It’s always fun to get behind the wheel of a Hellcat, whether a 4-door Dodge Charger or what I have this week for review, the 2022 Challenger SRT Hellcat Widebody. Stellantis has hinted that at the end of 2023, the Challenger will go away, but for me, I hope they change their minds.
The big story with every Hellcat lies under the hood where you find the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V8 that is putting out an amazing 717-horses and it puts out 656-pound feet of torque. My tester has the 8-speed automatic transmission with shift paddles. The paddles work great, but depending on the drive mode settings, the transmission shifts hard and fast on its own. 0-to-60 speed is an incredible 3.6 seconds and top speed is 203-miles per hour.
Even under heavy hot summer acceleration, the Hellcat engine stays cooled, thanks to the functional dual snorkel hood scoops, and air dams around the headlights and under the front bumper. The Smoke Snow paint is beautiful with black brake calipers, and a black rear spoiler. The Hellcat emblems on the front fenders demand respect from any would-be racers who pull up next to you.
Moving to the inside, the interior is nicely done and quite spacious. I love the optional Carbon & Suede interior package, and the air-conditioned and heated power seats are very comfortable. The Hellcat comes loaded with just about everything you can imagine, except a moon roof.
The 8.4” Chrysler Uconnect 4C system is terrific as always, easy to operate, and the navigation system works great. The 18-speaker Harmon Kardon audio system sounds terrific and has surround sound and a huge subwoofer in the trunk.
My review vehicle has a backup camera, steering wheel controls, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a Wi-Fi hotspot, voice commands, blind spot monitoring, and remote start.
On the Uconnect 4C screen, you’ll have a blast going through all the apps, especially the Performance Pages.
The gauge cluster is bright, has a 200-mile per hour speedometer, and an extensive driver information center in the middle that is easy to navigate from the flat-bottomed steering wheel. A digital speedometer is always a handy thing to have.
When you get your Challenger Hellcat, you’ll get two keys-one red, one black. The red key unleashes the beast to full horsepower. They don’t even bother to send me the black key anymore, they know it won’t be used.
Hit the SRT button above the air conditioning controls, and this is where you configure how you want the car to perform. Hit custom and you can vary the settings. I like track for some of the settings, and street or sport for others.
You’ve got to do a launch from a dead stop and feel the G-forces pin you to the seat. You also have to try the line lock button. It allows you to do a full throttle burnout with the front brakes locked completely down, but you’ll run through those wide expensive tires quickly if you do. If you decide to do this, take it from me, turn the air conditioning system off, a lesson I learned the hard way when I had the Dodge Challenger Redeye widebody a few years back.
Ride and Drive
Handling is exceptional, the steering is a bit heavy but that comes in handy at times, acceleration is wonderful, and the widebody helps keeps you grounded for traction.
What You'll Pay
Price-wise, my very loaded review car with options has an MSRP of $88,170 and that includes the government’s $2100 gas-guzzler tax. That is a pretty exceptional buy for a street legal race car, that also doubles as a great daily driver.
This car is rated at 13 miles per gallon in town and 21 on the highway, but at least for me, with my driving habits, those are mythical numbers and at the Current $5 per gallon, having fun is going to be expensive.
Still, this car always amazes me. To have that much power, comfort for four and possibly five passengers, and a massive trunk, the Challenger Hellcat Widebody is nothing short of amazing.
- What I Liked Most: Obviously, performance, ride and drive.
- What I would change: Honestly, can’t think of a thing.
- MSRP: Base price $63,530; as equipped $88,170.
- Fuel Economy:Rated at 13 City/21 highway/15 Combined.
- Odometer reading when tested: 5,600 miles.
- Weight: 4,551 pounds.
- Spare tire: Inflator & repair kit.
- Length-Width-Height: 197.5” long/78.3” wide/57.5” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 18.5 gallons with the filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: Not recommended by factory.
- Official Color: Smoke Show.
- 2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat in a few words: A beast on the track, yet a very enjoyable daily driver.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper, with roadside assistance, 5-year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty.
- Final Assembly Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada.
- Manufacturer's website: Dodge