We can argue about muscle car supremacy in the US and the world all we want.
Or talk about how innovative design is the future of the automotive industry.
But if one thing hasn’t changed since 2008 till now it’s the fine looking 2015 Dodge Challenger R/T.
And this, of course, is not a bad thing.
Apparently Dodge loves to play with the market and it’s flexible state.
They knew that they needed something to battle the Ford Mustang’s classy retro look and at the same time there was trouble at Chevy’s camp with the Camaro hiatus going on.
WARNING: There are two galleries here, so don’t miss the latter one it’s bigger.
A lot of people found comfort and performance in the 376 horsepower 5.7-liter Hemi-powered R/T version that debuted back in 2009.
They loved it so much that they even preferred it over the slightly faster 425 horsepower 6.1-liter engine of the SRT8.
Interestingly enough in the years to follow…
…the Hemi got even bigger and now with it’s 6.4 liters cranks up a tire-burning 485 horsepower.
This particular model with the mighty Hemi engine (SRT8) eventually got a new name dubbed the SRT 392.
Also, Dodge decided that it needed much more than this version so this year they introduced two new members to the big Challenger family of Dodge:
The 6.4-liter R/T Scat Pack and, of course, the 707-hp Hellcat.
With these new cars, the 5.7-liter R/T is now officially the fourth quickest Challenger model to date.
Hectic ain’t it.
Still can Kick a High Punch
Every Dodge aficionado will agree with us that the 5.7-liter R/T wasn’t slow back in 2009...
…and hell, it’s not slow now.
The five-seater weighing 4100 pounds can achieve 60 mph in just under 5.1 seconds, which is exactly the same as before.
It also makes the quarter-mile clock in 13.7 seconds at 103 mph, which just 0.1-second and 3-mph slower than the 2009 model.
If we have to compare it to the mighty Scat Pack the R/T is of course tad weaker because this model hits 60 in 4.2 seconds and runs the quarter in 12.6 at 114 mph.
We have the Tremec TR-6060 six-speed to thank for the high performance which brings just enough juice to match the car’s aggressive engine and looks.
While the R/T grips on corners very well…
…we can’t say that it’s glued to the asphalt.
Test show that despite riding on the optional Super Track Pak suspension, which actually makes the car go even lower by half an inch and the 20 inch wheels are wrapped with 245/45 Z-rated Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar tires, the test car managed to pull 0.89g on the skidpad.
With 410 lb-ft of torque at 4300 rpm, the R/T’s rear is boosting the throttle to the maximum that we would expect in every classic muscle-car.
Aficionados enjoy this and all the others watch in awe, of course if you know what you’re doing with all that muscle power.
Like every lucky guy or gal that has a Challenger equipped with the Super Track Pak, the R/T can be proud of the steering which is as sharp as it is communicative.
The braking is fine tuned and improved.
From a 70 mph, it now goes for six feet to a 167 feet in favor of the 2009 model.
That’s still somewhat longer than the Scat Pack, as its four-piston Brembo calipers facilitate rock-star 154-foot stops.
What we especially like about the R/T Challenger is that the exterior design hasn’t changed one bit since it first appeared in 2008.
The beautiful ’71-look grille innards and the split LED taillamps are the only major distinctions for the new 2015.
Even without a big change in the design the Challenger still looks like it got out of the production line yesterday.
Retro Modern Interior
While the outside is untacked and under the hood lies the same engine from the couple of years back…
…in the cabin you can expect a drastic update.
Seven years ago, the interior of the Challenger R/T was drastically cheaper maybe because Dodge wasn’t that sure they would extend this line in the next period.
The refreshed interior is not far from the tree and it still carries its retro flavor around.
This is attributed to the dashboard inspired by the ’71 Challenger.
But of course, the latest Uconnect infotainment and navigation system gives it a much more contemporary feel spiced up with the Challenger’s Performance Pages app.
This is your monitor to the whole car performance which you can upload to the web and have all of your stats in one place.
This feature is also included in the Super Track Pak.
We can say for sure that the whole cabin is also quite accommodating and inclusionary even given the that the car is basically a shortened Charger sedan.
The comfortable front seats and a wide, three-seat rear bench are quite enjoyable and spacious which makes the Challenger R/T the most usable five-seat two-door coupe in the U.S.
The overall score of the R/T is that it got killer looks, goes fast and offers excellent performance and at the same time it delivers an entertaining driving experience.
1000 buck upgrade
The punch line is that the Challenger R/T is worth the money…
…but you are practically getting an enhanced 2008 version.
Even though the 2015 Mustang and the Chevy Camaro SS are lighter cars the heavy Challenger R/T still feels like a beast.
Back in time, the car’s base price was $31,540 and has only risen for $1000 in seven years to around $32,790.
We can only wait and see if Dodge will replace the Challenger in two years time and will stand on the challenge itself to make the decision of whether they will compete with the Camaro SS and the Mustang GT with a newer version of the Challenger or will they construct an even lighter and powerful vehicle that will come in place of the Challenger with a refreshed car line and with it lure buyers away from Ford and Chevrolet.
And we can also expect the next iterations not to differ from the heavyweight champion look of the Challenger in the next two years.