January 7, 2007
An all-new model in 2006, the Dodge Charger undergoes a few changes in 2007. Most notable is the addition of all-wheel drive, which can be added to SE, SXT and R/T models.
New available options on the SE include 17-inch aluminum wheels, and a Popular Equipment Group package of power driver’s seat and split rear seat with armrest. The SXT can now be optioned with a rear spoiler, and a Convenience Package of dual-zone temperature control, one-touch power windows and automatic headlamps. New exterior colours are Marine Blue, TorRed and Steel Blue.
The Charger comes with a choice of four engines: a 2.7-litre V6, 3.5-litre V6, 5.7-litre Hemi V8, and 6.1-litre Hemi V8. Trim lines are the SE, SXT, R/T, Daytona R/T and SRT8.
The SE uses the 2.7-litre V6 with four-speed automatic transmission, but it can be optioned up to the 3.5-litre V6. Features include air conditioning, floor console with storage bin and 12-volt power outlet, tilt and telescopic wheel, overhead console, cloth seats, outside temperature display, 17-inch steel wheels, electronic stability control, four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and all-speed traction control, cruise control, CD player with four speakers and auxiliary audio input jacks, power windows, power locks with keyless entry, and engine immobilizer. All-wheel drive models receive 18-inch aluminum wheels.
The SXT uses the 3.5-litre V6 with five-speed automatic transmission, and adds a chrome grille surround, heated mirrors, fog lamps, 60/40 split folding rear seat, cargo net, eight-way power driver’s seat, illuminated vanity mirrors, leather-wrapped wheel, satin silver interior accents, 17-inch aluminum wheels and Boston Acoustics six-speaker audio system. All-wheel drive models receive 18-inch aluminum wheels.
The R/T uses the 5.7-litre V8 and five-speed automatic transmission, and adds leather seats, 18-inch aluminum wheels, dual bright exhaust tips and performance brake system. The R/T can also be optioned with the R/T Road/Track Package, which increases the 5.7-litre by 10 hp and adds performance steering and suspension, heavy-duty brakes, 20-inch wheels, low-back performance bucket seats, and rear spoiler.
The Daytona R/T also uses the 5.7-litre V8, with a high-speed engine controller to increase output by 10 hp. The model adds black trunk lid and hood accents, Hemi Orange engine cover, matching body-colour accent stitching and Daytona logo on the front seats, body-colour centre stack bezel, shifter and steering wheel stitching, and Daytona badges.
The SRT8 uses the 6.1-litre V8 with five-speed automatic, and includes all the features of the R/T plus unique front fascia and rear spoiler, brake duct system, hood scoop, sport front seats, 20-inch forged wheels, red Brembo brake calipers, increased output fuel pump, lower ride height and custom cluster graphics with 300 km/h speedometer.
Critics complain that a real Charger doesn’t have four doors, but they can wait for the upcoming Challenger coupe; this Charger offers power from warm to white-hot, while throwing in a comfortable and roomy interior.
Like the 300 and Magnum, the 5.7-litre Hemi features Multi-Displacement System (MDS), which seamlessly deactivates half the cylinders when full power is not needed, for improved fuel economy (the 6.1-litre is full power all the time). The styling is understated, but with near 50/50 weight distribution, and now available all-wheel drive, the Charger is a pleasurable performer at a relatively decent price.