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2024 Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD - Quick and Capable

We tried out the 2024 Dodge Hornet (without the plug-in option) and found that it is a true Dodge.

When I think of Dodge, I think of quick and capable cars. Like the Charger and Challenger. If you also hold this view, then you may like the 2024 Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD. This $40,485 vehicle puts performance first, like many other Dodge products.

2024 Dodge Hornet GT interiorQuick Off the Line, and When You Want to Play
The 2024 Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD has a powerful turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to a transmission with actual gears. That makes it very unusual in this segment, which has defaulted to blah engines and boring CVTs. The engine feels peppy. From a dead stop, you can scoot quite quickly ahead in traffic. If you need a boost of power while underway, the Hornet GT always delivers. Aside from the Ford Bronco Sport Badlands and Mazda CX-30 Turbo, there are few other vehicles in this segment so lively.

Related Review: 2023 Dodge Hornet GT Review: Dodge Is Finally Back in Small SUV With Italian Roots

Handling and Comfort In One Package
The Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD we tested came with 17-inch Goodyear Sport tires (they literally say Sport on the side in bold letters). They seemed well-matched to the personality of the vehicle. While it does have a bit of roll in corners, we liked the handling quite a bit. What really impressed us was that over potholes and road imperfections, the Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD seemed quite composed and comfortable. Maybe we should not be surprised. After all, the Challenger GT we drove a few years back was darn near a luxury vehicle in terms of ride quality. 

About the Price
If you feel that a bit over $40K before dealer Doc fees is too much in this category, you’d be right and also wrong. In 2019, anyone would chuckle if you told them the vehicles like this cost $40K. But thanks to multiple back-to-back years of compounding steep inflation, $40K is the new $30K. It’s not just a Dodge thing. Top trim Bronco Sports run $47K today. Our price of $40,485 includes the ridiculously high $1,595 Destination Charge and about $2,500 in color changes to the exterior that added the nice Blu Bayou paint and Blacktop adornments. 

It Isn’t Huge
If you like a subcompact vehicle, the Hornet will suit your tastes. Unlike the CX-30 and Bronco Sport, it feels its size, which is small. Inside, you notice it most. The whole car feels like it 5/6ths the size of a RAV4 or CR-V, which it probably is. 

Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD - Conclusion
We are glad there is still a brand that puts performance first. The Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD may be built by a Dutch company in Italy, but it sure feels like a bit of old-school Detroit is infused into its DNA. 

Images of 2024 Dodge Hornet GT Plus Blacktop AWD by John Goreham.

Story Note: We call the Hornet a Dodge, but the Monroney sticker also had Jeep on it, and FCA US LLC was in the fine print. 

John Goreham is an experienced New England Motor Press Association member and expert vehicle tester. John completed an engineering program with a focus on electric vehicles, followed by two decades of work in high-tech, biopharma, and the automotive supply chain before becoming a news contributor. In addition to his eleven years of work at Torque News, John has published thousands of articles and reviews at American news outlets. He is known for offering unfiltered opinions on vehicle topics. You can follow John on Twitter, and connect with him at Linkedin.