2009 Dodge Charger SRT-8

30 Oct 2009 | 2,077 views | No Comment
The Dodge Charger is a vehicle of many faces, most of them made up by engine choice. For the economy-minded, there's the base Charger with a 2.7-liter V6. You can upgrade to a 3.5-liter V6 delivering 250 hp. Then there's the 5.7-liter V8 that offers 370 hp. And for the power  hungry, there's the SRT8 version with a 6.1-liter HEMI V8 that delivers a whopping 425 hp. ChargerSRT In my mind, the Charger is the best vehicle for Chrysler's SRT8 treatment. It has a nice sedan body on a long wheelbase. It looks like it's going fast even when it's sitting still. Put the right engine in it and it ev en sounds fast while sitting still. Let's talk about the engine. The 6.1-liter V8 delivers 425 horsepower through a 5-speed automatic transmission. This is a smooth gearbox that we've seen in other Chrysler product cars. You have the option of shifting manually by tapping the gearshift lever to the right or left, but this is such a great automatic that there's really very little need for the manual. Acceleration is awesome - and awful. It took me a while to learn how to feather the pedal so I didn't look like a crazy teenager behind the wheel. Granted, there are times when you want all that power immediately, but for normal driving it can sometimes be too much. I could learn to live with too much though. One of the problems we had with the Charger was that the weather didn't cooperate. We had residual snow and ice on many of the side roads we traveled, which made the rear-wheel drive charger complain a bit. Fortunately, the authorities cleared the roads quickly and we could have more fun with the car. I also felt the engine delivered as much noised as power, especially in hard acceleration. In normal driving, though, engine noise was more acceptable. The seats are from the SRT8 parts bin and offer excellent side support. Since the SRT8 also includes a stiffened suspension for better cornering, the side support is necessary. It also proves to be a useful comfort addition for more sedate driving. The seats are heated, which proved to be a blessing in some serious cold weather. 2006 Dodge Charger SRT8 As I mentioned earlier, the Charger is built on a 120.0-inch wheelbase and is 200 inches long.  These are numbers from the glory days of Charger (which may be coming back). In addition, there's a huge 16.2 cubic foot trunk in the rear that is a practical siz e for carrying all sorts of objects. We used it for some pre-Christmas gift deliveries and, combined with the rear seat we had lots of room. The long wheelbase also provides for excellent rear seat leg- and kneeroom. At no time did I feel cramped sitting back there. Among the options on the Charger were the SRT8 Option Group II package that goes for $1,195. This includes additions to the sound system, a high performance instrument cluster and a security alarm. The SRT Option Group III adds uconnect gps multimedia navigation system, Sirius radio, a uconnect phone, iPod interface and auto-dimming rear view mirror. Supplemental side curtain air bags add an additional $590, while the 20-inch wheels go for $250 and the rear seat video entertainment system adds another $1,450. A lot of these options might not be necessary for the true muscle car addict, although it would be hard to drive around in a Charger SRT8 without the audio system blasting away. 2006 Dodge Charger SRT8During our test week we passed a couple of local Dodge Charger police cars, and while it was tempting to rev the engine to make the men in blue jealous, we did notice the SRT8 attracted attention. Since I was behaving, I assume the attention was more of the "hey police car, look at big brother passing by" type. The Bottom Line: If ever a vehicle was made for Chrysler Corporation's SRT8 transformation it's the Dodge Charger. Here is a sedan that's pretty prosaic in normal trim that's changed into a roaring monster that sounds as if it can tear up any highway. What a blast!

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