Posted on July 4th 2014
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2015 Charger SRT8 Hellcat 1

As outlined in Dodge’s most recent 5 year plan – we now know for sure that a 707 horsepower Hellcat powered Dodge Charger is on the way and it has been caught here during final testing.  The 2015 Dodge Charger SRT8 Hellcat will follow the 2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat to production by a few months.

Another cool bit of information – the Charger Hellcat will be the worlds most powerful sedan!

Posted on May 27th 2014
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2015 dodge charger SRT8 Hellcat

Dodge enjoys touting the fact that the Dodge Charger has no competition, and they’re right.  The only car it really gets cross shopped against is the Dodge Challenger but aside from that there is really nothing else – and Dodge is very proud of that statistic.

Right from the 300 HP Charger V6 to the 370 HP Charger R/T and 470 HP Charger SRT there are no direct competitors to the car.  Some will say the 415 HP Chevy SS is a competitor, but its low volume dictates that any cross shopping is negligible, if any at all.

From a nuts and bolts standpoint its only directly “relatable” competition comes from Germany in form of the Mercedes Benz E class and BMW 5-series.  V6′s, V8′s and super performing  high end AMG and M versions packing over 500 HP.

With the Hellcat Charger quickly on the way to showrooms some are already pondering how it’ll do against the German super E-segment sedans which include the BMW M5, Mercedes Benz E63 AMG-S and Audi RS7.

2014 BMW M5 – 575 HP

2014 E63 AMG-S – 577 HP

2014 Audi RS7 – 560 HP

It’s unlikely even the Charger Hellcat will get cross shopped against that trio but since Dodge and SRT have already confirmed that the Hellcat engine will produce at least 600 HP we can already see a clear winner – unless the Germans bump their power ratings for 2015.

The upcoming Cadillac CTS-V has potential to knock the Charger off the top off the heap as 600 HP is rumored for it as well, but like the Charger final numbers haven’t been released yet.

Gotta love a good horsepower war!

 

Posted on May 14th 2014
1 Comment »
2018-Chrysler-300

FWD 2004 Chrysler 300M

No I don’t have any secret intel that says the next generation Chrysler 300 is headed for front wheel drive, but I do have some eerily bold facts that suggest this may be the case.

Fact #1 – The Chrysler 300 SRT is to be phased out soon.  We all knew about it after SRT was announced to become a part of Dodge again and the apparent lackluster 300 SRT sales were put under a spotlight.  The Detroit News soon after reported that the car wasn’t long for this world (but the Grand Cherokee SRT was).

 

Fact #2 – During the post 5-year FCA plan news conference, Sergio Marchionne was asked by Automobile Magazines Todd Lassa if the RWD LX vehicles would eventually be underpinned by Alfa Romeo  rear-drive platform architectures for the next generation.  Sergio said that its possible for the Charger and Challenger “with all the Alfa bits removed” but shook his head and said “not the Chrysler though”.

 

With Dodge now being solidified as a performance brand and Chrysler as a volume brand to compete against Ford, Honda and Toyota, it doesn’t leave much room for a large rear wheel drive Chrysler 300 anymore.  FCA has also been busy removing vehicles that compete against other vehicles in the portfolio.  I assume you’ve already heard about Dodge losing the Grand Caravan, well, the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger compete against each other in similar fashion.  Not only do similar vehicles compete against each other on the same showroom floor, for every dollar they save in joint development costs they lose when they end up marketing both separately at millions a piece for the same sales numbers that one could do, at half the marketing expenditure.

Ask GM how this worked out for them back when Pontiac, Chevrolet, Oldsmobile and Buick were all shilling the same cars with slight changes – Pontiac and Olds aren’t even here to talk about it.

Further, if Chrysler is gunning for Ford, Chevy and Toyota they will need a large front wheel drive car to properly compete against them.  A new era 300M could cause havoc for the Ford Taurus, Toyota Avalon and Chevrolet Impala, all while directing all RWD buyers to the Dodge Charger, instead of confusing them with a 300C.

Time will tell, and if they do I vote to retire the 300C name and bring back the (FWD) 300M.

Posted on April 16th 2014
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Dodge Debuts New 2015 Challenger at 2014 New York Auto Show:

Now Offers 485 Best-in-class Horsepower, Track-ready All-new 6.4-liter Scat Pack Model, 392 HEMI® Scat Pack Shaker, All-new Interior and Segment-first Standard TorqueFlite Eight-speed Automatic Transmission.

New for 2015 Dodge Challenger Scat Pack 6.4-liter HEMI® V-8 punches out an estimated 485 best-in-class horsepower and 475 lb.-ft. of torque via a six-speed manual or new TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission, Brembo brakes and 20-by-9-inch aluminum wheels.

New 392 HEMI Scat Pack Shaker combines the ultimate combination of power and heritage cues with a functional Shaker hood 1971-inspired design, both inside and out, features refined exterior styling updates and heritage muscle-car appearance with new split grille, more pronounced and functional power bulge hood, LED halo headlamps and LED tail lamps.

All-new interior includes 1971-inspired high-sill center console and driver-focused instrument panel, aluminum bezels and 14 interior color and trim options, including throwback Houndstooth premium cloth, Radar Red, or Pearl and Alcantara suede and leather high-performance seats Segment-first eight-speed automatic transmission delivers world-class precision and fuel efficiency, along with Sport mode and paddle-shifting capabilities for enhanced performance and an improvement in fuel economy

Significant new technology upgrades feature all-new class-exclusive 8.4-inch touchscreen.media center with Uconnect Access system, new class-exclusive 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) customizable cluster display, electronic shifter and Keyless Enter ‗n Go with push-button start across all models.

o New electric power steering (EPS) now provides three driver-selectable steering modes: Normal, Comfort and Sport
o All-new cast-aluminum axle housing reduces weight
o Updated suspension – Super Track Pak now available on all models
o Standard Sport mode adjusts throttle, transmission and steering performance
o All-new Dodge Performance Pages provide configurable drive modes
o New launch control improves offline acceleration performance
o Available Brembo four-piston high-performance brakes reduce stopping distance
o Electronic shifter functions, such as a linkage shifter, provides visual and physicalfeedback of gear position

Posted on April 16th 2014
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- 5-speed auto officially GONE and replaced with the ZF 8-speed across the board

- 5.7L Hemi still producing same power as 2014 models, 370 HP / 395 TQ

- Same base 292 HP 3.6L V6 as 2014 but 300 HP Rallye version now available