Pricing for the Charger starts at $38,395 in Canada, $30,755 in the US.
The Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye starts at $103,545 in Canada, $81,455 in the US.
This Charger is one of the final 4-door muscle cars as we once knew them.
Truth be told, Dodge will never let you forget. For just over seven years now, or roughly the average length of a marriage, Dodge has built a legend around its Hellcat engine. No matter its output or what vehicle it finds itself in, the supercharged V8 transforms it into a respected and high-performance car or SUV. In the case of the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody, few are as celebrated and revered.
If we put all the cards on the table, the Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody has only one competitor and that’s the limited-availability Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing. Both cars cater to the same type of buyer, but the Caddy is a different beast in that it’s more refined and, remarkably, is offered with a manual transmission. Although it looks the business, the SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody visually commands more attention.
It’s widebody nostalgia on four wheels
For the entire week, I got thumbs up from, well, old guys, all the old guys. It does get second glances from kids, but this car speaks volumes with those who remember the first golden muscle car era – we are living in the second golden era BTW. The combined 8.8 cm (3.5 inches) of widebody and the Smoke Show colour has dream-build status written all over it for these gentlemen. As proof supporting the fact that I am not so old, I’d consider any other shade than black, the greys, and white including Frostbite pearl and Hellraisin.
The cabin is far less expressive but still not without indicators that this isn’t a regular Charger. Unlike other recent Stellantis products, the SRT Hellcat retains the services of the 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen display, compared to the recent 10.1-inch unit in the Durango. Even so, it works quite well. The cooled and heated Demonic red laguna leather seats are comfortable for daily streetlight racing and the overall fit and finish are good.
To a certain extent, the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody is almost cartoonish. The massive 20×11-inch black alloy wheels, fat-flared wheel arches, and bulging hood are exaggerated as they would in a rendering. Perhaps it’s this fantasy-to-reality look that speaks to fans and potential buyers.
Or perhaps it’s the Hellcat. In normal guise, the supercharged 6.2-litre Hemi Hellcat V8 pumps out 717 horsepower and 650 lb.-ft. of torque. But this isn’t a regular Hellcat, it’s a Hellcat Redeye which means that in this family sedan, it produces 797 horsepower and 707 lb.-ft. of torque. For most people, this will be the most powerful car they will ever drive and own for only $100,000.
But it’s not without some setbacks. The Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Redeye needs to be respected otherwise it will bite you. This car will cover the 0-60 mph sprint in an impressive 3.6 seconds. In contrast, the 500-lb heavier Durango SRT Hellcat, with “only” 710 horsepower, launches to 60 mph in only 3.5 seconds. What this tells you is that the Charger puts as much effort into moving forward as it does in managing all the power.
Holding the throttle to the floorboards for more than six or seven seconds requires some serious cojones and plenty of room. The 8-speed automatic transmission is governed by witchcraft as it somehow survives the tsunami of torque, like a scalding potato, and sends it all to the poor unsuspecting 305-section rear tires. Any and all launches must be completed with care. Even with a rolling start, both hands must be on the straight wheel otherwise prepare yourself to make corrections.
The good stuff on the road
The madness that is the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Redeye is what feeds the power addiction. The noises produced by the charger, the V8, and the exhaust are like opioids for the ears – a shot of good stuff is always only a throttle-stab away.
Once more, the Redeye’s great trick is its ability to be driven with ease, although there’s no getting around how intimidating the big sedan really is. The adjustable Bilstein dampers, via the drive modes, are extremely likable in Street (i.e., normal or comfort). Ride quality is civilized and comfortable, and best of all, even under heavy duress, they remained composed and keep the Charger’s tires in perfect contact with the road.
Through the SRT Drive Modes, the driver can customize every setting. In my experience, full power, aka 797 horsepower, transmission in Sport, paddle shifters on, and everything else in Street is the ideal combination. Also ideal are the massive Brembo brakes. Pedal response is comforting especially when jumping from the “gas” to the brakes in the hopes that the patrol car in the opposite lane did not spot you…
Once more, I’d still and always SRT 392
There’s no doubt that a Hellcat makes any Dodge great. But, as always, with great power comes the incredibly difficult responsibility that is not using it at all times. It’s for this reason that the 392 and its 485 horsepower and 475 lb.-ft. of torque are far more reasonable and, at least partially, less likely to land me in jail. Then, there’s the matter that the Scat Pack 392 is about $50,000 less expensive than the $103,545 ($104,700 as tested). And no, no widebody.
The 2021 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Redeye is one hell of a muscle car and I can’t wait to see what comes next from Dodge’s “Never Lift” campaign.