Ever since the Hellcat was introduced last year, the Blue Oval and Bow Tie crowd has come up with every reason to hate on it. “It’s a fat cat,” says one reader; “It can’t even handle,” says another; the comments go on forever and there’s no end in sight as long as Dodge keeps making cars that go faster and have more power.
Say what you will, there has never been an American musclecar with more than 707 horsepower off the showroom floor, without going to a second-party builder. Yes, we all know the Super Snake has more power, but it doesn’t come from the factory that way.
Now, don’t get us wrong, we love the new GT350R and the new flat plane V8 that Ford has introduced, and we’re anxious to see what Ford and Chevy come up with. We welcome all three camps to wow and impress us during these horsepower wars.
Chevrolet went for the road race capabilities with the new Camaro and took it to Nurburgring, and it seems Ford is headed that way too. Road racing doesn’t require ridiculous amounts of power and torque, and Dodge already knew they had a deficit with the Challenger’s handling capabilities. But when it comes to bragging rights, 707 horsepower from a car off the showroom floor is still pretty phenomenal.
Just like many of us back in the day who couldn’t afford the halo cars of the 1970s, a lot of us can’t afford the halo cars of today. As much as we want one, if we’re lucky we can try to clone a new Z/28, put Hellcat emblems and a hood on a lower-level Challenger, or lay some stripes on a new Mustang to improve the looks.
What we truly need in these times are videos like the Dodge commercial above that us gearheads can vicariously live through, videos that combine horsepower, mystery, a classic tune, and lots of tire-smoking fun. It’s all good, you can hate if you want. But appreciate the times for what they are, because it’s a great time to be a gearhead, isn’t it? Dodge is doing their part to have a little fun and raise a little hell.