2019 Dodge Challenger RT Scat Pack 1320 First Drive Review

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Dodge Challenger RT Scat Pack 1320 exemplifies the weekend warrior mantra: Race on Sunday, drive to work on Monday.

There is now a Dodge Challenger for everyone. Dodge isn’t explicitly saying this, but while walking around the paddock at Autoclub Dragway in Pomona, California, I certainly couldn’t help but think it.

Inexpensive, entry-level variants, with V6 engines sit next to naturally-aspirated and supercharged V8 engine-equipped models, and then there are wide body cars parked next to narrow body cars. Handling packages, tech packages and, now, drag packages all intermingled, shining brightly under the Southern California sun. Dodge internally refers to the Challenger line-up, and its charming color palette, as “Skittles” and I can see why.

Jake Stumph 2019 Dodge Challenger RT Scat Pack 1320 Drag Strip Test First Drive Review

Dodge had invited me, and a dozen others, to the drag strip to experience the new Challenger RT Scat Pack 1320. As the name implies, this latest Challenger is designed specifically with the 1/4-mile drag strip, which is 1320 feet long, in mind.

What is it?

Let’s break it all down. RT Scat Pack means this Challenger is packing the naturally-aspirated 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine, good for 485 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque. Normally, this engine can be paired with either a 6-speed manual transmission, or an 8-speed automatic, however, for 1320 duty, this latest Challenger is auto-only. After all, consistency wins races, and, as you will see, the 8-speed auto is the most consistent choice. The 1320 is only rear-wheel drive only, which makes sense when you hear about the drag racing upgrades Dodge has fitted to this Challenger.

The RT Scat Pack 1320 has beefier axles, lifted from the Demon. That’s helpful, because Dodge gave the 1320 a street-legal drag radial tire. It’s the Nexen SUR4G 200-treadwear tire, but with a custom “Drag Spec” rubber compound, and is bespoke to the 1320. Accordingly, it comes in just one size: 275/40R20. It also comes with the Demon’s adaptive suspension technology, which features a “Drag Mode” that maximizes rearward weight transfer, to improve off-the-line traction.

Of course, being a drag strip-focused model, the RT Scat Pack 1320 also has two very cool, drag racing-specific features. There is a line lock system, which electronically locks the front brakes, allowing drivers to do effortless burnouts in the burnout box. This cleans those rear tires up and brings a bit of heat back into them.  It also has the transbrake, again, cribbed from the Demon. These two cars are the only road cars I’m aware of to ever feature a factory-supplied transbrake. It effectively locks the automatic transmission between first gear and reverse, allowing the engine RPM to rise without the car moving. It’s an advanced form of launch control, usually only seen in dedicated drag racing cars.

It’s priced from $44,995, however, in a rather cheeky move, that price only includes one seat, for the driver. After all, every ounce counts in this 4,150 pound leviathan. Don’t worry, Dodge will throw in a passenger seat and rear seats for just $1 each, for people who want the full street car experience. So, if it’s as good in the real world as it sounds on paper, then it’s going to be one sweet ride. Let’s go find out.

Continue reading about the 2019 Dodge Challenger RT Scat Pack 1320 on the next page.

Jake Stumph is the Content Editor who runs 6SpeedOnline, and several other Internet Brands Automotive websites. He enjoys track days, drifting, and autocross, at least, when his cars are running right.

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