The Shelby GT500 remains a fast and compelling piece, but the Dodge Challenger is simply a better-sorted automobile, a 20th-century icon reborn with 21st-century sophistication and poise.
- After three decades Dodge came roaring back with a real muscle car.
- Only 6,400 were produced and they were sold before the first one arrived at the showroom.
- For its first year the new Challenger SRT8 was equipped with a 6.1-liter Hemi making 425 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque
Muscle Car Specifications
The 2008 Challenger came in one model only, the top of the line Challenger SRT8. Only 6,400 were produced and they were sold before the first one arrived at the showroom. The classic lines, great performance and nostalgia all came together in this modern remake of the Dodge classic. Ford may have reintroduced the classic lines of the early muscle cars with the handsome 2005 Mustang, but Dodge set the standard. This car captured the essence of the muscle car in a much more authentic way than the Mustang or even the yet to be introduced new 2009 Camaro. The 2008 Challenger just looked like a Muscle Car with it long hood and wide stance.
For its first year the new Challenger SRT8 was equipped with a 6.1-liter Hemi making 425 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, 20-inch forged-aluminum rims, Brembo four-piston discs front and rear, and a five-speed automatic transmission. Dodge priced it at $37,995 but most were sold at a premium.
The press was generally favorable and gave nods to the cars looks, performance and huge strides in fit and finish compared to its namesake from the 1970’s. Several did comparisons between the old Challengers with the new one winning in every category. The Mustang was another favorite for comparison tests.
Motor Trend did a comparison between the 2008 Challenger and the 2008 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. The Challenger came out on top: “It’s one of the closest comparo calls we’ve made of late, but the nod goes to the all-new Challenger from Dodge. The Shelby GT500 remains a fast and compelling piece, but the Dodge Challenger is simply a better-sorted automobile, a 20th-century icon reborn with 21st-century sophistication and poise. It’s also a remarkable value, its base price undercutting the Shelby’s by more than $4000 and the gap with options even wider.” Read the entire review here.
The 2009 Challenger will come in three models: a base model, an R/T and of course the SRT8.
|6.1 liter||6.1 liter||Fuel Injection||425 hp @ 6200 rpm||420 lb-ft @ 4800 rpm|
|0 to 60 mph||Quarter Mile||Engine||Source|
|4.5 sec||13.5 sec||370ci/425hp||Dodge Concept|
|4.7 sec||13.1 sec @ 108.3 mph||370ci/425hp||Motor Trend|
The Best Looking Muscle Car Of All Time?
The Dodge Challenger was one of the best looking cars in the 1970’s and the new Challenger is one of the best looking cars of today. The automotive press has been a little hard on the Challenger. They tend to describe it as too big, too slow with too little handling ability when compared to the new Mustangs and Camaros. True or not, the Challenger is the most aggressive looking of the bunch with more than enough power to humble most any car. If I could have any of the three, the Challenger is my first choice. It’s not even a real competition.
retro done right!!!
This is a sequel that outclasses the original. As good looking as the 1970 challenger was, gen II tops it. One day I WILL have one in my driveway!!!
The Retro Heavy Weight
The Challenger is probably the most aggressivly sexiest cars made in the past decade. Easily a retro done right; well sort of. They make a six cylinder(yuck), but at least the base V8s are defently contenders. The main problem with this car is where the horsepower dosn’t matter and handling and areodynamics are contributed. Case and point. The top speed of the 425 hemi is 163. Well with a more areodynamic car this would exceed 180mph. Well, thats not really a problem if you plan to cruise it, but they don’t make a convertible. If they did I would be in love with this car. But, they don’t.
The weight is an issue for a performance car. Dodge tried to just make power, that dosn’t help handling. This car goes for 32-40,000+, a Nissan Z is faster, handles better, has less power, better gas, and is cheaper. Thats what American cars are suppose to be able to say! This car goes against that. I still like this more then any Nissan, but its a flaw you can’t miss. The next problem is a poor mpg. I mean this car has to be the worst, worst new car to come out; and its all saved by style, and horsepower.
The interior is drab. Very lame for the price. If you have been in one, you know what I mean. Dash is far up, very odd for short or tall people. I am 5’10 and see it being ajustment really for anyone. However, after awhile I think you would get use to it; but, for this kind of money you shouldn’t have to.
This car is all show, and for alot of money you get go. For me I don’t know. I want a soft top!
Every time I see one it makes me mad. I can’t have one. With kids in college and teenagers at home I have no money for such a toy. Maybe I’ll get one in a few years after the kids get out of the house and depreciation takes its toll. Please, please someone buy one and put it in storage for a few years. I will gladly take it off your hands for about $20,000. Any takers? I thought not!