Author Topic: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining  (Read 8782 times)

Offline JeffAARy

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 612
  • Orange Mopars Drive Me Wild
The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« on: July 01, 2008 - 12:04:33 pm »
I was just going to add to the other thread, but I figured my opinion would just get lost in the mix.

Most of the people spouting opinions on here haven't driven or even sat in a new Challenger.  As the owner of a 2007 SRT-8 Charger, and having owned 5 E-bodies, I think the new Challenger is great and everyone *****ing about it should shut up.  Here's my response to the issues in the other threads.

1)  The new Challenger is big.
Yes it is bigger than the 1970 - 1974 Challenger, and that is a good thing.  You are much safer in the car because of it's size.  A year ago I went from an SRT-4 Neon to the Charger SRT-8.  I feel a hell of a lot safer in the Charger due to the size.  I didn't feel unsafe in the Neon when I owned it, but I don't think I could go back now.  A few weeks ago I sold my Omni GLHS.  I hadn't driven it in years.  When I pulled it out of storage I couldn't believe I used to drive it on I-10 in traffic every day at 95 mph.  Felt like I was riding on the front bumper.  I definitely feel safer in the Charger than I do in my 71 Cuda. 

2)  The new Challenger is heavy.
Again, this is a good thing.  When I was looking at Chargers last year I read an article on-line that had appeared in one of the magazines where they recreated the chase scene from Bullitt with a new Mustang GT and a new Charger R/T.  In the specs area they compared the 1968 and 2006 Chargers.  When I saw that the new Charger was 500 lb heavier than the '68, the engineer in me said WTF.  With the advances in lightweight materials, how can this be?  Then it dawned on me that the new Charger weighs more beacuse it has airbags (front and side), ABS, traction control, gigantic disc brakes for 20 x 9 rims, and more safety items that the E-bodies don't have.  So part of the weight issue is items that are keeping you and your family alive in a crash, and preventing crashes in the first place.  The other things adding to the weight are a 6-CD player, DVD player, satellite radio, power windows, dual zone AC, heated seats, and other amenities that make the driving experience a hell of a lot more enjoyable.

3)  I can build a modernized Challenger cheaper than a new Challenger.
Uh, no you can't.  For the same money (not including your time) you may be able to stuff a 6.1 Hemi and a Tremec in the engine bay and upgrade the suspension and brakes, but you won't have nearly the same car.  I don't see any modernized Mopars in the mags that have front/side-curtain airbags, ABS, traction control, or any other safety items.  Also, pieceing together suspension/brake components is not the same as a car that is designed as a system.  If you want a modernized E-body that is kind of designed as a complete car your best option is XV motorsports, and one of their cars will run you six figures and it still won't have the safety features or amenities the new Challenger has for 1/5 the price.

4)  The back seat isn't big enough.
The irony is people are complaining the car is too big but they also complain there isn't enough leg room in the back.  Last time I checked, the leg room in the E-bodies is lacking.  When I take my 2-year-old twins for a ride in my 71 Cuda, they have to curl their legs up in their car seats because their feet hit the seat backs.  Whenever I give rides I limit it to three people because you can't realistically get four adults in the car. The person in the back usually sits in the middle with their feet on either side of the console.  If you need comfortable seating for four or more, the ne Challenger isn't the car for you and you should be looking at the Charger or Grand Cherokee.  But an E-body isn't for you either.

5)  When I put the old and new Challenger side-by-side they don't look the same.
Don't put them side-by-side.  Yes the new car looks like it could swallow an old one when they are in the same shot, but when you look at the new Challenger by itself is there really any doubt what the car is?  I think it looks a lot like the old Challenger, but more modern.  Why would you want it to look exactly like the old Challenger anyway?  We already have those.  Using the logic that the new Challenger should look exactly like the old one means that the 71 Cuda should have looked like the 70, and I'm pretty sure there's quite a few people on this board that are happy the 71 Cuda looks the way it does.

The bottom line is despite the new Challenger being bigger and heavier than the E-bodies, it will runs circles around any old Mopar.  It is quicker in the 1/4 than any factory stock vintage Mopar (sorry, but any vintage mag that tells you a Hemicuda could run low 13's or high 12's had a specially prepped car that most certainly did not come right off the production line), but it also handles and stops in about half the distance.  It also gets twice the gas mileage.  The new car also has all the safety features and amenities mentioned previously.  When I took the SRT-8 on the Phoenix-Vegas cruise for Mopars at the strip, the only cars that could keep up with me were the drag cars being trailered.  Many vintage Mopars wanted to see what my car could do and all they saw was the Charger logo on my trunk.  While they were admiring my tail lights, getting wind/sunburn/dehydrated from the desert heat with the windows down, and wondering when the AM radio would be able to pick up another station and put it out through a single dash speaker, my family was enjoying the dual zone AC, the adults were listening to symphony-hall-quality satellite radio with a selection of about 200 stations, and the kids were watching movies and playing video games in the back on the DVD player.  We continued doing that in the comfort of our car while we watched everyone else fill up their gas tanks.

My suggestion is you go try one of the new Challengers before you bash it.  If you need seating for four, try a Charger.  I love E-bodies and will own them until I die, but I will never use one for daily transportation.  The new cars are better.  Period.  Go find out for yourself.




Offline AllGreen70RT

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 157
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2008 - 12:16:43 pm »
Bravo :thumbsup:

Offline 72hemi

  • Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 4811
  • MEMBER SINCE JANUARY 2006
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2008 - 12:30:11 pm »
You make some excellent points, I have seen the car in person and I have driven SRT 8 (as well as the rest of the SRT lineup) on the track (not the Challenger yet but planning on it in November but don't expect it to perform much different than the Charger) and love how they perform and love the size of the Charger. I have in the past fit comfortably 4 adults in my Challenger and I know there is no way I could that with a new one, its just not going to happen especially with the size of the seats. I think a slightly smaller size would have been better for the exterior of the Challenger that's just my personal preference (I know that contradicts the interior statement but they did it in 1970). Yes there is a lot of additional weight from the safety features and it nothing a little performance tweaking and new rear end gears won't fix. I'm sorry but with owning an original it's kind of hard if I purchased a new one not to park it next to it. Yes if I bought a car built by XV it would cost 6 figures and not have the safety features, but I would build it myself and save a ton of money (I have already run all the numbers and would come out ahead) because I don't need air bags, abs or that other stuff new cars are required to have (I hate airbags and wish I could easily remove them from my cars). I drive an SRT 4 now daily and have driven larger cars as well and don't feel any safer, if anything with the smaller car I am able to react quicker to a situation. The new Challenger is a nice car and I commend Chrysler for bringing it back as a retro design, but for me the Charger is the way to go for sure. Not trying to cause problems, just hopefully explaining my position better.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2008 - 12:32:50 pm by 72hemi »
1972 Dodge Challenger 340 6 Pack 4-speed
1996 Dodge Viper GTS Coupe

Offline matt63

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1855
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2008 - 12:36:02 pm »
What about 6) It's ugly ?  :)  Kidding aside, this forum is about discussing the likes and dislikes.  Everyone has got an opinion and none of them are wrong.  I'm disappointed with the styling but I never considered buying one anyway.  It's a depreciating asset like every other new car.  I can't disagree with points 1 - 4.  I really think/hope that no one thinks that the new Challenger is meant to be a replacement or a  modern copy of the old.  In my opinion they are totally different cars that will be bought by totally different buyers.

Matt in Edmonton

'68 Valiant
'73 Cuda 340 4 speed (408) SOLD

Offline 72hemi

  • Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 4811
  • MEMBER SINCE JANUARY 2006
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2008 - 12:50:51 pm »
It should be a copy of the original, but it would have been nice for it to not look like a puffy version of the original. For those that have them or are getting them I hope you enjoy them at least half as much as I enjoy my e bodies.
1972 Dodge Challenger 340 6 Pack 4-speed
1996 Dodge Viper GTS Coupe

Offline FJ5_440

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 879
  • Wisconsin
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2008 - 02:50:40 pm »
Long live the Challenger!

First off I love the new Challenger.  I plan to own one fairly soon.  You make some really good points about the car, and I agree that for an everyday driver "The new cars are better."

Some of your assertions are, in my opinion, ridiculous when applied to a car marketed as a performance car.
  Quote:
   1)  The new Challenger is big.
   Yes it is bigger than the 1970 - 1974 Challenger, and that is a good thing.


Unless the increase in size is to enable the use of a superior powerplant, handling system, braking system, or to meet a sanctioning bodies rule book, this is never true in a performance oriented vehicle.  While I would feel safer driving through traffic in a Humvee, I would certainly never buy one in an attempt to satisfy my love of performance cars.

   Quote:
  2)  The new Challenger is heavy.
  Again, this is a good thing.


Again, this is silly unless the increase in weight is because of the use of a superior powerplant, handling system, braking system, or to meet a sanctioning bodies rule book.  ALL car manufacturers go through great expense to reduce the weight of their vehicles as best they can.
The Challenger is big and heavy because it had to be, not because it was better that way.  Thank God they found a way to build one at all.

Before you write me off as an old school "new car hater" please be aware that I also love my 2004 GTO and always said that it does everything better than my 69 GTO but I would like it much better if it were lighter and less ugly.

I have flown the New Performance Cars Rule banner for many years now and agree that they are often faster, almost invariably handle much better, and are more comfy for everyday use.  Weird how I still trade them in every two years or so and move on while my old cars tend to stick around.

I highly recommend getting a new Challenger if you have only 1 space to put a car and 40-50 grand to spend.
If you have space for 2 cars, and 40-50 grand to spend, get a classic Challenger and a gently used Grand Caravan with DVD and all the airbags you can handle.  If you can swing the extra cash, a classic Challenger and a New Challenger would make for a nice set up.

The cars are really like comparing new music with classic hits.  There is alot of new music out every day.  All of it uses better technology and has better digital sound quality than the oldies.  Some of it is really good (like the New Challenger) and will probably become a classic in its own right.  Comparing even the best top ten song on the chart today to a classic song is fruitless because you can't account for personal taste.  I like some of the new stuff by Coldplay and they may very well have what it takes- but they ain't Zepplin yet.
** Shane **

Offline JeffAARy

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 612
  • Orange Mopars Drive Me Wild
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2008 - 03:34:20 pm »
I don't need air bags, abs or that other stuff new cars are required to have (I hate airbags and wish I could easily remove them from my cars). I drive an SRT 4 now daily and have driven larger cars as well and don't feel any safer, if anything with the smaller car I am able to react quicker to a situation.

John:

I find this to be a very curious statement considering that your current SRT-4 is a replacement for one that was totalled in a single-car accident.  If I recall correctly, your first SRT-4 went out of control on a wet road and (according to you) you weren't driving like a maniac.  That probably would not have happened in an SRT-8 with standard traction control and electronic stability.  You don't have to react quickly if you aren't out of control in the first place.....

I bought my SRT-8 after I got T-boned in my SRT-4.  If you had seen the proximity of the damage to where my two-year old daughter's head would have been if she was in the car (dropped off at day care 10 minutes earlier), you might have a different opinion of air bags.

Offline DAYTONA

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1760
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2008 - 03:38:05 pm »
...I love the new one...drive it everyday, everywhere I go....it's not an old Challenger, and I'm glad....cant use and abuse the old ones like the 08...tear it up, buy another....they're makin em everyday(just like 1970 all over again)

Offline 72hemi

  • Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 4811
  • MEMBER SINCE JANUARY 2006
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2008 - 03:48:54 pm »
My old SRT wasn't damaged that bad (non of the glass was broke, the air bags didn't deploy) but every panel managed to get some form of damage due to driving into large bushes and the engine cradle cracked from basically offroading bringing the damage above the "total a car" limit from my insurance company. I was unharmed and actually drove the car off the scene without a problem. Which is why I purchased another one. When I was referring to reacting quickly was more in situations where other cars are involved and I can maneauver my SRT-4 around a situation like that easier than a larger SRT-8 could. As far as air bags go some love them some hate them. I happen to hate them. I don't know how an SRT-8's stability control would handle a situation with a blowout (and come to find out more than a half inch of standing water on the raodway because Caltrans did a construction project that resulted in standing water instead of it running off) but I'll bet it would be similar to what I experienced in my SRT-4, maybe not as bad, but I would bet if I had been in a Charger I still would have been involved in an accident, it was just one of those situations.
1972 Dodge Challenger 340 6 Pack 4-speed
1996 Dodge Viper GTS Coupe

Offline Johnny Cuda

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 268
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2008 - 05:37:05 pm »
"I think the new Challenger is great and everyone *****ing about it should shut up."

That would be a great Ad campaign for Dodge. It's original, it would appeal to the more mature buyer, it sounds like advice from an informed buyer, obviously a statement from someone who has done tons of research, answers alot of questions I may have had about the car, and it has intimidated me enough to go spend $40,000 dollars on it! Thanks for opening my eyes I gotta have one now! :blah:
« Last Edit: July 01, 2008 - 05:42:59 pm by Johnny Cuda »

Offline ntstlgl1970

  • Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 2204
  • T a c o c a t
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2008 - 06:01:48 pm »
Hi Jeff,

You raise some valid points about the new challenger. I have to admit I'm a little disappointed in the weight of the car. At the same time though I can understand why it is this way given that it is built upon an existing platform instead of a clean sheet new car. For comparison a shelby GT500 mustang coupe is 200 lbs lighter than the Challenger. If it was a clean sheet design maybe they could make it a few hundred pounds lighter, but from an economy of scale standpoint, I doubt that Chrysler will be able to sell as many Challengers as Ford does of Mustangs to justify that kind of engineering expense. That being said, would I buy a mustang over the Challenger?

Uh, NO!

I'm glad Chrysler built this thing and when I get my car done I am seriously considering an 09 RT M/T.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2008 - 06:15:26 pm by ntstlgl1970 »
70 Cuda, 7.0L Gen-III Hemi, Viper T56 w/9310 gearset, 3.91's, Megasquirt MS3x v3.57, Innovate wideband, Firm Feel upper arms, torsion bars, springs and strut rods, QA1 DA shocks. I did everything on this car except the fancy paint stuff and I drive it...and I can't seem to stop messing with it....

Offline Carlwalski

  • C-C.com Expert
  • ********
  • Posts: 20664
    • Carlwalski.Com
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2008 - 06:09:54 pm »



From day one I have been for it and still am, 100%. Opinions are one thing but to openly dis the car altogether is just wrong. I think they did a great job of designing the Challenger, better than the Charger, yes?! At the end of the day we should all be happy this thread and others like it aren't "I wish" threads begging, calling and emailing Dodge to make something for us, shucks, sometimes no matter how hard companies try they will never please everyone. They listened, designed and made the bastard, move on, get over it and support Mopar for what they've done.

Offline MEK-Dangerfield

  • C-C.com Expert
  • ********
  • Posts: 20946
  • I don't get NO respect! Member since 1/25/2002
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2008 - 07:02:30 pm »


From day one I have been for it and still am, 100%. Opinions are one thing but to openly dis the car altogether is just wrong. I think they did a great job of designing the Challenger, better than the Charger, yes?! At the end of the day we should all be happy this thread and others like it aren't "I wish" threads begging, calling and emailing Dodge to make something for us, shucks, sometimes no matter how hard companies try they will never please everyone. They listened, designed and made the bastard, move on, get over it and support Mopar for what they've done.


   :iagree:   :iagree:   :iagree:


OK,

   I look at the new Challenger, and say I would put some side stripe on it, but REALLY, why complain?? It's Here!!   :clapping:   :woo:   :woohoo:


Yes, Ford totally nailed it with the new Mustang, but I think we will see in a few years the Chevy guys hate the new Camaro. 



  Mike

Mike

1970 Challenger - SOLD
2016 SXT+.  1 of 524 SXT+'s in Plumb-crazy for 2016.

Offline ntstlgl1970

  • Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 2204
  • T a c o c a t
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #13 on: July 01, 2008 - 07:10:14 pm »
I think the Challenger is going to be the last one of these retro cars to go over well. I think the camaro is going to be too late. I wouldn't be surprised if GM dropped it.
70 Cuda, 7.0L Gen-III Hemi, Viper T56 w/9310 gearset, 3.91's, Megasquirt MS3x v3.57, Innovate wideband, Firm Feel upper arms, torsion bars, springs and strut rods, QA1 DA shocks. I did everything on this car except the fancy paint stuff and I drive it...and I can't seem to stop messing with it....

Offline Goehner

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 345
  • 392 IE
Re: The New Challenger Is Awesome - Quit Your Whining
« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2008 - 10:40:30 pm »
I haven't even seen the new Challenger in person but plenty of pictures. I can tell you that it is awesome! If I had the cash, I would have one soon. Hoping they actually make a SRT8 ragtop in 2010, and I have the cash, it will be sitting in my garage.
392 Edition on order
08 Mega Cab 3500 SRW 6.7 CTD, 2" Leveling kit, 33" Mickey Thompson MTZ
05 Durango Limited, Yea, it's got a HEMI!!