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Dodge Challenger Pros and Cons: What To Know When Weighing Your Decision

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Black Dodge Challenger

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The Dodge Challenger is an All-American icon known for its unapologetic muscle car styling and big performance engines. Over the years, Dodge continued to stick to its guns when it came to the Challenger to varying levels of success. Despite its age, the Dodge Challenger remains a popular sports car in its segment.

If you’re tired of your daily driver and want some serious oomph in your daily commute, the Dodge Challenger might just be your next car. However, like all vehicles, there are benefits and drawbacks to owning a powerful sports car like the Dodge Challenger.

Today’s post will discuss the Dodge Challenger’s pros and cons. What are the best qualities of this iconic sports car? What potential deal-breakers may put you off the Challenger? Let’s get to it!

What We Love About the Dodge Challenger

Let’s begin this guide on the Dodge Challenger’s pros and cons with the positives. Below are the bright spots of the Challenger.

Massive Horsepower

Most people who would buy the Dodge Challenger will likely cite the brawny engine lineup as their main selling point. The base engine is the renowned Pentastar 3.6-liter V6 capable of delivering 303 hp and 268 lb-ft of torque paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission. While we appreciate Dodge’s commitment to include an entry-level engine, the absolute delight comes with the V8 engines.

The R/T Challenger models upgrade to the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine that produces 372 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque when paired with the 8-speed automatic. However, true thrill-seekers will love the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI that can deliver up to 717 horsepower with 656 lb-ft of torque – available on the high-end SRT Hellcat Redeye trims.


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Unapologetic Muscle Car Design

The Challenger’s design has been around for over a decade, and it still works. From the long nose hanging over a wide grille to the nostalgic quad headlights, plenty is here for you if you love the muscle car aesthetic. The Dodge Challenger is the very definition of “retro-cool,” its low, long, and wide muscle body ensures you don’t mistake it for anything other than being an American muscle car.

The Dodge Challenger’s sleek and aggressive design makes a solid first impression, and you’ll have people breaking their necks as you drive by.

Pleasant and Comfortable Interior

Most people don’t expect an interior of a brawny muscle car to be quite posh and comfy, but the Challenger did it. Sure, there were compromises in the overall space, but it’s still one of the roomier interiors in the muscle car segment. In keeping with the retro-cool theme, the front seats are big and spacious and hug your body nicely. 

Adults can actually use the Challenger’s back seats which is more than you can say with other muscle cars. Interior design is also on-point with sporty gauges, metal trims, and sophisticated seat details.

Updated Tech

The Challenger may be old school in design, but it has a modern and feature-packed infotainment system. With a car like the Challenger, Dodge would’ve gotten away by giving us the bare minimum, but looking at the infotainment, you’ll know where the money went – and it’s well-spent.

All Challenger models up to the R/T come with a 7-inch Uconnect system with connectivity support for Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and two USB ports. Starting with the R/T Scat Pack, the screen is upgraded to an 8.4-inch unit, adding SiriusXM support. A six-speaker sound system is standard on the lower V6 trims, while the Scat Pack Widebody receives a premium Alpine sound system and amplifier.


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Good Reliability

Dodge definitely hit the nail in terms of the Challenger’s reliability. Sports cars aren’t exactly known for their reliability, but the Challenger is one of the notable exceptions, especially the newer models. According to J.D. Power, the 2022 Dodge Challenger has a predicted reliability rating of 88 out of 100, which is considered Great. 

For more information on the Challenger’s reliability over the years, we highly recommend checking out our Dodge Challenger reliability post.

What We Don’t Like About the Dodge Challenger

To move on with this guide about the Dodge Challenger’s pros and cons, here are some reasons not to buy this car.

Not Suitable for Beginners

Not to rain on anyone’s parade, but the Challenger is not for everyone, specifically for beginners and people looking to have their first car. The Challenger is a no-holds-barred burnout machine and considerably faster than traditional vehicles. So you’ll have to think twice before buying the Challenger as your first car or gifting it to an excited teen.

Difficult to Drive

On a related note, the Challenger is not a beginner’s car because it’s not easy to drive. The Challenger has always been at home with straight-line jaunts. And to that extent, Dodge has stuck to the formula with the Challenger.

However, once you get behind the wheel of this car, you’ll feel how heavy the vehicle feels – a quality that hasn’t changed much since 2008. It’s a hefty beast of a car with a suspension designed for cruising rather than carving corners. With that said, the driving dynamics of the Challenger feel limited, especially when compared with its contemporaries like the Mustang.


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Should You Buy a Dodge Challenger?

Let’s conclude this guide for the Dodge Challenger’s pros and cons with the question: should you buy it?

The Dodge Challenger offers a beautiful mix of classic and modern. It brought the styling and brawn that made classic muscle cars great while still keeping up with modern vehicle technology. Plus, it has a relatively comfortable and spacious interior. If you’re looking for horsepower, the Challenger won’t disappoint, especially if you go for the HEMI V8 engines.

On the other hand, the Challenger may be too unwieldy for beginners and amateurs. It has quite a heft to it, so it’s not the best option for city cruising, and its wide-body makes it a nightmare to park in a crowded area. The Dodge Challenger isn’t your everyday car.

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