After years of thinking modern muscle cars were for old men trying to live out their glory days, I finally put my bias aside to drive what turned out to be my new favorite all-around car – the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A! Here's our overview of the time spent with one of the most impressive cars I've ever driven.
Dodge Challenger T/A Overview
Let's start off with one of my favorite parts of the Dodge Challenger T/A – the exterior. While I've never been a huge fan of the standard Dodge Challenger looks, it's still always been my favorite of the three big muscle car competitors, being the Mustang, Camaro, and Challenger. I've always had a huge amount of respect for Dodge for keeping the Challenger looking retro and modern without making it look like a squished sports car (I'm looking at you, Mustang).
While the exterior is pretty basic, it has so many little details that make the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A stand out. For starters, there's the hood pins. Oh boy! Such a little detail about the car makes it so much better than any other muscle car out there for sale today. Hood pins on a car in 2018! What an amazing change from electronic hood releases and buttons for everything. Sure, the Dodge Challenger T/A has a hood release in the interior to release the latch, but being required to use the functional hood pins to show off the massive engine makes a world of difference.
I'm in love with the way the Dodge Challenger T/A sticks to it's muscle car heritage, and I think it's the best looking muscle car for sale today. I'd even be as bold to say it's at the top of my list for one of the best looking cars for sale with the satin paint and hood pins. I've obsessed with the way the Dodge Challenger T/A looks for days now, and I can't get it out of my head. The 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A is perfect.
While the exterior absolutely blew me away when I first saw it, the interior was a bit disappointing. Not that it matters behind the wheel of a near 500 HP muscle car, but you may also be disappointed with the lack of quality finishes in the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A. Don't get me wrong; the interior looks fantastic. Once you start feeling around, though, you start to realize why the Dodge Challenger T/A is a near 500 HP V8 muscle car for less than $60k after options. The lack of quality touches inside remind you that it's meant for one thing – straight line speed.
Overall, though, the interior was perfectly fine. There was nothing that stood out about the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A in a negative way, but the blind spots were absolutely stupid. I can't believe how hard the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A was to see out of, and what made it worse is that the rear view camera on the model we tested failed to work. To be fair, though, that was due to the battery going flat after running out of fuel. We'll get to that later.
The infotainment system works well for what it is. In fact, it's not a bad system whatsoever. Unfortunately, with our test model not working, I wasn't able to go too in-depth with the Uconnect system in the Dodge Challenger T/A, but from what I saw, it was fairly decent.
My favorite buttons on the interior, however, were labeled “Sport” and “Launch Control,” which completely change the way the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A interacts with the driver and road. The Dodge Challenger T/A is so quick that you forget your driving. You start to feel like you're playing a video game with crazy graphics and stellar immersive experience, which was terrifying to realize you weren't at high speeds.
As far as the interior goes, though, I was obsessed with the gauge cluster. The classic and retro styling of the gauge cluster made me feel like I was in a different time – a time in which I actually wasn't even alive… but still. Overall, I loved the interior of the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A, even if it had some quirks and was IMPOSSIBLE to see out of any side.
Performance & Sound
While it's no Hellcat or Demon, the Dodge Challenger T/A is a beast of it's own, and it can hang with some of the faster production cars on the market today. I was blown away with the way the car handled the horsepower, and the 8 speed automatic gearbox in the Dodge Challenger is proof that even if the manual is dying, it's being replaced with something so good that you forget you're not shifting. Personally, I enjoyed the Dodge Challenger T/A more with the automatic transmission, as it was just THAT good at handing the power.
As far as sound goes for the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A, nothing I've driven compares. It's no 5.2L Lamborghini V10 scream, which I love. It's a retro V8 rumble that shakes the entire car and all the buildings around it. I wouldn't have it any other way. I've never heard a stock car for under $60k sound so perfect, and I'm still dreaming of daily driving a Challenger T/A with that sound.
All in all, if I had the funds to buy another V8 car, I'd head right down to Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram of Greeneville, TN and meet with my salesman Javian Harris, who was nice enough to let us review the 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A. I'd buy the car instantly. Ever since sitting behind the wheel for the first second, I have been obsessed with the Challenger. I can't get the thing out of my head, and it's been two years since a vehicle did that to me. I've driven Porsches, Audis, BMWs, Mercedes, Rovers, Jags, and just about everything else, but the Dodge Challenger has won me over. It's the first car I've driven in a long time that wants you to treat it like the beast it is and tame it.
The 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A is a pure adrenaline rush with daily driver convinces. Just don't run the 2017 Challenger T/A out of gas, because pushing a 4,500 lbs muscle car up a hill is not too pleasant, and dealing with a flat battery isn't too fun either.