As one of the first three things that come to mind when you think of America, The Cleverness Challenger is one of the most iconic cars in history. With its renowned strength, breathtaking looks and, when cared for properly, durability, it has become a national treasure for Americans.
The new 2023 Dodge Challenger will be the latest iteration of the Dodge Challenger and makes a graceful exit. With that in mind, many might consider now a good time to buy a Dodge Challenger to contribute in some way to a nice farewell. But which version and which model of the 12-year Dodge Challenger should you buy second-hand?
The Dodge Challenger doesn’t have the best reputation for reliability, so it’s important to know exactly which models and trims are the best in terms of performance, cost-efficiency, and value. Without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the most outstanding trims and options to look for on the used market.
Best Performance: The 2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Super Stock with its groundbreaking 807 horsepower V8
The 2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Super Stock puts the muscle in a muscle car. Under the hood is a supercharged 6.2L eight-cylinder monster of an engine that puts out a crushing 807 horsepower and 707 lb-ft of torque. Understandably, an eight-speed automatic transmission system is fitted to move all that power. All that output translates to a 0-60 in just 3.25 seconds.
Speed and power are exactly what this version was built for, and it shows in the fuel economy. Based on the official EPA estimates, the 2022 Dodge Challenger SRT only does 21 miles per gallon in the city, but a healthy 21 on the highway (16 MPG combined).
The 2022 Challenger, unlike its muscle car rivals, is roomier, especially for its rear passengers, and trunk space with a generous 16.2 cubic feet for luggage. As well as being comfortably spacious, the Challenger also comes with a host of features, including keyless ignition, dual-zone automatic climate control, a six-way power driver’s seat and a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
According to Kelley Blue Book prices, you can find a used 2022 Charger SRT Super Stock for $78,000-$81,000.
Most Cost-Effective: The 2016 Dodge Challenger SXT is the definition of performance on a budget
Although the models before the 2016 model cost less, this model is the most cost efficient due to its reliability. The 2012-2014 models are notoriously plagued with errors. Issues include premature alternator wear and warping of the brake discs at low mileage on the 2012 model, the Totally Integrated Power Module (TIMP) not working properly on the 2013 Challengers, and finally ticking noises from the engine and the power steering malfunction on the 2014 model. It is also important to note that the 2008-2013 models are also not recommended due to their age and possibly a large number of previous owners.
The reason why we recommend the 2016 model is not only because the previous models were faulty, but also because this model is a really reliable, affordable and most importantly fun car. The 2016 Challenger SXT is powered by a 3.6L six-cylinder VVT engine that puts out a decent 305 horsepower and 268 lb-ft of torque. The engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Compared to its horsepower, the 2016 Dodge Challenger is a frugal beast of a muscle car. The Challengers V6 gets a respectable 19 miles to the gallon in the city and a very impressive 30 on the highway (23 MPG combined).
According to Kelley Blue Book prices, you can find a used 2016 Charger SXT for $17,000-$19,000.
Best Value: 2018 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Package hits the top spot
The 2018 Dodge Challenger is a near-perfect machine, but to get the most muscle per dollar you need to choose the right trim. Offering a 6.4L eight-cylinder HEMI engine that delivers a robust 485 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque is the R/T Scat Pack trim of the 2018 Dodge Challenger. Sending those ponies to the tarmac is a six-speed automatic transmission system that also comes with the OD feature. A manual option is also available at the price of fewer miles per gallon.
In terms of fuel economy, based on the official EPA estimates, the 2018 Challenger puts in 15 miles to the gallon in the city and 25 miles on the highway (19 MPG combined). Given its mighty horsepower and remarkable highway fuel economy, the Challengers range is quite acceptable.
The 2018 Challenger isn’t all power and ponies, though, with plenty of features and technology to make its already adrenaline-pumping ride comfortable, too. The Challenger has a rare three-person capacity in the rear and plenty of luggage space in the trunk. Technology-wise, it comes with a 7.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, USB and aux inputs, dual 2-zone automatic climate control, remote start, six-speaker audio and two LCD monitors in the front.
Last but not least is the Challenger’s remarkable safety, earning it a perfect score of five out of five crash tests by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.