The rebirth of the American muscle car is about a lot more than retro. It's about pride. It's about recalling a time when Americans looked down the road to the future with confidence, and they wanted a great big V8 engine to get them there as soon as possible.
It's no wonder the 2008 Ford Mustang Bullitt has our respect. It's the best version yet of the 2005 Ford Mustang, the car that set Detroit on fire again with enthusiasm for good old American muscle. Maybe the fuel-guzzling muscle car won't save Detroit from the challenge to build cars that people need, but it's surely restored the domestic car industry's confidence in its ability to do so. And it's shown that Americans can build cars that are utterly unlike anything you'll find in Stuttgart, Shanghai, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur or any of those other places that economists think they're so clever to know about.
Now that the 2008 Dodge Challenger SRT8 is here, Chrysler is cracking the seal on its own Mopar-branded can of muscle-car whoop-ass to show that it understands what's at stake in the muscle-car sweepstakes. The Bullitt and the Challenger are the two coolest cars in America, and it's only natural to bring them together.
Challenger New vs. Old: Vanishing Point Revisited
"Our sole Challenger has just broken the ring of evil the deep blue meanies
have so righteously wrought — get through 'em baby, get through 'em." —
Super Soul, Vanishing Point 1971
It happens deep in the Nevada desert, just past Austin. On a long, straight
section of road with nothing to lose, our friends in the white 1970 Dodge
Challenger R/T finally put the hammer down. At once, the rawness and purity
of Kowalski's ride pulverizes the well-insulated interior of our 2008 Dodge
Challenger SRT8, shredding the peace inside the modern car's cockpit with
the same brute force Kowalski used to pierce a hole in the cool desert air
38 years ago. Even with my right foot buried, I see nothing but taillights
until they disappear into the desert.
In these few brief seconds, the 2008 Dodge Challenger SRT8 is clearly
defined by its soft edges and quiet Exhaust. Manufacturers don't let us feel cars
raw and unfiltered anymore. Hammering down a desert road with a thin-rimmed
steering wheel and pistol-grip shifter — that's raw. Four hundred and
forty cubic inches and a four-speed — that's raw. Powerslides unhampered
by electronic intervention — that's raw.
In 1970, when Kowalski drove this very road — U.S. Highway 50 through
Nevada — he felt it. And it was raw.
Most Muscle? Camaro SS v Challenger SRT8 v Shelby GT500
2010 Camaro SS vs. 2009
Challenger SRT8 vs. 2010 Shelby GT500
Camaro v Mustang v Challenger:
Hennessey Camaro v
Shelby GT500: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwCFIk0xH_s
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In our recent pony car comparison test, the retro-heavy — and just plain
heavy — 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS walked away with top
honors in its debut. The big V8-powered coupe needed a new challenge. It
was time to refocus the lens. Shoot from a different angle, so to speak.
So we squared the brooding visage of our SS-badged protagonist up against
the cruelest bunch of savages we could find, the range-topping 2009 Dodge
Challenger SRT8 and 2010 Ford Shelby GT500.
2007 Ford Mustang Shelby GT vs. 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
Look no further than the hood scoops on the 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STI and
2007 Ford Shelby GT to find the fundamental difference in their
personalities. It's here that both cars' sense of purpose and ability is
displayed prominently and publicly as a statement of their true character.
Challenger 2.0 - World's 1st Test of Dodge's New Muscle Car
The 2008 Dodge Challenger SRT8 is a muscle car, right? An American muscle
car. So naturally, the first thing I want to do when I jump behind the
wheel is a big American smoky burnout.
MuscleCar Tuner Showdown: HPE650/SuperSnake/SpeedfactorySRT8
We've compared nearly every combination of modern American muscle cars on
the market. Now it's time for the ultimate showdown - Hennessey's Camaro HPE650 vs Shelby's GT500
Super Snake vs Speedfactory's Challenger SRT8. We head to the Dyno, the test track and the
racetrack to determine which of these tuned pony cars reigns supreme.
Read the story here:
Challenger Drag Race! - SE vs R/T vs SRT8
MT Technical Director Frank Markus tests the three 2009 Dodge Challenger
variants - SE, R/T, SRT8 - with a three-way drag race and laps around our
figure eight. Read the story here:
Camaro is King! Mustang vs Challenger vs Camaro
We pit the much-anticipated Chevy Camaro SS against its strongest
competition: the Ford Mustang GT and the Dodge Challenger
R/T. Join as we head to the hills east of San Diego to find out which one
we liked best.
Shot By: Jim Gleason & Mike Suggett
Edited By: Jim Gleason & Mike Suggett
UPDATE: Since the question of price seems to be coming up a lot in the
comments, here are the confirmed prices for all 3 cars (base price / as
Camaro SS: $30,995 /
Challenger R/T: $30,945 / $38,270
Mustang GT: $28,845 /
2008 Dodge Challenger SRT-8 Burnout
This was a media launch of the 2008 Challenger SRT8 at Willow Springs. The
tires had some laps around the track and the only thing they were good for
is what you are looking at. 3 cars were used in this video and all were
UPDATE 7/15/12: 2012 Challenger 392 as well as other SRT cars will be
posted on my channel soon.
Chevy Camaro, Dodge Challenger, and Ford Mustang
Watch our muscle car comparison with this video from Consumer Reports and
get more car info on our website:
http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/cars/index.htm Muscle cars are back! We
take a first look at the new Chevy Camaro, Dodge Challenger, and
Shelby GT500 Crushes Camaro SS! - Drag Race Showdown
When we first pitted the Camaro SS against the Mustang GT, Ford fans complained it
was an unfair race given the horsepower disparity. But
now Ford has tipped the scale way back in it's advantage with the top of
the line supercharged snake, the GT500. We head to the drag strip to see
how the underdog Chevy stacks up.
Shot By: Mike Suggett & Jim Gleason
Edited By: Jim Gleason & Mike Suggett
Mustang vs. Camaro
The Ford Mustang vs. the
Chevrolet Camaro go one
lap around Consumer Reports' auto test track pitting two V6 engines with
6-speed manual transmission and more than 300 horsepower each. Which of
these muscle cars comes out on top? Find out more about the Mustang and the Camaro on our website:
Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 vs. Shelby GT350
Video of our muscle car showdown between the 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392
and the 2012 Shelby GT350. Only 1492 Challengers like this one will be
built, and Shelby has a cap of 2200, with only 500. Read the Dodge
Challenger SRT8 392 vs. Shelby GT350 photos and comparison test here:
2008 Dodge Challenger Burn Out
Get more info on the Dodge Challenger -
2008 Dodge Challenger Burn Out and power slide.
Pony Car Wars! 2011 Ford Mustang GT vs Camaro SS and Challenger SRT8
We pit the brand new 2011 Ford Mustang GT against its V-8 powered
rivals from Chevrolet and Dodge in the ultimate battle for muscle car
Read the full story here:
Shot by: Mike Suggett, Jim Gleason and Duane Sempson
Edited by: Mike Suggett