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New York Motor Show: 2018 Dodge Challenger Demon revealed

By Scott Newman, 12 Apr 2017 News

Wraps come off Dodge's ultimate street-legal drag car

2018 Dodge Challenger Demon SRT cover

For those enthusiasts that live their life a quarter mile at a time, Dodge wants to set you free with the Challenger SRT Demon.

The Hellcat-based muscle car flagship has been built with one goal in mind: to demolish the quarter mile as quickly as possible. How quick? Dodge claims the Demon completes the quarter mile in just 9.65sec at 225km/h, verified with a letter from the NHRA (National Hot Rod Association).

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon rearDodge claims this makes the Demon the quickest production car in the world, though the Bugatti Chiron may have something to say about that. Nonetheless, the Demon will run it close off the line, hitting 48km/h in one second, 97km/h in 2.3sec and 160km/h in 5.1sec.

The Demon achieves this speed using a modified version of the Hellcat's 6.2-litre supercharged Hellcat V8, producing up to 626kW/1043Nm in its most aggressive mode. The extra power comes courtesy of a larger 2.7-litre supercharger developing 14.5psi (1bar) boost, while the engine is strengthened with a new crank, con-rods and pistons.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon enginePutting the power to the ground are 18 x 11-inch lightweight rims wrapped in 315/40 R18 Nitto street-legal drag tyres, developed specifically for the Demon with a unique compound. 

Dodge has gone to unprecedented lengths in getting the Demon to launch properly, with a line locker to allow the rear tyres to be warmed properly, a TransBrake to allow engine speed to be built up to 2350rpm and a new Torque Reserve launch control system that allows the car to build 8psi of boost on the line and hit full boost within two metres of the start.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon burnoutElectronically-adjustable suspension slackens off the front suspension in Drag Mode to allow maximum rear weight transfer at launch, yet can instantly stiffen again to improve stability if required.

A higher-speed stall converter and shorter 3.09:1 diff ratio makes the most of the power, which is boosted by an air chiller system that cools the intake charge using the air conditioning refrigerant.

A radical diet shaves 90kg, however given this includes the front passenger seat, rear seats and complete audio system, all of which can be added back in, it's reasonable to assume most customer cars will be closer to standard weight.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon interiorWhile drag strip performance has been the focus, the Demon is also street useable, with the car running with 373kW in standard form. A separate 'red key' unlocks 602kW/971Nm, with full power available with a special engine map for 100-octane race fuel.

Just 3300 Demons will be built, with 3000 available in the United States and an extra 300 for Canada.