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- Highs Power and more power, spacious and comfortable interior, loads of standard features.
- Lows Reduced tire life, a few substandard trim pieces in the cabin, less track-day capability than some rivals.
- Verdict The Dodge Challenger SRT 392 and SRT Hellcat fill the need for speed, with added helpings of good handling and interior comfort.
These high-powered Dodge Challengers come in two flavors: bad-ass and more bad-ass. The stout SRT 392 packs a 485-hp Hemi V-8, and the notorious SRT Hellcat possesses a 707-hp supercharged Hemi V-8. Both funnel power to the rear wheels via either a standard six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic transmission. The Hellcat Widebody has a distinct appearance thanks to flared fenders and wider wheels and tires. These power-crazy Challengers provide exceptional comfort with a spacious cabin and plentiful standard features. While the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 and the Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 are more talented on a racetrack, the diabolical Dodges generate nostalgia and release our inner delinquency.
What's New for 2018?
The 2018 Hellcats receive restyled grilles and fender badges and newly illuminated Air-Catcher headlights with a Hellcat logo. The list of options now includes a Matte Vapor wheel finish, dual gunmetal stripes, Demonic Red Laguna seating, and a new red badge on the instrument panel. The SRT 392 is mostly unchanged, but the Brass Monkey 20-inch wheels are now optional. The new Hellcat Widebody features flared fenders and wider 20-inch wheels; an electrically assisted power-steering system replaces the hydraulic setup on the regular model. The lineup adds F8 Green and IndiGO Blue exterior colors.
- SRT 392: $51,890
- SRT Hellcat: $67,390
- SRT Hellcat Widebody: $73,390
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The mad scientists at the Dodge SRT laboratory have created a tire-smoking monster with the 707-hp Challenger SRT Hellcat. And while the SRT 392 has only 485 ponies, even it will reduce the rear rubber to clouds of billowing smoke faster than someone can ask, “That thing got a Hemi?” The new Hellcat Widebody is available with the same powertrains as its slimmer namesake. High horsepower ratings are supplemented by ample torque support. The SRT 392 generates 475 lb-ft from its 6.4-liter V-8, while the Hellcat’s supercharged 6.2-liter has 650. The standard six-speed manual transmission is plenty of fun, but the clutch pedal is stiff and the throws are long. The eight-speed automatic can snap off lightning-fast shifts and still provide a pleasurable cruising experience. Both Challengers feature SRT Performance Pages, which can be adjusted on the 8.4-inch touchscreen. Along with engine, transmission, steering, and traction-control alterations, the system can swap settings for the adaptive dampers among three modes: Auto, Sport, or Track. Although its handling feels sloppy in comparison with the racetrack-ready Camaro ZL1 and Shelby GT350, the Hellcat still doesn’t drive like a boat, and it is capable enough on twisting two-lanes to give you a thrill.
EPA fuel economy testing and reporting procedures have changed over time. For the latest and most accurate fuel economy numbers on current and older vehicles, we use the U.S. Department of Energy's fueleconomy.gov website. Under the heading "Find & Compare Cars" click on the "Compare Side-by-Side" tool to find the EPA ratings for the make, model, and year you're interested in.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The Challenger's interior was redesigned for the 2015 model year with a driver-centric layout, straightforward switchgear, and better materials. The SRT twins have standard leather finery, unique badging, and heated and ventilated front seats. Despite its roomy cabin, the plastics look low grade, and visibility to the rear is poor. The gauge cluster features a 7.0-inch display with white faces for the SRT 392 and red ones for the Hellcat. Every Challenger has broad front seats with decent lateral support. These comfy buckets will fit all body sizes and are great for long road trips. The Challenger’s considerable size allows for a big trunk that will swallow more carry-ons than its rivals. It isn’t as good at storing small items as the Shelby GT350, but it still offers a good amount of cubby space.
Infotainment and Connectivity
All SRT models come with Chrysler's Uconnect infotainment system that is simple to use and filled with features. These include navigation, a bumpin’ stereo, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. The standard 8.4-inch touchscreen is usefully large and features icons that can be easily selected with a finger, and there are volume and tuning knobs for quick stereo adjustments. The standard Harman/Kardon sound system pumps out 900 watts through 18 speakers. While the navigation responds quickly to inputs with a large onscreen keyboard, the map graphics look dated and cartoony.
Safety Features and Crash Test Ratings
Overall Safety Rating (NHTSA)
For more information about the Dodge Challenger SRT 392 / SRT Hellcat’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites.
Some older vehicles are still eligible for coverage under a manufacturer's Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) program. For more information visit our guide to every manufacturer's CPO program.