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Dodge’s 765kW Demon cops US drag strip ban

National Hot Rod Association says swansong V8-powered muscle car is ‘too quick’

23 Mar 2023

POPPING a wheelie in a standard production car just became a reality, with the arrival in the US of Dodge’s Challenger SRT Demon 170.


The swansong V8-powered model – which produces over 1000hp out of the box – copped a violation notice from the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) for running a sub-nine-second quarter-mile pass without a safety cage or parachute, continuing a tradition set by the original SRT Demon back in 2018.



Sadly, the high-performance coupe is highly unlikely to show up Down Under due to unprecedented US demand. Limited production of the special edition model means queues are already filling Stateside, offering Aussie buyers little chance of jumping in the hot seat.


Dodge says its Challenger SRT Demon 170 is the “quickest, fastest and most powerful (production) muscle car in the world”, a claim difficult to dispute given its supercharged 6.2-litre petrol V8 engine belts out a whopping 1025 horsepower (765kW).


The limited edition model is one of Dodge’s Last Call range of models built to celebrate the end of the ICE-powered muscle car era. Dodge is in the process of electrifying its line-up creating something of a speculator market for its final V8 models – which has occurred despite efforts from head office aimed at countering price gouging, gazumping or profiteering.


For the Challenger SRT Demon 170 – the final Last Call model – the specs alone are likely to see many models end up tucked away as a nest egg.


According to Dodge, the HEMI-powered Challenger SRT Demon 170 makes 1025hp (765kW) at 6500rpm and a tyre-shredding 945lb.ft (1281Nm) at 4200rpm. The figures are said to rocket the two-door coupe to 100km/h in 1.6 seconds, exceeding a substantial 2Gs of force in the process.


The Challenger SRT Demon 170 is the first factory production car to run the 0-400m dash in under nine seconds with a NHRA certifying an 8.91-second pass at 151.17mph (244km/h)… before it slapped the car with a violation letter for running the time without a safety cage or parachute.


Dodge run the record-setting pass on E85 fuel, but says the engine’s computer can adapt parameters to operate on a range of fuels, with E10 reducing output to a ‘mere’ 900hp (671kW) and 810lb.ft (1098Nm).


The Challenger SRT Demon 170 is officially the quickest production vehicle to be produced in the brand’s 100-year-plus history and features a nearly all new engine components (including forged pistons and rods, tougher bearings, billet main caps and a new camshaft, larger intake, and epic 105mm throttle body.


A massive 3.0-litre supercharger and smaller pulley increase boost pressure by over 40 per cent when compared with the previous top-Dodge, the Challenger Hellcat Redeye Widebody.


The significant increase in output is handled by an upgraded driveline with 240mm ring gear, a 53 per cent stronger differential housing (manufactured using aerospace-grade metals), a 30 per cent stronger rear prop shaft and stronger half shafts.


Keeping rubber on the road is a set of Mickey Thompson ET Street drag radials in 315/50R17 profile at the rear and 245/55R18 profile up front.


The car is suspended by “unique drag mode” coilover suspension with tuned valves in adaptive-damping shocks to provide what Dodge says is maximum weight transfer and custom race settings for drag calibrations.


Production of the 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 will begin soon and will most likely be limited to 3300 units. Dodge says this number will be based upon production capacity, and that almost all examples will be sold in the United States (3000) with the remainder earmarked for Canada (300).


“To celebrate the end of the HEMI muscle-car era, we pulled off all the governors to reach a new level, a new benchmark of ‘factory-crazy’ production car performance,” said Dodge brand chief executive officer Tim Kuniskis.


“In 2015, Dodge shocked the world with the 707-horsepower Hellcat. Then, in 2018, we did it with the 840-horsepower Demon, and now we are doing it again with the 1025-horsepower Demon 170 – the world’s first sustainable-energy (ethanol), eight-second, factory-production, street-legal muscle car.”


The left-hand drive-only muscle car will be priced from $US96,666 ($A144,000) plus on-road costs.

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