By on September 3, 2009

Welcome to the most recent addition to our team: Roman Mica. Mr. Mica is a veteran journalist with pistonhead proclivities. He’s fully committed to telling the truth about cars; so enjoy his contributions while he can still get press cars. I joke. A bit. Anyway, with our limited editorial budget, we’ll be linking to Mr. M’s website tflcar.com. Every damn time. Both here in the text, and in the linkage area. So get used to it and the most excellent videography provided by Roman’s twelve-year-old son. BTW, why would the Challenger be pissed off that it has a 425hp engine? Just sayin’ . . . Hey, how about we send Baruth over to give Roman a little driving lesson?

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30 Comments on “TTAC Does Video: Challenger SRT8 Review...”


  • avatar
    seabrjim

    That takoff seemed “grabby”. Is this a posi or traction control?

  • avatar

    I think that going forward these can count as the “positive post of the day.” At least I’m not detecting much TTAC flava in this review.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Did he say $44,000???

  • avatar

    Here’s a good unbiased review.

    http://www.epinions.com/review/2008_Dodge_Challenger/content_461382913668

  • avatar
    maniceightball

    I liked the review — it was straightforward and honest. There’s no shortage of gushing video pseudo-reviews on sites like Streetfire, so in that context, bring on the TTAC video!

  • avatar
    Jeff Puthuff

    Here is Roman’s video of the burnout with traction control disabled:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dYEx67JE7eA&

  • avatar
    bucksnort

    $44k, 425hp, 5.5 sec’s 0-60? What kind of a muscle car guy would not pay this much for something this slow?

  • avatar
    tauronmaikar

    How did they manage a pathetic 5.5 sec to sixty with 425HP?? They seem to be breaking the laws of physics, in the wrong direction.

  • avatar
    CyCarConsulting

    I’ll pass. I can buy an original 70 R/T for $50,000 that won’t depreciate or be this slow.

  • avatar
    Vorenus

    I like this format, Mr. Mica.
    A review every once in a while by video is cool. The captions were a pretty worthwhile addition (giving specs and whatnot).

    It would’ve been nice to hear about any deficiencies that the car has, if any. Also, how many stars you’d give it on TTAC’s rating scale, plus your justification, would’ve been cool as well.

    All in all, nice job.

  • avatar
    rochskier

    Uh, other testers have managed 5.5s 0-60 times in the R/T…they’ve gotten 4.8s out of the SRT-8.

    Not trying to defend the excessive portliness of this car, but something seems amiss with the reported 5.5s time.

    It’s sad that the excellent HEMI-badged V8s are stuck in such weighty cars and that Chrysler made the mistake of introducing so many retro-mod muscle cars during a period of such high gas prices. The LX/LC cars would approach the sublime if they could get 300-500 lbs. out of these things, install more direct steering, and subbed in stiffer springs.

  • avatar
    Commando

    I’m going to let everyone in on a secret.
    Knowing the right channels to select, you can buy a new 430 hp Vette for less than a Challenger.

    And guess which will depreciate less?

  • avatar
    ktm

    The autos have 3.06 gears and the manuals have a 3.91. There is more to speed and quickness than simply horsepower and weight.

  • avatar

    As much as I tried I could not get a faster 0-60 time. With the traction control disabled the car just burned the rear tires in a useless puff of smoke with little forward motion.

    With traction control engaged, the car would leap forward only to have the electronics put a stop to all of the fun before the rear wheels spun. It would bog down as the throttle was cut and the wheels hooked up for a crucial half second or so.

    Funny Thing: My tester from the local press fleet had had the PCM replaced (the car’s computer brain). Don’t know why. I’m still waiting to hear back from Chrysler.

  • avatar
    CyCarConsulting

    On a 4 barrel, that would be one adjustment screw.

  • avatar
    onerareviper

    Commando,

    At least to this point, you are wrong. Looking at the NATIONAL average at DEALER ONLY Manheim auctions (ie – true wholesale), 40 2008 Corvettes sold. Sale prices ranged from $29,800 – $37,700, with $33,700 being the average. Looking at the 2008 Challenger STR8′s, 11 sold. Sale prices ranged from $35,000 – $39,800, with $37,450 being the average. These numbers don’t lie. Will this trend continue? Who knows, but I suspect the SRT8 will hold its value very well. As good as a base Vette.

  • avatar
    Loser

    Think I’d rather go with the faster Camaro and save almost $10,000 at the same time.

  • avatar
    cardeveloper

    SRT has three traction control setting, HAL in full no fun mode, part way off, which mostly monitoring side motion, and woohoo how much to replace these tires mode.

    This car needs to be rolled off the line. My best time in the charger RT was 5.28. So a 5.5 in a SRT is pretty bad. Also, Mercedes really really screwed up the adaptives in the car. I’ve never seen a car that needs the adaptives reset like this car does. If you pull the breakers and drove it like it was stolen, it will reward you with tons of fun. Diablo has a programmer that turns both the RT and SRT into a totally different car.

  • avatar
    z4eva

    Nice format changeup with some good visuals. Aim for the same nuanced – even nit-picky – criticism that makes TTAC reviews valuable and different from the mainstream guys. And play up the advantages of video in these reviews: for instance, show us how the gearbox is notchy by zooming in on the action during a gear change.

  • avatar
    rudiger

  • avatar
    Buckshot

    This the kind of car your grandfather used to dream about.
    Unfortunately, in our time it fits like a round peg in a square hole.
    Big,heavy,thirsty,expensive insurance etc.
    Atleast, it´s good looking.
    I wonder if Chrysler could remove some stuff and make it lighter?

  • avatar
    shaker

    Nice video – tells you every salient point, and gives a sense of the car’s dynamics as well.

    The only thing missing is good audio – not enough frequency response from the camera mike to enjoy the visceral appeal of the car – that V8 roar.

    A middle-aged woman that works at my company bought one of these recently – a black one that is simply stunning. I asked her “What that cost you… 35k?”

    She said, “Try 45k.”. I was stunned twice in 5 minutes.

    For a few more grand, I could have a V6 Camaro in the garage and a Genesis Coupe in the driveway, and one of those companies would be around to back the warranty.

    Jeez.

  • avatar
    rochskier

    @ Roman:

    Thanks for more detail about the review process. Shame the electric grandmas got in the way so much.

    @ cardeveloper:

    This car needs to be rolled off the line. My best time in the charger RT was 5.28. So a 5.5 in a SRT is pretty bad. Also, Mercedes really really screwed up the adaptives in the car. I’ve never seen a car that needs the adaptives reset like this car does. If you pull the breakers and drove it like it was stolen, it will reward you with tons of fun. Diablo has a programmer that turns both the RT and SRT into a totally different car.

    Couldn’t agree more. Very serious hardware is needed to compete with these cars from a roll. I am currently investigating the Diablosport Predator for my own R/T.

    @ shaker:

    The only thing missing is good audio – not enough frequency response from the camera mike to enjoy the visceral appeal of the car – that V8 roar.

    I honestly believe that the Mopars are the best sounding American V8s in production right now. Ford’s are also pretty good, but Chevy is a real let down.

    I’m gonna bet your coworker that dropped $45k never gets more than 5 over the posted limit.

    Shame that.

  • avatar
    shaker

    rochskier:
    “I’m gonna bet your coworker that dropped $45k never gets more than 5 over the posted limit.”

    Right about that — she calls it “Her Baby”.

    Oh, well.

  • avatar
    Airhen

    That canyon looks like Poudre Canyon… correct? If so that is where I use to drive the hell out of an ’84 GSL-SE RX-7. Those were the days…

    Also, I assume the two bodies in the trunk were because the trunks were at least that big enough in the original muscle cars. Look at an old Charger for example.

  • avatar
    red60r

    Could that 5.5-sec acceleration be explained by the Colorado location? Boulder is at about 5300 feet up, so there is about 15% less oxygen for that V8 to breathe. By the look of it, he was in Sunshine Canyon — Poudre Canyon is wider and has rocky sides and a bigger stream down the middle.

  • avatar
    Airhen

    ^red60r, I was thinking more on the west side of the Poudre Canyon, towards Indian Meadows? The wood fencing in the background just looks familiar like I’ve stopped there before?

  • avatar
    red60r

    @Airhen, we were both off the mark — I just noticed the Olde Stage Road intersection sign in the video, which puts him in Lefthand Canyon. Been there, done that.

  • avatar
    Airhen

    ^Thanks, yes I have been up that canyon as well. (lol)

  • avatar
    albee213

    There are so many factors that can go into 0-60 and 1/4 mile times. The SRT-8 will do 0-60 in 5 seconds so do not kid your selves with your 70′ Challenger R/T 440mag. If it was stock it would never do more that 6 seconds 0-60 unless you have the 426 HEMI. I have a Dodge Charger R/T and I can sqeeze out mid 5′s 0-60 and 13.7 1/4.


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