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HCOTY Nominee: Dodge Charger Hellcat

Jeff Glucker December 12, 2014 Hooniversal Car of the Year 11 Comments

Dodge-Charger-Hellcat-HCOTY

This the season in which a red sleigh delivers tremendous joy. In this version of the story, I’m the fat man at the helm and my reindeer have been replaced by a 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine. Dodge Charger Hellcat with your paint so bright, won’t you ruin some tires tonight.

Yes… yes it will, and I think it deserves a nomination for Hooniverse Car of the Year. Read on to hear why I don’t think it will actually win though… and that’s okay.

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I love everything about the Dodge Charger Hellcat. Take a quick look at a global view of the car: it’s an American sedan that seats five passengers, has a 707-horsepower supercharged motor that would see Mad Max himself shy down from a drag race, and it has a top speed of 204 miles per hour. It can be in your garage for around $64,000. We’re talking about a sub-$70,000 car here, and one that’s wearing DODGE badges to boot.

This is amazing.

On top of all of the above, it happens to drive rather wonderfully. Yes it’s a bit of a porker, but the suspension, tire and wheel setup, and brakes are all working together to make sure you don’t notice that when you’re whipping this cars ass back and forth on a race track. You can then leave the track, put all the modes back into NORMAL, and drive comfortably home. Hell, pick up your kids from school, get groceries, and do your day-to-day tasks while you’re at it. If you happen to run into almost any other car on your way back to your garage, push the button to make the car mental again, and let the other drivers see your lovely tail lamp design.

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Dodge has pulled off one hell of a homerun here. It’s a totally manageable sedan that has over seven hundred horsepower. That sentence makes little to no sense, yet it’s true. I could’ve nominated the Challenger here as well, because Dodge didn’t just do this to one car but to two members of its lineup. I’m going with the Charger though, because the ability to do all of this in a sedan is car cooler than in the coupe… plus I like the styling upgrades the Charger has undergone. What was once a car that marketing poorly assigned a name to, has grown into the car it would’ve been had they clued in the design team.

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And here’s why it’s not going to win (though I think it will still do well in the polls). It’s hard to nominate a brand-new car for our illustrious award. We love old cars here, but we certainly admire and appreciate a handful of the new ones as well. If anyone should be tasked with bringing this car into the HCOTY spotlight, it’s yours truly. I’m probably the most connected with the new stuff here in the Hooniverse (with Greg and Kamil right behind) because I drive the new stuff on a near daily basis*. I’d be happy to see the Charger Hellcat win it all this year… but I know in my heart that the Targa Truck is what I would’ve written about if Brendan hadn’t already done so. Still, I will say that the Dodge Charger Hellcat is one of the greatest cars I’ve ever driven, even if just for the sheer insanity that it exists.

America… fuck yeah.

Images copyright 2014 Hooniverse/Jeff Glucker

*until the wagon is finished, that is.

  • Joe Btfsplk

    Dodge Charger Hellcat…. The official car of the Power-Ball Lottery !

    • Joe Btfsplk

      If I win, I'm gonna get me one…

      • JayP2112

        Get me one too. Dibs.

        • Vairship

          Get me the station wagon version please! 😉

  • Number_Six

    I…uh…thought we said no new cars…

    /ellipses…ἔλλειψις…

  • JayP2112

    The team working the Hellcat deserves "Immortal Hoon" status.
    In the face of bankruptcy, FIAT and CAFE, they came up with what may be the perfect F-You of the automotive world.

    If Ford or GM had dreamed this thing up, it would have been a head nod of "cool." But this is Dodge. DODGE! Then it wouldn't fit in their halo car, Viper. F- it. Put it in the Charger and Challenger. Team Viper had to have pissed a little.

    Announce 707HP three days before the 4th of July. Hell Yea!
    <img src="http://image.motortrend.com/f/wot/thread-of-the-day-to-buy-american-or-not-buy-american-that-is-the-question-113187/60522504+w670+h419+cr1+ar0/2012-dodge-challenger-george-washington.jpg&quot; width="600">

  • ptschett

    The Hellcats ought to be the car of the year somewhere, just for how insane they are. The engineers had to be snickering to themselves every time they saw the usual "over 600 HP" projections in the press before the final HP number was announced.

  • Elliott

    Familial resemblance be damned! IMO That new front end is positively FUGLY!!

    • smalleyxb122

      I hear a lot of dissenting opinions on the latest styling of the Charger, but I think it looks waaaay better than its predecessor. Now, they just have to get rid of that horrible scallop in the side.