If “Speed Demon” is your middle name, keep reading.
No, we didn’t just swear. The car’s name really is Challenger Hellcat. And boy does it live up to its name. You might remember Hellcat as the female Marvel superhero, an evil, devilish creature in Dungeons and Dragons or a World War II fighter plane. Lately, though, it’s taken on a new persona: one of the most powerful street-legal cars on the market. With 797 horsepower screaming under the hood, we’re sure you’ll agree. But the Redeye isn’t just any Challenger Hellcat. The 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is the Challenger with the Hellcat appearance package and a modified Dodge Demon engine.
How Much Power Do You Really
The Challenger comes with a wide variety of engine options, starting with a 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine with 305 horsepower and 268 lb-ft of torque. But you can upgrade 4 times for a Supercharged 6.2L HEMI SRT V8 engine with 717horsepower and 656 lb-ft of torque. But Dodge didn’t stop there. The Hellcat has a cousin… the Demon, which boasts 840 horsepower thanks to extra air intakes and a modification which allows the engine to use rice fuel. The Redeye edition of the Hellcat uses this engine, without the modification. So, we call it the Demon’s cousin. It will grant you 797 raw, unbridled horsepower and 707 lb-ft of torque.
Honestly, unless you’re a drag racer, track rat or professional driver, we can’t see any reason why you’d need the Dodge SRT Hellcat Redeye, but you might want it. (Hint: You do. It’s fantastic.)
When asked what it feels like to drive my response was, “It’s like someone woke a hibernating bear and shoved him under the hood. He’s mad. And you like it.” Really, it’s a tank. It’s heavy and you can feel the weight in the steering. It crosses the border of thrill and excitement and goes straight for terrifying danger in one great big leap. On a track with a pristinely smooth surface, this car could be fantastically fun. On our country roads, it feels like raw power unhinged, but you can’t say no.
I talked to a racing instructor about the car and he said “That car’s backend is always wanting to trade places with its front end!” and he’s right. (We won’t talk about how I know this.)
If this kind of ride sounds exciting to you, buckle up, cause we’re about to go for a ride that will take your breath away.
WHO THIS CAR IS FOR
- Drivers with a need for speed.
- People who love loud, powerful, heavy cars
- Singles or couples without kids or pets
We feel the need to add a disclaimer to this section and tell you who this car is NOT for. If you are worried about fuel efficiency, safety, room for kids, or your budget, this car is not for you. Also, if you are a show off, we’d recommend you stay clear of this car because it’s way more than you can handle.
WHAT THIS CAR COSTS
Let’s start at the beginning, with the most basic Dodge Challenger price, and go up from there, shall we?
- The SXT starts at $27,295. Not bad for an absolute beast of a car with a V6 engine with 305 hp and an estimated 19/30 mpg fuel efficiency. This one is only offered with an automatic transmission.
- You can upgrade this car to the GT at $30,395 which adds a performance package with a cool air intake on the hood, better steering and suspension, nicer seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel with paddle shifters, larger wheels, and more.
- The next step up is the RT which starts at $34,295 for the 375-HP 5.7L HEMI® V8 Engine. This car (and all that come after it) is available as an automatic or manual.
- Then comes the RT / Scat Pack, which is a good middle-of-the-road option coming in at $39,995 and boasting a 392 HEMI® V8 Engine with 485 HP and 485 LB-FT of Torque, the 8.4″ Uconnect system, better brakes, heated seats, and launch control.
- The famous SRT Hellcat starts at $60,695 and gives you a Supercharged 6.2L HEMI® SRT V8 Engine with 717 HP and 656 LB-FT of Torque… plus mega brakes to bring all that weight and power to a stop after you’ve done your 1/4 mile in 11.2 seconds.
The model we drove was the SRT Hellcat Redeye which starts at $71,695. The standard performance package highlights for this car is as follows…
- Supercharged 6.2L HEMI high output SRT V8 engine with 797 horsepower and 707 lb-ft of torque
- Functional dual snorkel hood with cold air intake
- Eight-speed automatic transmission
- Runs a quarter mile in 10.9 seconds
- Widebody package is available
Ours came with all of that, plus Sirius XM, black brake calipers, an SRT performance spoiler and some other extras to bring the total MSRP to $88,900.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Besides for the take-your-breath-away power under the hood, this car was decked out with a page full of features, a few of which really stand out.
- Seats 5; seats 4 comfortably. Really.
- Heated steering wheel. Easily the best feature ever invented.
- Harman Kardon sound system with trunk-mounted subwoofer and surround sound
- Leather everything from seats to wrapped steering wheel, gear shifter, and door trim panels
- Keyless entry and push-button start
- Park assist, back-up camera, blind spot, and rear-crossing detection and alerts
- Adaptive cruise, automatic high beams, and rain-sensitive wipers
- 8.4″ touch screen navigation and infotainment system
- Eco, Sport, Track, and customizable drive modes
- And last, but not least, a Red Key
A Red Key… And a Black Key
If you’re not already an SRT geek, you should know that Dodge’s lineup of SRT vehicles come with two keys… the standard black key fob, and a red key fob. The black one is for sensible driving and limits the engine’s power to a more reasonable performance for everyday driving. The red key unleashes the beast under the hood, giving you full power to make unwise decisions and wake the neighbors.
What We Liked During our 2019 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Review
Is there anything we didn’t like? No. But we can think of a couple of highlights!
For one, this car, while only two door, actually seats five. The middle seat in the back may be a bit tight, but it has one. And, two of my 6′ tall brothers sat in the back seat while I drove and my husband sat in the front passenger seat, and the guys in the back weren’t complaining. This is a pretty big deal for a 2-door car, especially a sports car. (Really, it’s more of a muscle car, but you know what we mean.)
It’s comfortable! I’ve been in some performance cars that put all of their design efforts into looks and performance and forget that some of us like to drive to town and back without needing to see the chiropractor when we’re done. Even the back seats were thickly padded, covered in luxurious vented leather and molded to hug your passengers tight while you drift around the corners in shrieks of delight.
The trunk is HUGE. It’s one of the biggest, I’ve seen on a coupe or sedan. I bought a weeks worth of groceries and only used about 1/3 of the cargo space.
And last but not least, we loved the Uconnect system and how easy it was to connect to our Apple and Android devices so we could play our own music and use Google Maps, read and respond to text messages without taking our eyes off the road.
Would You Drive a Hellcat?
Tell us, does this sound like the car for you? Would you tame it with the black key, or let the beast out to run?
Dodge provided the Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye for my test drive; all opinions are 100% my own.