The Demon of 2007 was a lithe little roadster that looked primed and ready to take on the Miata, as well as the now-departed Solstice and Sky twins. The Demon was just under an inch shorter than the MX-5 and the Solstice, and it packed a 172 horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder that fell right between the Miata's 170 and the Solstice's 177 outputs. Dodge's estimated the curb weight, which for a concept is largely theoretical, also slotted between the two cars at 2600 pounds. That was about 150 more than the Mazda, and about 200 less than the Pontiac.
The pitch perfect specifications were presented in a crisp two-seat roadster wrapper. In many ways, it looked like a baby Viper, with a menacing crosshair grille, slanted headlights, and fat rear fenders. The Demon's line's were brutally simple and geometric, too. They didn't seem far removed from the first-generation Audi TT. The interior was also plain and simple. The key highlights were a horizontal aluminum accent that ran the width of the dash, echoed by an aluminum-covered center console. The instrument cluster was uncluttered, with just four gauges, and the only controls were some climate knobs, a double-DIN head unit, and a six-speed manual.
It turns out that the 2007 Demon didn't drive very well, though. You see, we actually drove this concept back in the day, and like many concepts, it still had a long way to go to be production ready. The gearbox would grind, the ride quality was terrible. However, the interior was roomy, and the engine sounded suitably grumbly, if a bit coarse.
At the time, we said Dodge should absolutely build the little roadster. In retrospect, the company probably made the right decision not to invest in the Demon. The small rear drive sports car segment was, and still is, an extremely niche market. It would have been a big investment for little return, something FCA today is trying to avoid. This is all before taking into account the fact that the recession was just around the corner.
In the end, we can't be too sad though. We didn't get this Demon, but we can get a great roadster from FCA in the form of the Miata-based 124 Spider. Plus, we do have this new, different Demon to look forward to. But if FCA wants to give the Demon treatment to some kind of super 124 Spider Abarth, we won't mind at all.