Review: 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392

Posted on 23. Nov, 2011 by in Auto News

If you are a 24 Hours of LeMons judge, it is expected that you roll onto the track in a righteous Judgemobile. Maybe it's a fenderless, three-wheeled Amazon, or maybe it's a woodie Roadmaster … Sometimes, though, you will need a car manufacturer PR Flack and something new and shiny to call, then stand by helplessly as it gets T-bone by some lemons racer runaway Winnebago to see how the budget-challenged racer crowd responds its presence. The '11 Cadillac Escalade Platinum Hybrid Judgemobile was kind of terrible (though it did have large Presence) So this time I decided to spend the weekend with a male, tire-smokin 'V8-powered vehicle that would make heartland American car freaks, for example, the kind we get at the Showroom-Schlock Shootout LeMons in Illinois – Home chanting teary-eyed Pledges of Allegiance to a fiery sky full of imaginary F-111s. That would be the Challenger SRT8, of course, in Vanishing point white.
So I called the Chrysler Flack: "Hey, Giuseppe:" I did not say, "Remember you all the beautiful things that I wrote about your cute little Euro-ecosocialist commuter car? owe me Paisan '! Now give me something worth a real American, and make sure it's a bloody Hemi under the hood. Capisce?"
So, the next thing I know, there are a few heavyweights with very thin watches and suspicious bulge suit delivery of this baby to Midway Airport. Of course, the entire Italian schtick fell out for me at the moment it occurred to me (about an illustrious Eagle Premier / LH-platform / LX platform line), that the Challenger chassis ancestry goes all the way back to the Renault 25, with a bunch of Mercedes-Benz W210 and W220 suspension bits thrown into the mix. Chrysler, AMC, Renault, Mercedes-Benz, Fiat, maybe even here a bit of hidden genetic material and Mitsubishi I-liked the Challenger already!
It's a good-looking machine, although I for endless paragraphs on the psychological-voodoo/no-doubt-focus-grouped-to-death reasoning behind the choice of the E-body Challenger as an inspiration for the look of this car could grumble.
Chrysler never really was a true head-to-head competitor with the original Mustang and Camaro, size of the original A-body-based Barracuda. It does not matter, because spelled the downfall of the Plymouth Barracuda nameplate was off the table, the current Mustang / Camaro would rival its retro-based view from the thicker, access revenue loss E-body. The ace in the hole was the hagiographic Vanishing point, which has managed to cast the Challenger in a role as a symbol of victory over the individual man of repression, breaking the downward spiral sense of the Vietnam War-fueled American diminished expectations … to the Malaise Era or something like that out. Freedom.
Personally, I think Vanishing point'S Brush strokes are too broad to capture really that early '70s proto-Malaise sense (although the hunting scenes are pretty cool), published Two-Lane Blacktop, also in 1971, has a much better job. OK, meandering historical cinematic discourse on-let's talk about it now.
I think I am a member of the target audience for this thing, I got my first driver's license in 1982, which was the golden age of cheap Detroit Muscle in California, and the car out of things Dazed and Confused just as well could be a documentary about the street-race-obsessed car culture have at my high school. Battered but-quick 10-to-15-year-old big-block Chevelles and Satellites and Fairlanes could not have much more than a large. At that time I was trying to imagine what it would be to buy a new Cutlass 442 or Super Bee was … Detroit and now can not sell the much faster, much better built in the 21 Century version.
Right. So what this car does best? Burnouts! In all my years blowing the treads off junkyard bias-ply rubber and rental car, I never experienced any vehicle that makes perfect, totally controlled burnouts anywhere near as simple as the car works. I'm willing to bet money that Chrysler engineers made this feature a design priority, and they earn a healthy bonus for success so admirably. This car had the automatic transmission, the burnouts made easier, but I have a feeling that the manual trans car has no problem in that department. I also tried to connect some hard drag-style boot and the car very well, it would not be much of a trick to knock out some good dragstrip goes into this machine.
Seriously, can you elaborate burnout Novels with the Challenger SRT8 … Character development, climax, resolution, the works. The folks at Autobahn Country Club were kind enough to let me use their skidpad for a tire-smokin 'photo shoot, and the clouds of tire smoke completely covered the whole paddock, a quarter-mile wind. Later I heard that the smogged-out LeMons racers cheered the car amazing burnout performance, and more, the finding that they were heard. Visiting their nearest Dodge dealership and shopping for Challengers, when the race was over
Unfortunately, the Challenger-as-Judgemobile was stolen by a far superior Showroom-Schlock Shootout Judgemobile show. Let's face it: If a LeMons judge gets to choose between a 2012 Challenger SRT8 and Reliant Super Robin for keeping the penalty parade, there is no other choice than to take the Reliant.
We have put them both on the track served as a co-speed cars that I'm sure the first time have a Robin and a Challenger in this task it.
Judge Sam agreed with me that the Challenger SRT8 (ie the journey between the hotel and the race track) much nicer for real driving tasks than the Escalade Platinum had been. So, burnouts aside, as it is to drive?
The front seats are very comfortable and the quality of the interior materials is quantum leaps ahead of the "unfit" interiors, says Sergio Marchionne horrified. The suspension has. Fine, Renault / Mercedes-Benz-style job smoothing the Stalingradian pothole-O-rama road in Chicago and Joliet I'm sure I could be one of these things on an exurban-edge-city commute take hours every day and feel pretty good about the ride and comfort.
Granted, there is something like an ergonomic disaster. You can not see diddly-squat behind you, with the huge C-pillars create maddeningly large blind spots. Her hands cover up the turn-signal indicators, if they are on the steering wheel. The back seat is all but useless, maybe it could hold a few small adult, but you will not be able to (get into the seats in the first place I was even putting my LeMons Supreme Court bribery alcohol in the backseat, instead) for the trunk. The lid for the center console storage compartment can not be operated by human hands.
The controls for navigation / audio features are frustratingly unintuitive, with the long lead time for their entry, which seems to be the norm for the car-computer interfaces. Why a $ 90 phone by Malaysian sweatshop prisoners are made to produce immediate results of four memory-hog applications simultaneously, while a simple choice for title brings a $ 48,000 car's computer to its knees, is beyond me.
But who gives a damn about nickel / dime irritants like that? Not with me! More burnouts!
In fact, I should will review this car for the pages Gnarly Burnout Magazine. WOOOOOOOOOOO!
Detroit has really lost its way in some areas in recent decades, but not when it comes to V8 engines. GM and Chrysler make some miraculously good pushrod V8s these days, and this 392-cubic-inch/470-horsepower engine is not even a member of the same Species as the rough idle, not cold start, rickety, single-digit-MPG relics of so-called Muscle Car Golden Age. This engine starts immediately, at idle in most civilized way highway fuel economy managed well into the 20s … and it creates a two-ton-plus car the quarter-mile drag in under 13 seconds.
Speaking of tons, the big-block '70 Challenger scaled to almost £ 3,800, so we can not to hard on the '12 SRT8 version for weighing more than 4200 pounds. Nevertheless, I can not help but think of the two options, Chrysler Mopar The Greatest of all freakin 'time instead of a faulty-but-lovable burnout king commuter car could have built. The first option would have been to have put this engine in a car weighing 2900 pounds. We all can think of a dozen reasons why this could never happen, but only introduce it.
The other way would have been to. 1971 Plymouth Satellite instead of the '70 Challenger as retro inspiration, which the Plymouth marque out of retirement if needed was I would buy one now.
Provided by: Old Car Brochures
As for the handling and brakes and all that stuff too decadent Yurpeans really care about his so I did not get a chance to take the Challenger on the highway CC road course, nor did I hammer it 11/10ths on the mean streets of Joliet. It seemed perfectly competent at my usual 3/10ths pace. Anyway, do not buy this car for going around the corner, commie (though Baruth managed to do quite well with the '11 at Infineon).
The LeMons Supreme Court ruled that there was a way in which the Challenger was a superior Judgemobile. At the heart of the Hair of the Dog Air Guitar Penalty Miscreant drivers in air guitar was their way through the entirety of the Challenger Nazarath-centric required Hair of the Dog, while waving a large American flag.

Look on our works, would-be great powers and despair.
Nazareth, a Hemi and "AMERICAN MADE" tattooed on her back. Chrysler should hire this guy as their spokesman.
What are the quality of the small pieces in out-of-the-way places, all connections and fittings that I saw several notches on the quality of the parts I've seen in Chrysler products from some years back could. It seems that the days of sub-low bidder provider be over.
There were a few touches lightly flaky, like these neon style weatherstrip seam, but nothing that felt like it about to snap off in your hand was.
The Verdict: The one-dimensional side, well built, engine absolutely top notch. Would make a good real world daily driver. King of the Smoky burnouts.