2018 Dodge Challenger GT AWD: Fierce enough to slay winter

2017 Dodge Challenger GT AWD

Based on the 1971 inspired design, the 2018 Dodge Challenger has some true heritage as an American muscle car. It’s also versatile. (Right, and how many times have we heard that…but this case, it’s true!) The Challenger can play many roles with all the options available.

At the Top of the pack, the baddest of the bad- the Challenger SRT Demon, capable of cranking out a whopping 840 horsepower on high octane race fuel, making it the quickest quarter-mile American production car. The SRT Demon also tops out with the highest sticker price of 85Kish.  At the power bottom position of the Challenger’s line-up would be the Challenger SXT with a base price around 27K. Rounding out the middle is the R/T, R/T PLUS, R/T SHAKER, T/A, R/T SCAT PACK, R/T PLUS SHAKER, R/T PLUS, 392 HEMI SCAT PACK SHAKER, T/A 392, SRT 392, SRT HELLCAT and SRT HELLCAT WIDEBODY.  Now that’s my kind of round-middle.

Making its way in, somewhere between the R/T PLUS and R/T SHAKER is the GT AWD.  Although all the Challenger models are similar in appearance and features, the Challenger GT is special and currently the only model with all-wheel-drive.  Living in Colorado, we see our share of snow, ice, blizzards and sub-zero temperatures.

This Challenger is well equipped to deal with winter weather driving, the GT AWD’s sensors indicate the need for additional traction, the system automatically engages the front axle instantly transitions the GT into an all-wheel-drive mode. The GT’s active transfer case with front axle disconnect, allows the left and right wheel to spin independently of each other- providing more traction and control on ice or in the snow.

With the traditional split grille, and that pronounced bulging hood, covering the 3.6–liter Pentastar V-6 24-valve VVT engine delivering 305 horsepower, to the standard TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. The GT gets some respect and even admiration from motorist as you safely over take them.  The Challenger GT is economical to drive with an EPA estimated 18 city / 27 highway miles per gallon. During my test drive week, I averaged about 22 miles per gallon with a combination of mostly city but some highway driving.

On the inside, the Challenger GT offers premium Nappa leather seating, heated and ventilated front seats with four-way power with driver’s lumbar support adjustment, heated steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping column.  That awesome signature look of those LED halo headlamps and LED tail lamps. The 19-inch aluminum wheels with Hyper Black finish, rear spoiler, and Nine speaker Alpine sound system with 506-watt amplifier all come together for what makes, a very nice package.

I have had the great privilege to drive the Dodge Challenger GT AWD, 392 Hemi Scat Pack Shaker, SRT Hellcat & SRT Hellcat Widebody and no matter which sexy-fast badass Challenger it is, they never fail to plaster a grin on my face and mute the problems of the day.  Thank you Dodge for bringing the muscle and a special thanks to Kelley Enright at FCA, Melissa Schulte at Rocky Mountain Redline and Sammy Gomez.

In summary, the 2018 Dodge Challenger GT AWD delivers performance, power, comfort, safety and the all-weather capability to carve through whatever Winter can dish out.  Always avoid yellow snow and black ice. Happy driving.

Model: 2018 Dodge Challenger

Horsepower: 305 hp

MSRP: From $33,995

Curb weight: 4,108 lbs

MPG: 18 city / 27 highway

Engine: 3.6 L V6

Fuel tank capacity: 18.5 gal

Wheel size: 19″ diameter, 7.5″ width

2017 Dodge Challenger GT AWD