114 2014 sRT sPecial
he SRT Charger is living, rumbling
proof that having a family and owning a
muscle car aren’t mutually exclusive.
Sure, the dictionary will tell you that this
category is for two-door sports coupes,
but the car guys at SRT beg to differ.
If your car can launch to 60mph from
standstill in under five seconds, complete
the standing quarter-mile in less than
13 seconds, and do it all to the thumping
soundtrack of a 392cu.in. Hemi, you’re
in muscle car territory, regardless of
the car’s five seats and four doors. The
SRT Charger is exactly that car.
What the sporting driver won’t
necessarily tell you is that this is also a
car that is comfortable, muted and benign
if the occasion calls for it, carrying
through the traits from the less powerful
Charger models. But while so many
performance cars with dual personality
simply flip-flop between Dr. Jekyll and
Mr. Hyde, the SRT Charger’s ability to
retain its composure while being put
through its paces is unusual.
To expand the Charger’s appeal, SRT
has made it ever more easy to pick your
variants and add options. The Premium
model has all the bells and whistles, and
of particular interest to enthusiastic
drivers (including RACER readers) is the
adaptive damping system. It can be left
in “Auto” mode for a sporty but compliant
ride, firmed up with “Sport” mode, or
switched to full-rich “Track” mode. Making
that latter move will also alter the nature
of the five-speed auto box, with swifter
changes but also holding gears, allowing
the driver to take full advantage of the
power throughout the Hemi’s rev range.
The Hemi engine in 5.7-liter ( 348cu.in.)
form puts out 375hp, powers R/T models
of the Challenger and Charger, and is also
available in Chrysler’s 300 S, C and John
Varvatos Luxury Edition. SRT models are
powered by a bigger daddy, the 6.4-liter
( 392cu.in.) unit (ABOVE) with 470hp.
THE HEMI HEARTBEAT