Inside the Demon with the Dodge Brand’s Jim Wilder
In this first Demon Blog series, let’s make sure everyone understands that the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is a fully street-legal, ready-to-drive street car. Don’t make the rookie mistake of confusing Demon with the 2009 and up Dodge Challenger LC22R Drag Pak.
The Challenger Drag Pak is offered strictly through Mopar Performance outlets and is intended for sanctioned drag racing on a closed racetrack. In fact, some elements of the Challenger LC22R Drag Pak’s construction have to be completed by the retail buyer (the debut models in 2009 didn’t have exhaust or rear suspension systems).
And to make sure the LC22R Drag Pak stays on the drag strip, Mopar sells them without a federally mandated Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) tag. Take one to your local registry of motor vehicles in search of license plates and the clerk’s computer will melt down from confusion. The Drag Pak is not a street car and was never meant to be. Its mission is to compete in NHRA Stock and Super Stock quarter-mile drag racing.
In stark contrast, the Challenger SRT Demon is a street machine … that happens to be very, very good on the drag strip. The right way to see the Demon is to think of it as a Challenger SRT Hellcat that’s been significantly modified for drag racing, but hasn’t lost the Hellcat’s unique ability to purr quietly in dense rush hour traffic, zip through a slalom course with the best of them or make a cross-country Boston to Los Angeles run without thinking twice.
And unlike the Dodge brand’s legendary ’65 and ’68 426 Race HEMI® Coronets and Darts, you won’t need to show your Dodge dealer an NHRA competition license to be considered for ownership. Although, after experiencing what the Dodge Demon has to offer, you may want to get a license. All Dodge seeks is 3,300 buyers (U.S. and Canada) with a desire to own the quickest, meanest, baddest muscle car in history.
So with the fact established that the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is ready for a place in your driveway – or dreams, as the case may be – watch for more of these Demon blogs wherein we’ll explore the Demon’s many innovative drag racing features and functions with exclusive insight from Dodge factory insider Jim Wilder.
Wilder is one of the select group of engineers who helped bring modern legends like the Viper, Challenger Scat Pack, Challenger T/A and yes, the Hellcat, to life. He’s a hard-core horsepower junkie and has many great insider stories to share right here. Stay tuned as we explore the Demon!