If ever a model was offered with a bewildering array of options, it’s the Dodge Charger, a long-in-the-tooth model being kept alive by drivers who crave insane amounts of horsepower in a traditional American wrapper.
And what’s wrong with that? Icons become icons not just because of their inherent goodness.
Often, they stay around long past their planned expiration date, much to the delight of their fans. And when it comes to the Dodge Charger, its outrageousness is its calling card; a loud, brash thumb in the eyes of regulators intent on squashing internal combustion-engine cars.
The 2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak is proof that it won’t happen without one last mighty roar.
With a moniker like the 2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak, you know there’s a lot going on here. Consider it the definitive Charger, which traces its roots to 2005. If you spy one in the rental car lot, odds are it has the 300-horsepower Pentastar V-6. But there’s also a 370-horsepower R/T with its 5.7-liter Hemi V-8, or the 485-horsepower Scat Pack with a 6.4-liter Hemi V-8. But it’s the Hellcat the really roars, thanks to a 717-horsepower 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V-8. Opt for the Hellcat Redeye and that grows to 797 horsepower.
Our test car was a Jailbreak model, a trim added this year on Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody with seven options for seats, stripes and wheels; six brake caliper color options; five exterior badging finishes; four choices each of steering wheels, seat belt colors and floor mats. Oh, and it ups the horsepower to 807, just in case you need a pinch more power.
Finished in Hellraisin, with “Brass Monkey” exterior badges, this top-of-the-line Charger Widebody, with 3.5 inches of fender flares, wore meaty Pirelli 305/35ZR20 three-season tires ralong with satin black trim, black exhaust tips, along with a SRT hood scoop, roof and decklid stripe, it is not a good choice for those who like to maintain a low profile. It’s striking. Its looks lead to foot-to-the-floor fever even before you settle into the saddle.
As much as Dodge upgrades the Charger’s interior, there are parts that remind you the Charger also does duty as a barebones cop car. But the black and sepia interior, along with sepia seat belts, make for a persuasive argument otherwise. Large, wide heated and ventilated front seats envelop and coddle occupants, proving to be sufficiently supportive while the car goes through its automotive acrobatics.
Yet they’re comfy enough to make long turns behind the wheel pleasurable. A suede headliner, sepia floor mats, carbon fiber trim, rear heated seats, and leather-wrapped SRT steering wheel felt a bit more lavish than your typical Charger. You’ll find that legroom is substantial. Although not as generous, headroom is adequate for everyone save the very tall.
The Charger SRT Hellcat’s fierceness comes from its supercharged overhead-valve 6.2-liter V8 that generates 807 horsepower and 707 pound-feet of torque through an 8-speed automatic transmission to the rear wheels. Reaching 60 mph takes a mere 3.6 seconds; top speed is 203 mph, and it will run a quarter-mile in 10.6 seconds at 129 mph.
Launch Control, Launch Assist, and Line Lock come standard; a lawyer who will free you from jail does not. Launch Control controls tire slip while the vehicle accelerates, Launch Assist modifies engine torque to restore full grip, and Line Lock engages the front brakes when the vehicle is stationary but leaves the back wheels unlocked for a burnout.
Additionally, there are three SRT-tuned damping modes: Track Mode, which has the least compliance and the most handling, Auto Mode, which provides a compliant ride, and Sport Mode, which provides harsher handling. Brembo six–piston fixed front-caliper brakes and an adaptive damping suspension are standard.
Safety and Technology
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not crash tested a 2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak. A crash test of a non-widebody Dodge Charger by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rated it Good in all areas of crashworthiness save for the driver-side front small overlap test, where it was rated marginal.
Headlight performance is rated poor — and it assuredly is. The Hellcat comes with blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and active head restraints, more advanced driver-assistance systems, such as adaptive cruise control, are not offered.
When it comes to technology, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard. The 8.4-inch touchscreen uses an older Uconnect infotainment system. Although it still functions effectively and is simple to use, a newer version should be standard given this car’s price.
Assembled in Canada with an engine from Mexico and a transmission from Germany, this traditional, four-door, grin-inducing American muscle car generates ridiculous amounts of torque and speed, making it perfect for traveling straight but less so while cornering. The biggest issue with any Hellcat is grip — specifically, maintaining it. If you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s far too simple to end up in the wrong direction. While not as precise as the rest of the car, the steering is still more than acceptable. This is one rebellious tiger to subjugate, and its allure is difficult to resist. Ride quality is superb for such an athletic beast, thanks to its adaptive suspension.
Fuel economy is as abysmal as you’d expect, premium unleaded fuel is required and you’ll pay a $2,100 Gas Guzzler Tax as part of its sticker price. However, certain things in life are worth the money.
2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak
|Dimension||L: 201 inches/W: 78.3 inches/H: 57.6 inches/Wheelbase: 120 inches|
|Powertrain||6.2-liter Supercharged High-Output V-8, 8-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive|
|Fuel Economy||12 mpg city/21 mpg highway/15 mpg combined|
|Performance Specs||807 horsepower and 707 pound-feet of torque|
|Price||Base price: $75,900; As tested: $98,044 including $1,595 destination charge|
|On-Sale Date||Available now|
Dodge says that the 2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak is the fastest mass-produced sedan in the world, although reports indicate that a Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance will beat it.
Nevertheless, this is a first-rate thrill ride, a muscle car throwback that evokes a time before OPEC, sky-high insurance rates and the California Air Resources Board. Its pleasures increase with its speed, sound and fury, and while Dodge is promising us that such excitement will continue on the all-electric Charger Daytona, it just won’t be the same.
Better catch this kitty while you can. You have one more model year to do so.
2022 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody Jailbreak — Frequently Asked Questions
How much is a Hellcat Jailbreak?
$75,595 including destination charge and Gas Guzzler Tax, but before options or sales tax.
What is the 2022 Dodge Charger Jailbreak?
No, there is no production limit on Jailbreak models.
Is the 2022 Dodge Charger Jailbreak limited?
There is no limit on how many can be produced.