By on May 21, 2014

2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Supercharged

TTAC reader and Charger R/t owner Rich Murdocco pays tribute to the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat.

I’d say 6.2 liters is plenty of engine. Too much, in fact, especially if you’re trying to save the planet one bike lane at a time. It’s simply too much engine that consumes too many gallons of gasoline, which causes all sorts of problems down the road. Every time this 6.2-liter behemoth starts, I hope the driver, who is probably some man-child who never grew up, thinks of the plight of the polar bears. Shame on Fiat, the spunky Italian auto giant, who bought Chrysler, for creating this anachronism. Those peppery Italians have some nerve.

And then they added a supercharger.

The name of this testament to outdated American stubbornness? The Hellcat. This monster is named after the Grumman Hellcat, the naval fighter plane that helped secure America’s air superiority in the Pacific Theater during World War II. And what a name it is.

Husband: Honey, let’s go to the theater. I hear that “Waiting for Godot” is divine.

Wife: Oh darling, once I am done increasing our portfolio’s yield I’d be happy to.

Husband: Shall we take… the Hellcat?

Cue the wailing guitar solos and pyro, as every window in their mansion shatters at mere mention of the beast’s name.

That burble at start up; it stirs the soul. Listen, and picture volcanoes erupting, the earth quaking, and lightning piercing the blackest of skies.

What was once the realm of legends is now, somewhat approachable to us common men and women. For about $55,000, us mere mortals can pilot these rocket-sleds to oblivion. What an incredible time to be an auto enthusiast.

The Hellcat will compete in the Parthenon with a bevy of epic creatures – the Mustang, with Shelby’s coiled Cobra emblazoned on it, the Chevrolet ZL1. Each with enough horses in their stables combined to supply a glue factory for a decade. The bible got it wrong: There aren’t four horsemen to signal the end of times, but rather, the end will be brought by these three American-made chariots that run on the fossilized remains of our ancestors. How metal.

For perspective, in the 1990s, a McLaren F1, a million-dollar supercar had 627 horsepower. That power is now in a Dodge, the company that birthed the Neon. Incredible.

The Hellcat – what a name. One can imagine how the fine folks at Dodge came up with it. What creature can beat a Cobra? A panther? A mountain lion? Nay, only a hellcat. For less than the price of a BMW M3 or a Corvette, you can drive a leather-clad rocket that eats both tires and souls.

Baby boomers pine for the muscle-car era of the 1970s. In the age when a basic Camry can outrun Magnum PI’s Ferrari, when a mere Dodge can run with the best of them, as it’s been said before, we’re truly living in an automotive renaissance. Enjoy it my friends.

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172 Comments on “Ur-Turn: An Ode To The Hellcat...”


  • avatar
    omer333

    You just gave Bigtrucks a massive boner.

  • avatar

    #1 Why do you need a “headlight fixture” to be an intake when you’ve got a ram air hood scoop?

    #2 I doubt I’ll ever see any of these here in NYC other than a Car show. Where the hell would I be able to drive that thing?

    • 0 avatar
      omer333

      Dragstrip? Old airfields? BQE at 2am? Jersey Turnpike?

    • 0 avatar
      calgarytek

      #1. Because hoonage.
      #2. Montana. Or Highway 501 run from Milk River to Cardston (just up in Alberta). You get to go through ‘Whiskey Gap’…

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        I love driving in Montana. I once got a ticket for doing 105 in a rented Focus on I-15. Cost me $40.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @danio3834 – you ever get to drive or ride in Montana after the national 55 was repealed?
          I took a picture of the big 4×8 road sign “Day Time Speed Limit – Reasonable and Prudent”.
          I was on a ’96 YZF1000 and passed a line of cars, the lead car was a state trooper.
          That was some of the best riding I ever done.

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            I’ve heard all about the Reasonable and Prudent era, but unfortunately never got to experience it. Although I can see much of that attitude still remains. The sheriff I met was awfully nice too.

    • 0 avatar
      Zykotec

      Back and forth to Jersey through the tunnels? all day, preferably not as high or higher than 4th gear ? ( roll down the windows, stop traffic and then just accelerate up to the speed limit, again and again, completely ingnoring the (barely audible) desperate honking behind you as common commuters get more and more annoyed.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      “Where the hell would I be able to drive that thing?”

      Dragstrips

      Abandoned runways

      Rural roads outside Oklahoma City

      http://www.news9.com/story/23159683/okc-police-investigating-stars-of-discovery-channel-reality-show

      …Investigators know the racers and where they work and have since discovered most activities occur outside of OKC’s jurisdiction. They have also learned that it is not necessarily illegal.

      “Some towns, they have permits to do certain things. We know there are airports around the metro area that aren’t open and they do things there,” said Nelson…

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        OKC? Indeed. In fact, there are plenty of “rural” roads here in the metro, as well as on the outskirts.

        The last time I saw a street-racer, he hit a bad bump and scraped off his oil pan.

    • 0 avatar

      1. Because cooling, apparently. If your program specs include being able to spend 5 hours on a track on a hot day, in a car you’re offering a regular warranty on, airflow becomes a really, really big deal. Look at all the cooling apparatus Ford stuffed into the last GT500, same deal.

      2. I kind of like the idea of some anti-hipster in Brooklyn buying one of these as a grocery-getter and runabout.

    • 0 avatar
      Juniper

      Where the hell would I be able to drive that thing? Pretty much most places west of the Hudson and East of I-15. I think NewYorkers are geography challenged.

    • 0 avatar
      PeteRR

      The BQE at 2AM.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Yea right… with all that construction? That road is downright war torn by the Gowanus/Battery Tunnel, and as you get farther north it you have to turn…… no way in this school bus coupe

        Best bet….. LIE. Nice straight shot from the Midtown tunnel to the Cross Island Expressway, which is also a nice little shoot north until you get past the Grand Central exit. There’s a mean right that I almost killed myself in at ~135 in an old Maxima…………

        I swear, I could drive around NY highways with my eyes closed.

    • 0 avatar

      Big Truck, forgive me for what I said yesterday about this car being ugly. It’s actually quite good looking.

    • 0 avatar
      bachewy

      Hood scoop not functional?

      The article says this car will be $55k. From the buzz I’ve read it will be $20k over that.

      Anyway, I agree with the article. This is a great time for enthusiasts. It won’t last so get yours (Mustang, Camaro, or Challenger) while they last.

  • avatar
    bunkie

    Experiencing ‘Waiting for Godot’ (I listened to a radio version) was one of the most painful experiences of my life. The only thing that would have made it worse would be for it to have a Philip Glass soundtrack.

    No single US fighter scored more victories than the Hellcat. Imagine what it must have been like for a 1944 Japanese pilot in an A6M (Zero) running into a flight of Hellcats. No armor, not enough gun, no self-sealing fuel tanks and no longer able to run away, it must have been terrifying.

    I harbor a not-so-secret desire for a Challenger of almost any variety so long as it has a manual transmission.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    “Where the hell would I be able to drive that thing?”

    One would have to live close to the Bonneville salt flats or something similar.

    It would seem preposterous to ask, but I assume this runs on Premium gas.
    I only hope it doesn’t have some sort of electronic stability control to tame that much power.

    A technical question for the cognoscenti: with this much power (and torque I assume) would it be best to have a 4 or perhaps even a 3 speed transmission? I mean, with this much power, one should easily achieve 80 mph on first gear.

    • 0 avatar
      Drewlssix

      Power is not the issue. Practically anything sold today could do 80 in 1st giver the right ratios. As for the ideal number of gears for a given application power and torque across the rev range matters along with mpg requirements. So no, a 3 speed would not be ideal.

  • avatar
    brianyates

    Big Truck, you’d be able to drive it to the nearest Fiat Chrysler dealer for the many repair issues it will likely have, you’ll also get to know your mechanic by name.

    • 0 avatar

      I had a 6.1-L 300 SRT for 65,500 miles.

      Only repairs required were two O2 sensors, and a strut that I bust by hitting a speedbump.

      I currently have a 300 SRT 2012 with almost 10,000 miles. No problems at all.

      So tell me: which SRT do you own and how many problems DO YOU HAVE with it???

      • 0 avatar
        gtrslngr

        Yeah right BT . Of course you do . And Dodge/Chrysler/JEEP isn’t at the bottom of the reliability heap … month after month … year after year !

        So let me guess . You work for a Dodge/Chrysler/JEEP dealership . Right ? Of course you do . Either that or you’ve been partaking in Walter Whites wares .. take your pick

        • 0 avatar
          Sigivald

          Now, to be fair to BTSR, let us suggest that perhaps the SRT vehicles *aren’t Darts or Avengers*.

          And that “reliability” numbers often include pretty trivial things, things that are likely to be worse on the bargain cars and less common on the high-end models.

          His *single anecdote*, taken as 100% true, is unrelated to the *Average* experience of Chrysler products, and further, the SRTs might not be on the same reliability curve as the bottom-end Jeeps and the Dart?

        • 0 avatar
          qest

          Actually, the thing is that the bottom of the heap has grown closer and closer to the top, while the top has inched downward.

          The difference in reliability between the best brands and the worst is nothing like it used to be.

        • 0 avatar
          Compaq Deskpro

          Charts don’t make his good cars bad.

        • 0 avatar
          Flipper35

          We have a 2000 Durango and have spent about $2500 in repairs of non-consumable items (water pump, thermostat, alternator, starter, etc) and it had 178k miles on it. Still gets better than 18mpg highway and the leather seats are still in great shape. We just traded a 2005 Stratus with the 2.7l with 167k miles. The water pump on that needed replaced and it runs off the timing chain. One of the stupidest designs on the planet that is.

          I know, what total pieces of crap.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            Flipper
            Those items are all consumable. In fact, when replacing timing belts on many foreign cars they suggest you replace the water pump at the same time because the timing belt drives the water pump.

            Sounds like you got some pretty good service out of both cars.

    • 0 avatar
      jpolicke

      36,000 on my SXT, only problem so far is chrome cracking on my wheels. Promptly replaced by Dodge.

  • avatar
    LRSIII

    Shouldn’t the movie be “Hellcats of the Navy” (Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis, 1957)? Perhaps the overly-obvious choice.

  • avatar
    mjz

    Best f*cking name ever. Menacing and sinister. Just saw a prototype and it is all that and a bag of chips. Keep it away from small children and the women folk.

  • avatar
    NotFast

    The muscle car era was in the 60′s ;-)

    • 0 avatar
      Toad

      The muscle car era is Today. A few cars in the 1960′s had a lot of straight line power, but most were dogs. Today everything has more power than it needs, sometimes a LOT more power. Not to mention safety, decent brakes, reliability, etc.

      Enjoy it while it lasts. If certain people have their way you will be riding a bicycle in a few years and had better be grateful to have that.

      • 0 avatar
        JD-Shifty

        the United Nations and the anti muscle car agenda. right?

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        >> Enjoy it while it lasts. If certain people have their way you will be riding a bicycle in a few years

        Even bicycles are faster now:

        http://www.bikeradar.com/us/road/news/article/world-human-powered-vehicle-speed-record-upped-to-83-13mph-38440/

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @mcs – “Enjoy it while it lasts.”

          Ford will come out with a new GT500 before the bicycle brigade shuts this car down.

          There is also a rumour of another Ford Super Car.

          GM may come out with a “big” engine of their own once they are no longer consumed by chasing skeletons in various closets aka recalls.

      • 0 avatar
        wumpus

        By certain people, you mean 100,000,000 Chinese all buying cars soon and then wanting to buy gas? And maybe an oil pipe to help send it their way?

  • avatar
    KixStart

    Yowza! Chrysler sticks more cubes and forced induction (a technology that certainly dates to the time of the original Hellcat) into one of their overweight retro sleds!

    Meanwhile, Toyota is cranking down the price of fuel cells and getting them ready for use on the street.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      “Meanwhile, Toyota is cranking down the price of fuel cells and getting them ready for use on the street.”

      Sexy.

      • 0 avatar
        Drewlssix

        The question is will those cells be used in yotas often promised overweight retro sled of their own? Ie the new supra? The most loved version of which combined the size of the corvair with the curb weight of a Chevelle.

    • 0 avatar

      You say that like a giant multinational corporation can only do one thing at a time.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        JR: “You say that like a giant multinational corporation can only do one thing at a time.”

        Yeah, well, Chrysler sure looks like a one-trick pony. Does Fiat-Chrysler have even a functional hybrid anywhere in its inventory, yet?

        • 0 avatar
          Sigivald

          Does it need one?

          (http://www.autonews.com/article/20140501/RETAIL01/140509988/chrysler-up-14-on-ram-best-ever-jeep-sales – evidently not?

          They don’t *have to* have one to sell cars, you know.)

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Sigivald – yes they do. They do not have the CAFE average to continue on as they are.

            Toyota has an over-abundance of credits. They could make a 2 mpg supercar and still not run out of credits.

        • 0 avatar
          wumpus

          Somehow I think fiat-chrysler has a certain amount of sales in Europe that aren’t all based around a 6.2l engine. It might not be enough to bring micro-diesels to the US (but I’d hope in the event of a gas hike they could at least bring some truck engines (i.e. diesels) for the trucks).

          There are times when a company needs to take risks and hope that conditions hold, but I hope they will at least be able to provide the option to ride out high gas prices soon.

      • 0 avatar
        redliner

        We know that Toyota can make a supercharged rocket-ship car, but can Chrysler make a hydrogen car? Somehow I doubt it. They don’t even have a hybrid yet.

        • 0 avatar
          wumpus

          Hydrogen car? Easy. Call up goodyear, replace He with H2. Call it “Hindenburg” for extra bonus points.

          * note: this isn’t meant to quite be like a certain poster’s attack on aluminum. H2 (with LOX) is basically a miracle fuel (high ISP) in rocketry and barely used. It is somewhat as miraculous in aerospace (in not weighing much) but not used *at* *all*. In cars it basically has no advantages at all, and is likely a joke played by engineering on marketing.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      So?

      Meanwhile, you can buy a 150cc new-made Vespa P150 from India.

      But that has NOTHING to do with the Hellcat, or high-performance cars, any more than Toyota’s Someday Fuel Cells do…

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        When I was about fourteen, throwing a lot of cubes into a car to get something stupid-fast seemed like a marvelous idea.

        Nowadays, I tend to look for the things that represent or advance the state of the art in some way.

    • 0 avatar
      Flipper35

      Actually less cubes than the standard SRT. From 6.4 to 6.2 liters displacement.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    To be fair, it hasn’t been announced what the Hellcat will cost just yet. It’s likely to be more than 55k. And that’s OK with me. SRT needed more exclusivity. Whatever they charger for it, it’s worth it.

    • 0 avatar

      Actually, it’s very likely to start right around $55k, though most will probably go out the door with sticker prices in the low-mid $60s, just like Ford and Chevy. I don’t know why the Mopar community keeps insisting that this thing will be priced far above the GT500 and ZL1; that has totally not been Chrysler’s approach elsewhere. And remember, it’s not an “SRT”, it’s a Dodge.

      • 0 avatar
        davefromcalgary

        “it’s not an “SRT”, it’s a Dodge”

        As it damn well should be.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        I have nothing more to offer than “wait and see”. If anything, the Z/28 has shown that it’s not out of the question to charge more than $70k for something in this category.

        • 0 avatar
          ellomdian

          MSRP and Dealer-Markup are 2 very different things. If you have the $$$ to buy one COPO-new, odds are you can find a dealer willing to knock off the bullshit.

          Yes, Al’s Big House of Dodge is going to have 2 of them, sitting on the floor, with a $7500 markup. If you absolutely must have one of the first 100 or so, you will pay a premium. But if you are qualified, and are willing to walk down the street to their competition, the commission they make on the base price is too good to pass up.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      I agree, Danio. I was on a Dodge lot over the weekend, the SRT8 Challengers were stickered at $53K. Now if they offer a Hellcat Core, like they do the SRT8 Core, it could be more attainable.

  • avatar

    I want one of these Hellcat thingies. My BMW-driving friends are appalled at my lurch toward what they see as lurid redneck excess, but I want one.

    At least, I think I want one. (I grew up around classic Mopars and have a soft spot for all the elements of that look. Little retro details like the font on the Challenger’s gas cap are almost painfully awesome.)

    Let’s put it this way: I want one if it’s as fun in the real world as a second-generation CTS-V, but not if it’s all numbers and no joy like the GT500. Recent SRT efforts don’t inspire great confidence on that front, but we’ll see.

  • avatar
    TW5

    In ten years, 23-year-old warehouse workers will drive these things head-on into minivans full of children.

    It will be a glorious ode to blue-collar America.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      They’ll be showing up at various car shows with less than 100 miles on the odometer, as rich men bought them to admire and store in the climate-controlled garage.

      Youngsters around here seem to have no problem plowing into other vehicles (and trees and telephone poles) with vehicles that feature much lower horsepower ratings.

      • 0 avatar
        challenger2012

        You could be corret about the cars showing up 10 years later, but 10 years from now, people will care about them. Does anyone care about a 10 year old Civic or Accord?

        • 0 avatar
          geeber

          Those cars are still being used as daily drivers. I see plenty of 10-15 year old Civics and Accords in daily use around here.

          An increasing number of shows are devoted to old Japanese cars, particularly in the western states.

          A few mint Hondas from the late 1970s and early 1980s have shown up at various Carlisle events…and are quickly bought, if they are for sale.

          • 0 avatar
            challenger2012

            @geeber The cars you have the hots for are el cheapo beaters, a car people have to drive rather than want to drive. You can drive in your Honda Civic, and I will drive my Challenger. On looks alone, whose car has the super model looks and whose car is the wall flower? The Civic is as reliable as a refigerator and has the looks to match. No doubt, I will pay more to drive my car, but I look forward every day to drive my car, and I get compliments on it no matter where I go. My engine is the 5.7 Hemi, I have not heard anything bad about it, nor have I heard any issues with the Challenger. I have replaced a front strut and a seat belt cconnector, under warranty. No too bad for 2 1/2 years

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            I love my money much too much to waste it driving a Challenger. I’ll happily drive a decent econobox and bank the money saved to eventually blow it on something truly worthwhile.

            And I wouldn’t say the Challenger has the looks issue all sewn up; the Civic coupe is a very attractive little car.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      I know dude, but those dastardly Prius drivers are killing people RIGHT NOW.

      http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/Oct/23/two-major-injury-crashes-university-city/

      • 0 avatar
        raresleeper

        But they- like- saved the whales in the process, so they’re- like- my heroes.

        Before you know it, we’ll all be driving EV’s, doing whatever you want at the office will be corporate policy, and taking “afternoon siestas” will be the new norm.

        I hereby dedicate this post in honor of the Hellcat.

        (DISCLAIMER: No EV’s were harmed during the posting of this comment. Electric vehicle enthusiasts- put down your non-frightening/everyday object weapons, please.)

    • 0 avatar
      raresleeper

      “In ten years, 23-year-old warehouse workers will drive these things head-on into minivans full of children.”

      Regarding the warehouse workers: there will be a lucky few :)

      They’ll need all of that horsepower to get them to and from the income inequality protests, and complain about after making their payments to the BHPH, there “ain’t nuttin’ left”.

      • 0 avatar
        PonchoIndian

        Don’t worry folks, we won’t have warehouse workers in 10 years because there will be nothing to keep in a warehouse. We’ll be in a lean-purchase society where drones deliver everything from overseas where it is made. Don’t worry though, NPR will still be on for the eco-weenies.

        • 0 avatar
          JD-Shifty

          people who want clean air and water also strike me as “wimps”. good call

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            JD
            I work in the “clean air” business.

            More regulation in the automotive industry will do less than nothing to improve our water and air.

            We need to start really going after large trucks, air transportation, not letting foreign business have breaks from EPA regulation if they build in this country (part of one of the new trade agreements), working on getting other large nations on board with environmental movements…

            Cars are the least of the environment’s problems at this point. Heck, most new cars these days exhaust cleaner air than is already in the environment.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            JD
            I work in the “clean air” business. More regulation regarding automobiles will do less than nothing to really help the environment, and will only make cars more expensive. We need to start going after large trucks, air transportation, business breaks for foreign companies that build factories in the US and aren’t required to follow EPA regs (part of a new trade agreement).

            We also need to get other nations on board with basic environmental regulations and standards. We can’t do it ourselves because in the big picture the USA isn’t the gross polluter. At this point we’re spending money and spinning our wheels.

  • avatar
    bomberpete

    Remind me again, what is the reason for the Viper at this point?

    • 0 avatar

      The Viper never made sense. The Corvette keeps beating it in all aspects but straight-line acceleration.

      The point of the Viper is merely to exist for rich guys who still remember how to drive a manual.

      • 0 avatar
        jpolicke

        Being a much lighter car the Viper would probably benefit more from a Hellcat motor. Too bad the car is so closely identified with the V-10.

        • 0 avatar
          Victor

          In this downsizing world I wound’t be chocked to see this V8 on a smaller, next-gen Viper.

        • 0 avatar
          Drewlssix

          With the new hemi and the v10 both supposedly sharing dimensions with the old LA series it’s a wonder the viper has not evolved into the hemi v10. The resulting hp liter numbers aught to put viper well above anything else naturally aspirated.

      • 0 avatar
        Flipper35

        Actually the first gen Viper had the highest win ratio of any car up to that point in history for any car in a major series.

    • 0 avatar
      baconator

      The Viper makes sense as a trackday car, where it’s still faster on a road course than a Stingray, and has the cooling/brakes/etc. to do lapping sessions all day long. The Viper is also beautifully finished and has great assembly details in the interior and underhood. The C7 is better than the C6 in this regard, but the Viper is on a whole ‘nother level. It’s a $100k car that looks and feels like a $200k car. I think it’s kind of evolved away from the core demographic of the previous-generation Viper, and hence not selling well. But I think it will be remembered as great piece of engineering, a car made by people who were bringing their “A” game.

      I’m sure a 600-horse Challenger would be a barrel of laughs to hoon around, but it’s a little big and nose-heavy to really be your dedicated trackday car. You’d do three track events and then realize that what you really wanted was a 300-horsepower Challenger for the street and a used Z06 or similar for trackdays.

      The Hellcat is a car that they’re making because it’s possible, and my guess is that guys will buy them because they’re excited that they can. Most owners will never exploit the performance for more than four seconds at a time.

    • 0 avatar

      The Viper made some sense when it was Bob Lutz’s way of telling the world at the end of the K-Car era that Mopar hadn’t yet forgotten that it was, y’know, MOPAR.

      It started making a lot less sense in about 1999, and it has been pretty close to pointless since the day the silk came off the 300C show car in 2003. And yet it soldiers on, still sounding like the world’s angriest UPS truck.

  • avatar
    LeMansteve

    “For perspective, in the 1990s, a McLaren F1, a million-dollar supercar had 627 horsepower. That power is now in a Dodge, the company that birthed the Neon. Incredible.”

    This is a one-dimensional and misleading statement. Any major manufacturer today can easily create 600+ hp with a large V8 and forced induction. The reason the F1 cost a million bucks is because it is arguably the purest and most precise driver’s tool ever (for the road). It is superlative in nearly every way. Don’t forget that 627hp came without forced induction.

    • 0 avatar
      BunkerMan

      And it didn’t weigh like it was made of pure lead.

      • 0 avatar
        LeMansteve

        Thus my “superlative in every way” comment. The F1 weighs only about 2,400 lbs. This is about the same weight as the original Dodge Neon, which is an interesting twist to the author’s original comparison.

        Based on the weight of the current SRT8 392, I expect the Hellcat to weigh about 4,200 lbs(!!). All of a sudden, that 600hp really has a lot to do.

  • avatar
    April

    Obviously this car is aimed at the insecure rich but just wait until Peak Oil hits.

    Not sure how sexy he will project when he has a horse pulling this thirsty anachronism.

    • 0 avatar
      PonchoIndian

      Please explain why they would have to be insecure.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        Because people who have differing tastes must be in some way defective.

        Believe me, I would much rather drive my 600hp car in the absence of all humanity.

        • 0 avatar
          PonchoIndian

          The older I get the more defective I become, yet the more secure I am.

          I’m game for the absence of humanity! Might make driving a regular old 350hp car more enjoyable too.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      Peak Oil’s been due any day now for the past 20 years.

      I ain’t holding my breath.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        +1 this – sigivald
        April seems rather insecure herself being that she wouldn’t want to be seen in this car, oh dear what would all her coworkers think!
        Obviously if she can’t have fun no one should be allowed to have fun.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @April – the “rich” aren’t too worried about the price of oil and as far as insecurity goes……. the 1% can afford a security force that rivals any US Special Forces group.

    • 0 avatar

      2004 called. They want their Peak Oil hysteria back. You’re supposed to scold us about global warming nowadays.

      And you fail on another front: A lurid high-horsepower Dodge product is just about the last car an insecure rich guy would buy. These will mostly get grabbed by insecure not-rich guys who really can’t properly afford them, with a few extremely secure rich guys who want to scandalize their BMW-driving friends and random eccentrics mixed in.

  • avatar
    PonchoIndian

    It’s extremely entertaining to read all the eco-weenies bitching about this car.

    • 0 avatar
      raresleeper

      Just be careful of the eco-terrorists, Poncho.

      They’ll pelt you to death with fresh organic fruit.

    • 0 avatar
      jpolicke

      One of the best features of these cars is the way they announce to all comers “No, I don’t give a fiddler’s fork about my carbon footprint. Thanks for asking.”

      • 0 avatar
        Drewlssix

        And yet the real world carbon footprint of this beast is dwarfed by a fifteen year old accord four banger.

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          The carbon footprint BS as a response to twenty year old assertions by Mercedes-Benz and Volvo that their latest gas guzzlers emitted air that was cleaner than they ingested. Carbon footprint is really a simple measure of how much fuel is burned. That’s why the carbon footprint of this car would still be double that of a 15 year old Accord. It wouldn’t matter if the Accord in question had all of its emission controls stripped and one bum spark plug. Carbon footprints are all about preserving the environmental hysteria model for destroying the middle class after actual forms of pollution had been addressed.

    • 0 avatar
      Maymar

      As a low-level eco-weeny, who’s complaining about a limited production car that’ll mostly sell to guys approaching retirement, that’ll promptly hermetically seal the things in their garage, and maybe (maybe!) take it out if the weather forecast calls for sun, like 0.03% humidity, and no rain until the Toronto Maple Leafs win the cup? It could get half a mile per gallon, and it’d still be statistically irrelevant.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        +1. Very few of these are going to be built and most will just be on Dairy Queen and Culver’s duty.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Maymar, thank you! I’m a higher level “eco-weenie – and as proud of it as the douche with the “God, Guns, and Guts” sticker on his F350 proclaiming his redneck status to the world – and I love this car and glad it is available. Statistically, it’s consumption is irrelevant in the big picture. It’s not like we are talking about 60% of our rolling stock drinking fuel like this….you know the way it once was. I hope these special cars always are around.

        If you ask me, the OP loaded the story to get extra clicks on the gas consumption front…really unnecessary but it did do what the OP intended.

    • 0 avatar
      Kenmore

      It seems the ratio here of eco-weenies to glassy eyed prong pullers favors the latter. To which I say what the hell, smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.

      Wednesday is mixed metaphor night at Chez Fridge.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Maymar – eloquently put.

        I rarely ever see a muscle car in the hands of a dude young enough to have the gonads and cardiovascular status to survive the adrenal rush of mashing the go pedal.

  • avatar
    BunkerMan

    So you like it then?

  • avatar
    MrIcky

    This car is glorious.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    So Chrysler has built Intrepids, Avengers, and now Hellcats. All we need now is a Corsair and a Dauntless to complete the set. Oh, and maybe an extra large truck they can call the Missouri.

  • avatar
    gtrslngr

    The Real… and only Ode to the Dodge Hellcat SRT *

    Roses are red
    Violets are blue
    The SS stinks
    And so do you

    Breaking and Stalling
    With nary a thought
    Making your owners
    Wish another brand bought

    Because Dodges are garbage
    Bling Chryslers as well
    Mullet styled drivers
    Crashing straight into hell

    So go away quickly
    Oh FCA SRT
    The public needs quality
    Not fresh bottled pee

    Thank you ! Thank you very much . CD’s and T-shirts in the lobby … love ya all … and see you next go around … No no … you’re the best … till next time … Good Luck and Good Night !

    * Not the iconic WWII Hellcat airplane

  • avatar
    celebrity208

    Are you sure the engine isn’t named after the M18 Hellcat tank destroyer? (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M18_Hellcat) The analogy would still work b/c the M18 was hella fast (compared to other tanks) and I’m sure Dodge doesn’t mind thinking of this car as a competition destroyer.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    55,000?

    That’s about the number of other cars I’d choose over one of these.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    This isn’t just any supercharger either. It’s a twin screw positive displacement on a clutched pulley with 4 intercoolers. This is just about the best setup you can get for monster freakish low end torque. I suspect the torque on this is record setting for a production engine.

    Mopar needs to start offering this setup on the pentastar and blow ego boost out of the water. 450 HP and instant torque in a ram getting 25 plus on the highway when the clutch disengages?? No turbo heat or overspeed issues to worry about? Sign me up.

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    And in other news…

    Over 75% of all Hellcats sold will be sharing garage space with at least one Harley-Davidson.

    In honor of my newfound love, the Hellcat, I think I’ll leave the office early, crank up some Kid Rock, pound some Budweisers, and start shooting skeet in the back yard with my old friend, the 12 gauge.

    Oh yeah!

    (Lol. I love this car.)

    • 0 avatar
      gtrslngr

      ….. with the Harley Davidson working and being about as reliable as the Dodge Hell(cat) !

      ( sarcasm definitely intended )

      • 0 avatar
        Syke

        Like I asked a few days ago, are you this delightful when your audience is within arm’s reach?

        You remind me of the occasional guy who’d show up at the M/C clubhouse about 10pm on a Friday night, having started bar hopping a couple of hours earlier.

        By 11pm, one of the brothers would have gently ushered him out the back door to have a little ‘discussion’ regarding his mouth. We’d be nice guys, even gave him his bike back to get off the property.

        Pity the same can’t be done on the internet.

    • 0 avatar
      challenger2012

      I know you have no love for the Challenger, but you are on the mark concerning the Challenger sharing space with a HD. Parked sideways in my garage and in front of my Challenger is my 2010 Harley Davidson.

      By the way, my neighbor has owned his HD, purchased new, since 1995. It has over 100,000 miles on original engine, transmission, clutch and drive belt. The engine, transmission, clutch and belt are all original, never repaired or replaced. He has had issues with his carburetor when going up to Colorado, due to thin air. Maybe you need to get out more and talk to people who own the products you feel are not good.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Things change and yet some just won’t admit it. I first heard “Buy a Harley, get the best; ride a mile and walk the rest” in like 1982. Can’t imagine it is like that anymore. People forget that BMW once stood for “bring me a wrecker” or “breakdown motor works” so, uh, wait, never mind…

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          I recall the old HD joke – what do you call a Harley that doesn’t leak oil?????

          Empty.

        • 0 avatar
          kuman

          BMW = Bloody Money Waster / Big Money Wasted / Bring More Women

          • 0 avatar
            Curt in WPG

            BMW = Break My Wallet. I work in the aftermarket parts industry and we get more returns on BMW parts than other makes. 25 year old kid forgets that the used 5 series he bought for the same price as a new Cruze costs a fark-ton more to fix than a Cruze.

          • 0 avatar
            davefromcalgary

            Curt,

            Is it “forgot” or “chose to ignore, cause I have a BMW!!!”

    • 0 avatar
      WarDogDaddy

      raresleeper, somewhere in the long lost you and I share some genes. Kid Rock, COLD beer, and a 12 gauge. In the background is my 2011 Challener RT (takes me back to when I was 20 and my ’70 Challenger RT) Magnaflow Cat Back, Mopar Cold Air Intake, Diablo Programmer, maybe 420 HP. Everytime I crank it I can’t quit smiling.

  • avatar
    SoCalMikester

    what could beat a cobra? a honeybadger! theyre badass!

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    The only problem I have with American muscle is the tendency for the lack of handling. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a powerful vehicle that can manage this kind of power.

    But it will suit BigTrucksReview since he can only race old farts at the lights in Focus’s. Maybe now he can race someone in a Golf GTI.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      “The only problem I have with American muscle is the tendency for the lack of handling.”

      @BigAl, this isn’t a 1985 Buick Grand National with 300+ turbocharged HP and no handling or without adequate brakes to bring it to a halt.

      We’ve made much progress since the 1960s.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @Principal Dan
        I’m not stating the US Muscle car handles as poorly as a 60s vehicle.

        But, US Muscle is still behind the Euro’s and Aussie’s.

        I would like to see a comparison between this Hellcat (which I do find attractive) and a GTS Commodore around a race track.

        TTAC doesn’t really seem to do comparisons.

        http://www.themotorreport.com.au/57030/2013-hsv-gts-gen-f-reviewed-track-test

        • 0 avatar
          hubcap

          @BigAl

          Can U.S. muscle get just a little credit? The Challenger has always performed more like a PBY than a F6F in the twisties and I don’t know if the HellCat will reverse that trend *but* there are other cars.

          Mustang GT–> Right on the heels of the E90 M3 around VIR.

          BOSS 302–> Beats M3 around VIR (and multiple other tracks).

          Camaro 1LE–> Meets and in certain instances exceeds BOSS.

          Camaro ZL1-> 580 hp, Magnetic ride suspension, an absolute beast.

          Camaro Z28-> On pace with Porsche GT3 at Barber Motorsports Park.

          I realize we all have our favorites but to say American muscle can’t turn is so far off base to make your other statements suspect.

          • 0 avatar
            MrIcky

            Dirty little secret is that BMWs are way overrated. Lowly little Cobalt SS’s can keep up with any 3xx short of an M series in the twisties. Yet every BMW still has all this street cred for handling, even in the non-M guises.

            The SRT to date hasn’t been able to corner with the 1LE and such, but since the 392 upgrade they still pull >.9g’s. Not exactly like you end up in a ditch every time you look at a corner.

            Every truly great memorable car is as much about character as absolute performance. The Hellcat has potential to be one of those special cars thats a little bit more than the sum of it’s parts and track numbers.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            @hubcap
            I don’t think they are ‘slow’. But they aren’t as quick as the European offerings overall.

            I mean a GT40 is a very nice vehicle and so are a few Corvettes. But the Camaro is quite good, but it’s built on a Commodore platform.

            Here’s a ‘sample’of the Top Gear Test Track times. Dates vary significantly.

            The time that surprised me is our Holden Maloo ute time, quicker than a Roush Mustang, SS Camaro and 370Z GT.

            But these times are loaded with European vehicles at the top of the list.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Top_Gear_test_track_Power_Lap_Times

  • avatar

    The original Hellcat, the M-18 armored vehicle, was actually built by Buick, perhaps inspired by a drawing by Art Ross, who headed styling for Cadillac and Oldsmobile in the 1940s and 1950s. Ross’ “M-1 Hellcat” was a huge tank destroyer.

    More here:
    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/05/for-memorial-day-the-arsenal-of-democracy-the-big-3-go-to-war/

  • avatar
    pb35

    I’ll take mine in Jazz Blue with Sepia Laguna leather. No sunroof.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Grtsllr or whatever, what is your frame of reference for the vitriol regarding FCA? I don’t recall anyone ever making the argument that FCA was claiming to, but one would think based on your posts you would be lucky to make it home from the dealer after purchase. We, collectively, know this is not true.

    This Hellcat monstrosity, which one could argue is what the H1 Alpha was to The SUV genre, is just pure unbridled awesome. Sign me up.

  • avatar
    anti121hero

    Psh this Is nothing compared to 14 + liter caterpillar engines roaming in every single town, city and highway

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    Had Dodge said the engine is named for the airplane? I was curious about that. Did Chrysler build airplanes in the war like GM and Ford did? Would be nice if they built some under license Hellcats and could claim a link to the plane that way.

    Also refreshing to see so many of the B&B familiar with the plane. That plane, of all WW2 fighters gets the short end of the fame stick, despite it’s incredible record of success in combat. Not that it’s more famous brethren like the Corsair and Mustang aren’t deserving of their adulation, but even though I’ve been to more air shows than I can count, I’ve never seen a Hellcat perform. A recently closed Aviation Museum here in Central Florida had a beat up, un restored one in their storage facility, and that was always a plane I enjoyed going to visit (along with an example another plane that doesn’t get enough recognition – the SBD Dauntless).

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t know if Chrysler built complete airplanes, I believe that they were more involved in tank production, but the company’s Dodge-Chicago plant built thousands of Wright 18 cylinder 2,200 HP “Cyclone” engines for the B-29 Superfortress. Chrysler also operated a gas diffusion plant for the Manhattan Project. Chrysler’s first Hemi was an experimental V16 airplane engine that never saw combat.

  • avatar

    Ten years from now you can drive this into a trailer park down here in Gawga and the locals will think you are one bad ass dude.

    • 0 avatar
      WarDogDaddy

      theswedishtiger, fyi in MY Georgia trailer park they ALREADY think I am a bad assed dude, and I am only driving the R/T version. God only knows the impact a Hellcat driver will make :-)

  • avatar
    Z71_Silvy

    “I’d say 6.2 liters is plenty of engine. Too much, in fact, especially if you’re trying to save the planet one bike lane at a time. It’s simply too much engine that consumes too many gallons of gasoline, which causes all sorts of problems down the road.”

    God I hope that sarcasm…otherwise, please don’t write anything automotive again…unless it’s on a Nissan Leaf blog

  • avatar
    suspekt

    Sadly, I bet a Camaro 1LE spanks this around most road courses.

    I honestly believe a Camaro 1LE would be sitting in my driveway right now if it wasn’t for the unforgivable absolutely disgusting interior. I love Chevy but that I interior (and sight lines) are a deal breaker.

    Having said that, the Challenger SRT in 6 speed manual is undeniably a desirable car. I just wish the Hellcat model had some tasteful “in the metal” fender flares that accommodated some meaty 305 section rear tires. Some meats on the rear are the ONLY thing missing.

    • 0 avatar
      nrd515

      I don’t mind the interior of the Camaro, it’ the basic looks of the thing that repulse me. Apparently, the next gen Camaro is pretty much going to look like the present one. Yikes! I’m not crazy about the Mustang’s front and rear end, so it’s probably going to be another Challenger, a ’16, an R/T with (hopefully) a 392 in it.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      A 1LE? Doubtful. A Z28 or a ZL1 maybe, but not a 1LE. A 200hp advantage more than makes up for any shortcomings in weight or handling.

    • 0 avatar

      Autocross course, maybe. Not anything with a real straight. Better opt for the ZL1 instead.

  • avatar
    Noble713

    “Each with enough horses in their stables combined to supply a glue factory for a decade.”

    I’m commenting just to give well-deserved props for this sentence. But since I’m here….

    I’m glad this car exists. I just wish the Challenger’s body style could be had in a package not much bigger than a GT86/BRZ. I’m thinking Challenger body + BRZ or at most Mustang size + 600hp LS engine. THAT is a muscle car I’d….well, download pictures of.

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    There is still the rumored RWD replacement for the Avenger (Which we just bought in Blue Streak with a Pentastar/6 speed based on Jack’s recommendation and my wife has named Steve) that may or may not have room for a V8. Lots of names bounced around as well but the local dealer said it will be available in the new ‘cuda, but I take that with a block of salt.

  • avatar
    I_Like_Pie

    They should drop this engine in a 300 and call it the HONEY BADGER !!!!!

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    Such a funny article! Great to read. Big smiles.


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