By Joel Feder
Dodge unveiled the 2018 Challenger SRT Demon and immediately made some very big claims. From having the most powerful production V-8 engine in history to running the quarter mile and 0-60 mph quicker than any production car on Earth.
That’s a lot of big talk, but Dodge was smart and had it all certified.
Legit, as the kids say today.
That 0-60 mph time of 2.3 seconds? Technically the Demon can, and has, done better.
Depending how you measure it, the Demon is capable of a 2.1-second 0-60 mph run in stock form. Of course, that’s with the optional Direct Connection powertrain controller, no passenger seat or rear seat–which themselves are options–and running 100-octane racing fuel.
How’s this possible and why isn’t Dodge touting it? One word: rollout
Let’s back up. What’s rollout? On a dragstrip, rollout is an extra seven inches you’re rolling before the timer starts. That is the distance between the first and second staging lights at the starting line’s Christmas Tree.
Technically that means you’re rolling, and not going 0 mph by the time the clock starts. This, of course, is viewed as cheating by some, because, well, it’s not technically a zero to 60 mph time.
“Lately some people are trying to go for big stats, so they are including rollout, and they are being honest. Most people don’t know what rollout is, so it’s kind of a throwaway disclaimer. They are saying, ‘Hey, with rollout it runs blah blah blah blah.’ So we ran it both ways,” Tim Kuniskis, Head of Passenger Cars at FCA North America, told Motor Authority. “Zero to 60 pure is 2.3 seconds, but with rollout it’s 2.1, and that’s important because that’s the fastest 0-60 mph of any production car, I don’t care what the technology is.”
Here’s the part all the Teslarati aren’t going to like: Your world is somewhat fake. That claim by Motor Trend of a Tesla Model S P100D doing the 0-60 mph run in 2.28 seconds? It included rollout. The run without rollout? A slower-than-Demon 2.53 seconds.
And the Demon will get quicker, too. It will end up running 0-60 mph quicker than the official, no rollout, 2.3 seconds after people get their hands on it.
How do we know? Because Dodge hasn’t tested it with drag slicks, but you can bet as sure as the sun rises tomorrow owners will, quickly.
THE DEMON IS AN ABSOLUTE BEAST: