local peeps.
 

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So, what were the original pics of?. I'm confused. Because the 2013 SXT Rallye didn't come without black headlights and weren't available with leather interior. That car is 1 of 1 and extremely rare.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
So, what were the original pics of?. I'm confused. Because the 2013 SXT Rallye didn't come without black headlights and weren't available with leather interior. That car is 1 of 1 and extremely rare.
Good catch Viperman96 (i've seen your threads and I love your car BTW.) It was not actually a Rallye - the (Used Car Kia) dealership thought it was a Rallye because of the color and stripe, I think, but I've looked into the previous owner's purchase ticket and found it was an SXT with the Aero package. The interior is light grey cloth, not leather. The "original pics" were what the car looked like before I bought it, I'm guessing near the purchase date back in Jan of 2013.

It would be crazy if it were some sort of RARE Dart, but I don't think so. I believe it was an SXT with all of the available upgrades added, but never actually considered a Rallye. I have since replaced the headlights with Eagle Eye black bezeled version, but I haven't gotten to that part of the story, yet :D

I was just commenting on leather seats in general, not these specifically - Sorry to be misleading.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
First up, for me, is fixing the factory audio system. I have never known much about cars, but I have always installed third party audio systems. I am a sound engineer, so I'm very picky about audio, and have very specific audio needs. It is often important to check mixes in the car, and compare with other audio reference material. I did a bit of analysis with the audio, both with a pink noise generator and frequency analyzer and my old school ears. The factory limiter in the audio path sucks, but it can work with proper gain staging and third party solutions.
20150307_091243.jpg
Here is the trunk installation. These are the wires running along the driver side, under the doors. They run into the two fuse blocks, and the amp power goes directly to the battery (fused.)
20150307_091255.jpg
The wires were brought into the back seat, then sent up to the front, where they were spliced together with the factory speaker cable. This line includes direct power for the power amplifier, remote 12v switching cable, subwoofer remote control, & speaker sends. The large, heavy stuff was all mounted to the top of the trunk, under the back window. I used self tapping screws and made sure everything is very tight and solid, as the subwoofer will be vibrating right near there. In the picture, you can see the power amplifier, audio crossover & Speaker to line level converter.
20150307_102412.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I tucked away the wires as tightly as possible, as my children can be Ultra-Massive-Destructoids, and anything hanging, dangling, or lying about is subject to their wrath. I didn't want any chance of having to do this again because of carelessness, or because a Nerf gun battle broke out and the trunk was used for cover...

20150307_134450.jpg
20150307_233100.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
I used a distribution block for power, since the amplifier and the crossover had different power requirements. The crossover has a remote control function - this is used for the subwoofer, so that may be adjusted on the fly, without use of the radio or other controls.
20150307_233106.jpg
Subwoofer Control:
subwoofer control.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #17
After the full installation, I was rockin' for about two weeks - then all of a sudden, no bass! Uh oh - the amplifier i had used was from a previous installation, so it already had a bunch of hours on it. Needless to say, the power transformer blew on it - It wasn't worth the time for me to fix it, due to it's power and age, so I replaced it with a Kicker DX.500. This is a mono, 500 watt power amplifier specifically designed for this purpose. I added a 0/1 Awg ground line for power in the trunk when I replaced the unit.
20150512_191147.jpg
From the driver seat, I have control of the EQ and subwoofer controls, and from the trunk, I can alter the crossover frequency, bass boost & output gain. The Polk speakers compliment the Kicker 3.5" in the front dash, as the Kicker full range 6x9 speakers are a bit too "hyped" for my taste. In other words, they boost the high frequencies in our vehicles 3-5 dB at 8K and higher. The Polks have always sounded smoother to me, and the addition on the subwoofer and dash speakers give it a huge sound - not a flat frequency curve, but a pleasantly pleasing one.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
My next purchase was a very simple install - The Madness Go Pedal:
madness go pedal.jpg

After using it for several weeks - it is quite the improvement, and if you want to remind yourself, turn it off for a while! Now I get it, it's not improving HP, and it's not a tune, but it does make it fun to drive. I will be getting the tune eventually, so this may stay or go. But for now, it is quite the improvement in fuel economy, too. I started out with the economy mode, and it sure make millions of starts and stops in tight Chicago traffic easier. It is a slower, smoother start in first gear and promotes more eco-type driving.

With the middle mode selected, I surprisingly got better MPG than the stock as well. I had it on for a few commutes into the city, and it was 5 mpg higher than the trips without it. I'm sure it influences my driving, so It's not a "magic pedal" - but it did what I wanted it to do! All of my non-cosmetic mods are hopefully going to contribute to better mileage. The red (Sport) mode is best for chasing neighborhood animals and scaring small children! Seriously though, whoa - it for sure kills the MPG - so I don't use it often, but it is fun to be able to kick it on when I want to impress my wife.

Actually, that is a complete lie. She could care less. Lol.

My nephew and my two sons, however, now think I'm in up to be in the next Fast & Furious movie! I'll never have that layer of rubber back on these tires...
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Next up... one of my favorite mods: Eibach Pro Lowering Springs. Couldn't do the sport, being all Dukes-of-Hazard in Chi-town, but these are great. In fact, I didn't mention it to my wife, and one day we were driving home and I took a left turn pretty quick. She got all excited and said, "Wow, this new car really feels like it sticks to the road when you turn!" I just grinned:big smile: Then I told her.
20150312_114219_zpsk8pidaro.jpg
 

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After the full installation, I was rockin' for about two weeks - then all of a sudden, no bass! Uh oh - the amplifier i had used was from a previous installation, so it already had a bunch of hours on it. Needless to say, the power transformer blew on it - It wasn't worth the time for me to fix it, due to it's power and age, so I replaced it with a Kicker DX.500. This is a mono, 500 watt power amplifier specifically designed for this purpose. I added a 0/1 Awg ground line for power in the trunk when I replaced the unit.
View attachment 49912
From the driver seat, I have control of the EQ and subwoofer controls, and from the trunk, I can alter the crossover frequency, bass boost & output gain. The Polk speakers compliment the Kicker 3.5" in the front dash, as the Kicker full range 6x9 speakers are a bit too "hyped" for my taste. In other words, they boost the high frequencies in our vehicles 3-5 dB at 8K and higher. The Polks have always sounded smoother to me, and the addition on the subwoofer and dash speakers give it a huge sound - not a flat frequency curve, but a pleasantly pleasing one.
You might not want to mount your amps like that. When amps are mounted upside down...the heat rises into the board instead of through the heat sinks and through the top. This could be a factor why your previous amp took a crap on you. Just food for thought. I'm currently building an amp rack for mine so I can mount it upright but still attach it to the decklid.
 
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