Edmunds Follow-Up Test - 2007 Dodge Charger SRT-8 Super Bee

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by TriShield, Jun 10, 2007.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    1968 All Over Again

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    The Dodge-signature look is supplemented by functional hood scoop for intake air, plus ducts in the airdam to cool the front brakes.

    By Joe Oldham, Contributor
    Date posted: 06-07-2007

    6.1-liter Hemi V8 - 425 horsepower - 420 lb-ft of torque - 20-inch wheels

    This is a road test of a tape stripe. A black polyvinylchloride appliqué manufactured by Key Automotive in St. Paul, Minnesota, and shipped on thousand-pound pallets to the plant in Brampton, Ontario, Canada, where all Dodge Chargers are made.

    If you want to read about the rest of the 2007 Dodge Charger SRT-8 Super Bee, read our review of the Dodge Charger SRT-8. You see, aside from the tape stripes on its hood, flanks and deck lid, plus the contrasting yellow stitching on the seat, steering wheel and shift knob, the Dodge Charger Super Bee is identical to the Charger SRT-8 we tested last year.

    Which means it's one hot car. You want a modern incarnation of a traditional big, rear-drive American muscle car? Here it is, 1968 all over again.
    At least that's what the Dodge marketing people are hoping for anyway.

    Cars on Illegal, Controlled Substances

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    Some things never go out of style.

    The 2007 Dodge Charger SRT-8 Super Bee is the first special edition of what they call the "Charger on steroids" series from Chrysler Group's Street and Racing Technology (SRT).

    "The Dodge Charger embodies modern American muscle, and at the same time, carries on a great performance heritage," says George Murphy, senior vice president of global brand marketing, Chrysler Group. "It was only natural to give a nod to that heritage with the reintroduction of a famous Dodge performance nameplate and a high-impact heritage paint name."

    Well, yes and no.

    We never really understood why anyone would want the Super Bee option. In 1968 Dodge had a perfectly good pair of muscle cars in the Coronet R/T and, at a higher price point, the Dodge Charger. The only reason the Super Bee option was introduced was to counterpoint the Plymouth Road Runner, which was a low-cost, low-content street machine that delivered a good bang-for-the-buck ratio. At an as-tested price of $47,000, our yellow Bee doesn't exactly continue that tradition.

    Later, in 1971, a Super Bee tape package was made available on the Charger itself in an attempt to pump up sagging sales. Meanwhile, sitting right over there was the perfectly fine Dodge Coronet R/T muscle machine with a nicer interior.

    So, we ask again. Why? Why a Super Bee when, sitting right over there, is a perfectly fine Dodge Charger SRT-8 muscle machine?

    The answer is simple. Dodge brand marketers know there will always be drivers who want to be in the face of other drivers.

    And the Detonator Yellow '07 Super Bee is, indeed, in your face.


    Under the Hood

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    This 6.1-liter version of the Hemi V8 packs 425 hp, some 85 hp more than that offered by the 5.7-liter Hemi V8.

    At least the Super Bee has the bones to back it up. Powering the Bee is the SRT-engineered 6.1-liter version of the Hemi V8 producing 425 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. That's 85 additional hp — 25 percent more — than the 5.7-liter Hemi. But again, this upgraded powertrain is available in any Charger SRT-8.

    Our testing at California Speedway netted a best 0-to-60-mph run of 5.3 seconds with the quarter-mile clicked off in 13.6 seconds at 105.8 mph. Numbers, by the way, which would allow the '07 Charger SRT-8 Super Bee to literally run rings around a '68 version. Hemi-powered '68s could run 13s only after hours of tuning and primping by engine preparation experts.

    And how about burnouts? After all, who wants a rear-drive muscle car if you're not going to do burnouts? Happy to report the Super Bee excels in the burnout department. Just brake rev it, dump the brake pedal and floor it and you're bouncing the tach needle off the rev limiter and frying the huge 255/45R20 rear tires at will (the fronts are 245/45R20).

    One strange quirk is, even when you manually shift the five-speed automatic's selector lever to 1st gear (in normal driving, the transmission starts in 2nd to save gas), you still can't hold there while you accelerate. If you start to approach the rev limit, the computer will override your manual AutoStick selection and shift the trans to 2nd. This is very embarrassing in the middle of a burnout, which quickly turns into a bog once the trans shifts on you.

    Hey, SRT engineers! We thought this is the SRT-8 version — the high-performance driver's version of the Charger. If we want to manually hold 1st gear, we should be able to manually hold 1st gear. Don't program the car's computer to override our selection if you've already programmed the rev limiter to save the engine.

    Handling and Braking

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    When you've put 425 hp to good use, you'll sleep better at night.

    With an electronic stability program, antilock braking system, plus specially calibrated springs, shocks and stabilizer bars, you'd expect this car's handling to be predictable and stable. And it is. The Bee's 66-mph run through the slalom is faster than the BMW 535i can manage. It also pulls a respectable 0.84g on the skid pad.

    Unfortunately, the price you pay for the handling is ride comfort. This car is stiff and jiggly. Of course, the SRT engineers will tell you that an American muscle car is supposed to ride stiff and jiggly — and they all did.
    But this isn't 1968 and there's a point where this heritage crap goes too far. It's just not necessary, and much of the blame has to go to the Bee's low-profile 20-inch tires.

    Despite its gigantic Brembo brakes, the Detonator Yellow Charger stopped from 60 mph in a rather long 135 feet, against Dodge's claim of "approximately 110 feet." We attribute the pedestrian braking performance to this car's rather porky 4,262-pound curb weight with more than 54 percent of those pounds over the front wheels.

    Out on the Street

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    It's grudge night at Irwindale Speedway's eighth-mile track, and the Dodge Charger SRT-8 Super Bee turns back the clock to 1968.

    And so it performs, but when you drive this car, you have to be ready to accept compliments — or indignities, depending on your perspective. Some examples garnered from our four days with the car in the Los Angeles area:

    • In El Segundo, a homeless guy with a five-day growth of beard and wearing filthy, torn pants went to the trouble of putting down his sign (which read "Will do anything for money"), and walked over to our test car at a traffic light: "Nice car, mister. Can you spare some change?"
    • In Manhattan Beach, several busboys poured out of the China Grill restaurant howling their approval as we pulled up to get our takeout order.
    • On Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, an older silver-haired woman in a Lexus RX 400h looked over at us at a light with a sneer demeaning enough to curl her lip up to her eyebrows.
    • In South Central, a carload of gangbangers pulled up next to us at a light in a customed-out Honda Civic sporting a 10-foot-high spoiler on the back and scissor doors. How do we know they were scissor doors? They were open. "Hey dawg, nice car, mon! Yeah, bitchin' wheels, bra! You got it goin', dawg!" they shouted until the light turned green.
    • But the greatest compliment (or indignity depending on your perspective) occurred as we cut through Los Angeles International Airport in an attempt to avoid some construction traffic on Sepulveda. Twice, guys on curbs with luggage tried to hail us down, mistaking us for a taxi cab as we went by — and the second one gave us the finger when we failed to stop for the fare.
    • Like we said, in your face.

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    MSRP of Test Vehicle: $46,960

    What Works:
    Big power, big burnouts, tight handling, room for five.

    What Needs Work:
    People mistake it for a taxi, jiggly ride, so-so brakes.

    Bottom Line:
    You want a modern incarnation of a traditional big, rear-drive American muscle car? Here it is, 1968 all over again.


    Performance

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    0 - 30 (sec): 2.2
    0 - 45 (sec): 3.5
    0 - 60 (sec): 5.3
    0 - 75 (sec): 7.2
    1/4 Mile (sec @ mph): 13.6 @ 105.8
    30 - 0 (ft): 33
    60 - 0 (ft): 135
    Braking Rating (Excellent, Good, Average, Poor or Very Poor): Good
    Slalom (mph): 66
    Skid Pad (g-force): 0.84
    Handling Rating (Excellent, Good, Average, Poor or Very Poor): Good

    Db @ Idle: 50.8
    Db @ Full Throttle: 81.3
    Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 65

    Acceleration: With ESP off, it's fairly easy to get a little initial scratch from the tires, then they hook up. Upshifts are amazingly quick and even a little harsh, but the tranny starts in 2nd gear when the shifter is left in Drive. What an 8-cylinder orchestra coming from the rear. It sounds like a stock car.

    Braking: Very little initial resistance, which just gets even springier as ABS kicks in. Lots of hunting for traction as the car slows and quite a lot of vibration and noise, too.

    Handling: Remarkably neutral and delicate on the skid pad. Steering doesn't load up much and eventually the fronts give up first. You can coax oversteer with the throttle though

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  2. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Fully Charged

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    That revised front fascia on the SRT-8 does more than look good. It increases downforce at high speeds while directing cool air to the front brakes.

    By Karl Brauer
    Date posted: 09-26-2005

    425 horsepower - 4,200 pounds - 0-60 in 5.4 seconds - 60-0 in 120 feet

    Driving the new 2006 Dodge Charger SRT-8 you find yourself thinking, "Sure it's fast, remarkably nimble and capable of stopping from 60 mph in 120 feet, but the average wife will never go for it. She'll only harp about the harsh ride and cringe as the exhaust system makes its Hemi-powered belch every time the tach swings past 4,000 rpm."

    Most automotive enthusiasts would like to see this new Charger earn the sort of widespread appeal that the 1968-1969 models did. Those cars were good enough for Frank Bullitt, Dirty Mary and Crazy Larry, plus a couple of good ol' boys from Hazzard County sporting a rebel flag and the words "General Lee" painted on the roof. But what sort of self-respecting better half is going to sign off on this 425-horsepower beast?

    Today's Muscle Car

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    A 180-mph speedometer, heavily bolstered front seats with suede inserts, and contrasting red stitching are some of the more obvious upgrades to the SRT-8's interior.

    That's an important question, because the new Dodge Charger now sports four doors, a roomy backseat and a large trunk (16.2 cubic feet), so it's obviously meant to appeal to more than just the testosterone-charged youth Dodge was targeting back in the late 1960s. Those guys are all grown up now, and many of them have to answer to that aforementioned wife. To our eyes, injecting this vehicle with a louder, more powerful 6.1-liter Hemi V8, not to mention a stiffer suspension, aggressively bolstered front seats and large "SRT" emblems on the grille, trunk lid and head restraints seems a bit contradictory.

    But after spending a week with the Charger SRT-8 we can assure you it has mastered the art of the 21st-century muscle car. It's got a fully independent four-wheel suspension, and Chrysler's Street and Racing Technology (SRT) team has upgraded items like the front and rear sway bars, as well as the bushings and the spring rates, to better deliver on the car's promise of high-performance handling.

    Dodge claims to have tweaked the settings of the Electronic Stability Program (ESP) as well, but we found it to be overly intrusive in "on" mode, and still bothersome in "off" mode. This was particularly annoying because the big car often wanted to go faster around corners than the system would let it, but it didn't stop us from ripping through the slalom at 64.5 mph (faster than the new Mazda MX-5 Miata and Pontiac Solstice).

    Parts That Equal a Whole Shot

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    Those chrome 3.5-inch exhaust tips produce quite a howl when the tachometer swings past 4,000 rpm.

    SRT also added a variety of exterior upgrades that, according to the group's director, Dan Knott, "…don't just look great, they're also functional." The most obvious exterior changes are a set of five-spoke, 20-inch aluminum wheels wearing Goodyear Supercar F1 tires (245/45s in front, 255/45s in back).

    Peer through those five spokes and you can't miss the massive 14.1-inch front rotors (13.7 inches in back) grabbed by red four-piston Brembo calipers. These hauled the 4,200-pound Charger SRT-8 down from 60 mph in a confident 120 feet while displaying no fade after three repeated panic stops. With a front fascia directing air to those brakes it would appear Mr. Knott's "functional" comment rings true. There's also a functional hood scoop that brings cold air into the engine compartment — plus it looks cool.

    But the most important upgrade remains the Hemi engine under that scoop. Bumping the standard Hemi V8's horsepower from 340 to 425 meant bumping displacement from 5.7 to 6.1 liters through a bore increase of 3.5 millimeters. The SRT boys also upped the compression ratio from 9.6-to-1 to 10.3-to-1 while adding high-flow cylinder heads and a more aggressive camshaft. Exhaust pipe diameter also increased from 2.5 inches to 2.8 inches.

    The 425-hp V8 hooks to a five-speed automatic transmission with a manual-shift mode. It also uses a sturdier prop shaft, beefier rear differential and stronger axles, making it identical to the drivetrain used in the Chrysler 300C SRT-8 we tested last year. That car pulled a 5.7-second 0-to-60 time and ran through the quarter-mile in 14.1 seconds at 105 mph. Putting the Charger through similar testing netted a 5.4 0-to-60 time while taking 13.5 seconds to clear the quarter-mile at 105 mph. With curb weight, tire size and gearing the same in both models we can only conclude that the Charger's cold-air induction is really working. Well, that and the usual variances between test vehicles and testing conditions.

    Not Just for Boys

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    Classic Hemi engine trademarks, including the black valve covers and orange block, pay homage to perhaps to the most successful race engine in Chrysler's history.

    What hasn't wavered is our enthusiasm for SRT products that live up to the division's goal of being top-performance offerings in their segment. With a mid-5-second 0-to-60 time, not to mention braking and handling characteristics that would embarrass many European performance sedans that cost thousands more, the 2006 Dodge Charger SRT-8 is a modern muscle car marvel.

    And despite its somewhat choppy ride quality and baritone exhaust warble, it still passed the most important test: the wife liked it
    . Actually, she really liked it. "It's the first modern car to remind me of your 1970 Plymouth GTX," she beamed enthusiastically. "And while it's more refined than that car it still has plenty of attitude — and it's really fast. Can we get one?"

    Looks like Dodge has figured out the secret formula.

    [​IMG]

    MSRP of Test Vehicle: $43,805

    What Works:
    Excellent steering and brakes, successfully captures the spirit of a classic American muscle car, the wife wants one.

    What Needs Work:
    Stability control intrudes even when it's "off," ride quality suffers as a result of suspension tuning, lower front fascia scrapes easily.

    Bottom Line:
    A muscle car you — and your family — can love.


    Performance

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    0 - 30 (sec): 2.3
    0 - 45 (sec): 3.5
    0 - 60 (sec): 5.4
    0 - 75 (sec): 7.3
    1/4 Mile (sec @ mph): [email protected]
    30 - 0 (ft): 29.44
    60 - 0 (ft): 120.35
    Braking Rating (Excellent, Good, Average, Poor or Very Poor): Excellent
    Slalom (mph): 64.5
    Skid Pad (g-force): 38.9
    Handling Rating (Excellent, Good, Average, Poor or Very Poor): Excellent

    Db @ Idle: 51.8
    Db @ Full Throttle: 82.6
    Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 72.7

    Acceleration: Launching the Charger SRT-8 is extremely tricky. We got our best time by power braking the car to 1,500 rpm in automatic mode with the traction control turned off. Trying to launch without a power brake and/or in manual shift mode results in short shifts and more aggressive traction control (even though it's "off." The trans shifts at 6,000 rpm, and redline is set at 6,250. In manual mode, there is a delay in upshifts where the car actually hesitates between gears unless you intiate the shifts very early. We think its cool that the SRT-8 model allows you to control shifts and hold gears, but the ultra-intrusive ESP program is NOT so cool in a 425-horse performance car.

    Braking: The SRT's brakes are progressive, offering solid feedback, subtle but detectable ABS noise and vibration, and a bit more nose dive than we expected. However, this is a large and heavy vehicle, so overall performance was very confident.

    Handling: For a heavy sedan, the Charger SRT-8's handling is very impressive. A quick steering ratio, stiff suspension, minimal body roll and sticky tires make the 4,200 pound car very easy to drive fast. We had to turn off the ESP program to get the best times, but with it off the system will allow for sufficient rotation and oversteer. The 6.1 liter Hemi has a massive torque curve, which allows for easy acceleration out of the final cones.

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  3. bokhan

    bokhan i love you

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    frumunda cheese~!
  4. Dodge guy

    Dodge guy OT Supporter

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  5. ChosenGSR

    ChosenGSR Mama always said you'd be the chosen one

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    all that shit.jpg

    mullet racing ftw.
     
  6. Werdness to the Turdness

    Werdness to the Turdness RIP Penguins OT Supporter

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    lots of money, not much performance
     
  7. TigreTek

    TigreTek omega member OT Supporter

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    difference is in the tires, i'm sure.

    how can the non-super bee accelerate faster and brake in a shorter distance when they're identical?
     
  8. Irvin Washington

    Irvin Washington New Member

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    I want it in plum crazy purple, dammit. :hs:
     
  9. spyder007

    spyder007 Bаnned bу Ѕuреr Μоdеrаtоrs

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    It's making for the best police car in decades. DECADES!
     
  10. Y2kAccord

    Y2kAccord Everything happens for reasons I just dont know

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    Those arent GM
     
  11. GucciGucci

    GucciGucci Active Member

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    For $47K you could probably buy a real cool muscle car from Hemmings.


    :hsugh:


    1967 Chevrolet Camaro

    $23,850

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    1967 Chevrolet Camaro: Returned to street use after 19 years on the track with exact driveline that ran 10.57 at Norwalk Bracket Finals. All steel, no rust. 355/power glide/5:57 12 bolt spool with Moroso axles. Balanced and clearanced, dyno at 468hp, 13:1 Manley pistons, Dart II heads, Lunati cam, Crane rollers and stud girdle, Victor Jr intake with 850 Holley, 5300 TCI converter and trans. Never on nitrous. Narrowed rear frame with leaf springs, new tubs and trunk floor, 10 point cage. Restoration completed 12/05/05 including paint, bumpers and stainless trim, W/S, wiring, lamps, custom dash and interior. Body has 88K miles, very straight. Call for additional information or come see it at our Detroit location! ClassicAuto Showplace, LTD. 2222 Stephenson Hwy. Troy, MI, 48083. Phone: (248) 689-1968, Toll-Free: (866) 534-3357. See additional photos of this car and many others at www.classicautoshowplace.com. $23,850

    http://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/carsforsale/chevrolet/camaro/466748.html
     
  12. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    i love it, I want it
     
  13. KGB ate my bread

    KGB ate my bread Made you look. OT Supporter

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    sucks it has 2 doors too many
     
  14. Bona Fide

    Bona Fide Guest

    Mistaken for a taxi? :rofl:
     
  15. Bona Fide

    Bona Fide Guest

    Wait, is a 13s 1/4 mile considered fast nowadays? Yeesh, where have I been?
     
  16. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    [​IMG]

    The V vs SRT battle is a draw right now. But GM has a new weapon on the horizon to put Mopar back in their place. :noes:
     
  17. victimizati0n

    victimizati0n New Member

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  18. D Hurr is like

    D Hurr is like He's got two left feet and he bites my moves.

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    I'm not impressed :hs:
     
  19. MrBonus

    MrBonus Et Tu, Brute?

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    As much as I like the way it and the upcoming Challenger look, other than the torque, I'd imagine I wouldn't enjoy driving such a car in the least.
     
  20. D Hurr is like

    D Hurr is like He's got two left feet and he bites my moves.

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    Dawt.

    I really want to pull the trigger on a new Camaro when it comes out - however if they put Active Fuel Management on that car I will never own another GM as long as I live.
     
  21. MrBonus

    MrBonus Et Tu, Brute?

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    I'm really hoping the shorter wheelbase and lower weight of the Challenger makes it a more entertaining car. I so want to fall in love with it.
     
  22. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    The Camaro will be the driver's car of the two, but I still have nothing but love for the Challenger (which is one of these with a different body, less wheelbase and less weight).
     
  23. MrBonus

    MrBonus Et Tu, Brute?

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    My LT1 4th Gen still ranks up there with one of my favorite cars of all-time. I am however bothered by the lack of t-tops on the new car.
     
  24. MrBonus

    MrBonus Et Tu, Brute?

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    I feel like GM has a habit of trying to appeal to everyone at all times by tacking on technology or gimmicks/features. Their attempt to appease a certain element that isn't even looking to buy a Camaro anyway undermines the people who will be in Chevy dealerships throwing down their hard earned cash.
     
  25. D Hurr is like

    D Hurr is like He's got two left feet and he bites my moves.

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    You mean you don't want your strictly straight-line power car shutting off cylinders? No wai!
     

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