2013-2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe Review

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs

Opening PicThe Dodge Challenger SXT models are here to:

bring all the muscle-car intimidation factor of their pricier peers…

…as well as a heavy dose of American full-size, rear-wheel-drive coupe swagger.

The 2013 – 2014 Challenger SXT Coupe in fact is agile and quick, regardless of its V-6 powerplant.

The Pentastar motor is good for 305 horsepower and a 6.8-second run to 60 mph.

Having a price of under $20,000 nowadays, this particular lovable retro coupe can be a desirable option for many buyers.

This year’s Challenger SXT lineup is available in 3 types:

SXT, SXT Plus and SXT Rallye Redline.

It is worth mentioning that all three types come standard with some respectable feature list that includes 18- or 20-inch black chrome wheels, thumping audio options and a five-speed autobox.

1. 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Exterior

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs

Coming late to the retro styling party, the Dodge Challenger brings back, maybe the least-known pony car nameplate and one from left field since the Hemi ‘Cuda occupies most people’s memory of the third late-1960s contender.

While that year’s Beetle experienced clear modern priorities and updates to its retro style folly…

…Dodge’s team was much more accurate in making a faithful recreation of the old beast, right down to the rolling shoulder and glass of the rear fenders.

Itself a chopped sedan shell, the original Challenger’s proportions were possible with only a 4-inch cut to the larger Charger ’s wheelbase.

On this Challenger you will find a retro styling that is still delightful and a rare sight:

the V-6 cars are just as good looking as the SRT8 and V-8-powered R/T trims when next to boring mainstream sedans of all types.

However, the only thing missing…

…is the V-8’s exhaust burble, but the SXT at least looks the part with a pair of squared chrome tips out back.

Also, the Challenger badge faithfully recreates the original, as also does the sunken quad lamps and the riveted grille.

This Can-Am Supercars look is one shared by the Mustang and Camaro, but none to as menacing an effect as the Dodge.

The lights are extremely dated at this point without the HID lamps from the pricier trims.

At the back of the Challenger, the conventional bulb taillights are a solid-bar design running the full width of the trunk, just like on the originals.

This has a cool look with the central Dodge script written over the clear reverse lights section.

This unique lights are going to be tough to update with LEDs, but this core shape forms the template for the ‘racetrack’ ring of LED lights that look incredible on the Charger and the Dodge Durango.

The Challenger’s wild and retro looks incorporate hood scoops and bulges visible from the cockpit over the long, long hood.

The whole car is almost a perfect stylistic throwback, right down to its aerodynamic performance, unfortunately.

The tasty SXT Rallye Redline package brings a cD of 0.37, far too high compared to the 0.25 of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

A bad drag coefficient score hurts a car’s top speed, mpg and interior refinement.

1.1 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe – Exterior Dimensions:

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs

1.2 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe – Standard Exterior Features:

  • 18-Inch x 7.5-Inch Aluminum Wheels
  • Power Mirrors with Manual Fold-Away
  • Halogen Headlamps
  • Body-Color Door Handles
  • Dual Bright Exhaust Tips
  • Satin Chrome Grille
  • Variable Intermittent Windshield Wipers
  • Body-Color Fascias
  • Bright Fuel Filler Door
  • Front and Rear Solar Control Glass
  • 20-Inch x 8.0-Inch Black Chrome Clad Alum Wheels (SXT Rallye Redline only)

1.3 Gallery: Exterior

2. 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Interior

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Interior, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs

The 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT interior one quite unique and sinister place to be, having a high cowl and gun-slit side glass that rolls down just in the front.

This car is pretty large with a restricted view from many angles, but that is the price of style.

The Camaro is probably even worse regarding the stoplight visibility scale. (Putting your head down to discover if a light has turned green, to get a view that is otherwise blocked by the low windshield header.)

The challenger’s cabin has a big option in the name of four levels of stereo upgrades and at least $600 to get the least expensive touchscreen display, HDD-based navigation unit.

The second upgrade arrives with a six-speaker, 276-watt stereo from Boston Acoustics that comes standard with the Rallye Redline package.

If you go step above, there is the Uconnect 730 HDD navigation with 400-plus watts through the BA speakers and a subwoofer.

The top option will cost you an extra $2,000, and include an 18-speaker, multi-subwoofer system from Harman Kardon.

The top radios lose the trunk’s mini spare, replacing it with the dreaded tire repair kit.

The overall steering wheel, dashboard design and gauges are almost cookie-cutter generic in its shapes and materials, having missed the latest NVH clinic for the bulk of the Chrysler and Dodge lineup over the last few years.

Regarding the dull cockpit there is one bright spot…

…the optional Mopar T-bar handles in a polished finish, and this comes together with the very-affordable Mopar Interior Group for only $945.

The Mopar kit also brings floor mats, custom sills, bright pedals and a custom car cover.

Speaking about the back, even with the Challengers imposing overall length and width, room is pretty tight on legs and heads.

Sitting sideways across the width of the seat probably looks like the most likely position, but not a safe or comfortable one for any length of time.

Finally, the Rallye Redline package delivers a yummy pick of leather seat colors, with the lipstick red shown in these photos a no-cost addition.

A matching Mopar wheel accessory completes the interior drama camp, but still feels less special than the Camaro and Mustang  .

2.1 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe – Interior Dimensions:

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Interior, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT specs

2.2 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe – Standard Interior Features:

  • Multimedia Uconnect 130 CD/MP3, 6 Speakers, Steering Wheel Mounted Audio Controls, Audio Jack Input for Mobile Devices
  • Power Windows with Front One-Touch-Down Feature
  • Power Trunk Lid Release
  • Speed Sensitive Power Locks
  • Active Front Head Restraints
  • Cloth Low-Back Bucket Seats, Power 6-Way Driver Seat, Power 4-Way Driver Lumbar Adjust
  • Rear 60 / 40 Folding Seat; Rear Armrest with Cup Holder Seat
  • Keyless Entry; Keyless Go – Remote Proximity Keyless Entry, Sentry Key Theft Deterrent System
  • Leather-Wrapped Wheel and Shift Knob
  • Air Conditioning with Automatic Temperature Control
  • Illuminated Cup Holders, LED Illuminated Interior Door Handles
  • Tilt / Telescoping Steering Column
  • Electronic Vehicle Information Center, Traveler / Mini Trip Computer

2.3 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe – Optional Interior Features:

  • Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror w/ Microphone
  • Uconnect 130 CD/MP3: 6 Boston Acoustics Speakers with 276-Watt Amplifier, Voice Command with Bluetooth Voice Calls, Bluetooth Streaming Audio, SiriusXM Satellite Radio w/ 1-Yr Radio Subscription
  • Audio Jack Input for Mobile Devices, Remote USB Port, and Steering Wheel Mounted Audio Controls
  • Heated Front Seats
  • Leather-Trimmed Bucket Seats
  • Uconnect 430 CD/DVD/MP3/HDD With Sound Group II: 40 GB Hard Drive with 28 GB Available, 368-Watt Amplifier, 6.5-Inch Touch Screen Display, 7 Boston Acoustics Speakers with Subwoofer ($1,295)
  • Uconnect 430 SAT/CD/DVD/MP3/HDD/NAV ($595)
  • Uconnect 730 SAT/CD/DVD/MP3/HDD/NAV ($790)
  • Harman Kardon Premium Audio System ($1,995): 18 Premium Speakers including Subwoofers, Harman Kardon Logic7 GreenEdge Amplifier, Delete Spare Tire
  • Electronics Convenience Group ($750): Power Heated Mirrors with Manual Fold-Away, Remote Start System, Security Alarm, Temperature and Compass Gauge, Tire Pressure Monitoring Display, Universal Garage Door Opener
  • MOPAR Interior Appearance Group ($945): Bright Door Sill Guards, Bright Pedal Kit, Car Cover, Premium Floor Mats with Logo, T-Grip Shifter by Mopar

2.4 Gallery: Interior

3. Drivetrain, Suspension And Brakes

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Exterior, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe

We have already pointed out that this Challenger is huge, and this is something we all know.

Even with a V-8, it lags behind the top performance trims coming from Chevrolet and Ford.

Does that make it cheaper and much-lighter V-6 sibling the runt of the pack?

In terms of missing Hemi rumbles and burbles at all revs, yes…

…the lowest priced Challengers look incomplete as a red-blooded American coupe without those audible clues.

For any of other purposes, the V-6 Challenger is in fact the pick of the group with a light helm and suspension settings that are a much softer than the performance variants demand.

Combined with the standard wheel sizes, the pillowy ride is comforting and relaxed.

And after the big girl gets moving, the things get improved even more.

Losing 300 pounds from the hood improves the weight distribution to an impressive 52:48 front to rear ratio, and makes the Challenger easier to hustle with less brake strain and very nearly zero tail-out potential.

The absence of a dangerous spin on your mind can in fact make the big Challenger less difficult to hurl around with confidence, however, with any big changes of direction appear some lurching body roll and heave.

At the track, the Challenger V-6 can strike 60 mph in  6.8-second before topping-out at a lackluster 114 mph top speed.

You can thank those late-60s curves together with the poor wind tunnel score for part of that problem.

The Challenger V-6 has only 3,800 pounds weighs, which actually is fairly trim compared with the Cadillac ATS V-6 and definitely less heavy than anything else that have an 85-inch width from mirror to mirror.

Fewer pounds and the EPA’s 60-mph testing help give the auto-only Challenger V-6 a 17 mpg city and 28 mpg highway rating, but expect much worse than that at 85 mph cruising speeds.

3.1 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT – Mechanical Details:

Mechanical Details

 

4. Safety

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Safety

For this Challenger we can say that is quite safe, a final gift from its Mercedes-designed platform and crash structures.

It arrives with six standard airbags that are paired with active anti-whiplash headrests and a number of unique braking enhancements.

Also, the Challenger comes with EBD, ABS and Brake assist (this is case with all new cars for sale in the U.S. since 2012), but also brings in hill start assist that is here to prevent any creep or rollback, rain brake assist to pre-dry the discs and ready brake assist that primes the brakes for full potential stopping power in case a driver suddenly takes his foot off the gas. Also, ready Alert Braking provides a split-second advantage that help’s the car to stop quicker and more securely.

4.1 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT – Standard Safety Features:

  • Active Front Head Restraints
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • All Speed Traction Control
  • Advanced Multistage Front Airbags, Supplemental Front Seat-Mounted Side Airbags, Supplemental Side-Curtain Front and Rear Airbags
  • Brake Assist
  • Ready Alert Braking
  • Hill Start Assist
  • Anti-Lock 4-Wheel Disc Brakes
  • Rain Brake Support

5. Pricing

Here is how nowadays’ 2014 Dodge Challenger price goes:

Challenger SXT: Around $20,000

Challenger SXT Plus: Around $23,000

Challenger SXT Rallye Redline: Around $24,000

6. Conclusion

2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Exterior, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Specs, 2014 Dodge Challenger SXT Coupe

This Challenger had been probably the last Chrysler passion project…

…before the financial crisis iced all jokes and unprofitable cars like a deep freeze.

Born into a troubled world, the Challenger would make some buyers much happier if it was all V-8 engines and without the affordable SXT trims shown here.

The SXT is a critical part of the image boost that justifies this car’s existence.

Pony-cars constantly find themselves in flux and we can never be sure if they will be around tomorrow.

This can make them a lot like the ice-cold bullies who love the muscle coupes’ rude dude image.

As the case of the Mustang and especially the Camaro have tried to gentrify themselves with track packs and BMW-challenging performance driving styles…

…the Challenger keeps its Luke Duke charm.

Fortunately, the V-6 Challengers are still quick enough to escape Boss Hog and the Sheriff – but this time as a 2014 SXT Rallye Redline with a Mopar T-handle chrome shifter.

 

Conclusion

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