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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

2014 Dodge Charger SRT Super Bee Review: A Big, American Smoke Machine

 

Boldride
 
    Muscle cars are the epitome of all things that are right with America. They’re big and loud and ridiculous and unwilling to conform— but at the end of the day, that’s what keeps people walking into showrooms. Americans like to be noticed, and it’s been that way since muscle cars began making their push in the early 60s.

    That being said, in 2014, there’s one American car that really looks to make an impression. That car is the 2014 Dodge Charger SRT Super Bee; it’s just like a regular Charger, except it has a bunch of power, some shouty bumble bee graphics and it mostly wants to kill you.



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    At 470 horsepower, granted, it’s no Hellcat, but the 392 HEMI V8 still manages to move a massive amount of weight around with ease. Except don’t expect any sharp corners to become your friend.

     All the power is paired to a eight-speed autobox and sent to the rear wheels, propelling it to 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds; that is, if you can keep the wheels from turning into smoke.



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    With 470 lb-ft of torque, it’s not all that surprising that there’s a hefty amount of wheel spin. If you slam your foot on the gas, you’re more likely to find yourself in a cloud of smoke than actually getting to 60 mph in a timely manner.

     It takes a minute or two to really figure out where the Charger’s perfect starting point is, without eating up too much of the tires. Once it’s up and going though, it feels really aggressive and really muscular — exactly how it should feel.



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    Aside from intoxicating power, other features include a well-finished interior, an infotainment screen that should keep you busy for a few minutes, room for five normal-sized people, and a big trunk with plenty of room for beer and shotguns and more beer.

    And at $49,700, the Super Bee package seems to come with all the frills and gills you get on a standard Charger SRT, but you’re still able to undercut a $50K price tag (just barely). Super Bees of previous generation lacked a few amenities to keep this price point, but it doesn’t feel like this Super Bee skimped on much.



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    If you can overlook the cloth seats, you still get the aforementioned full infotainment screen with navigation, performance meters, Bluetooth, and satellite radio, just to name a few. It’s exactly the same system you get in a $100K Viper. Not bad, if you ask this writer, not to mention all the tire squealing goodness 470 horsepower at your disposal.

    But at the end of the day, what it really comes down to is that the Charger SRT Super Bee is a big, brash, American muscle car, with room enough for four frightened friends. It’s amazingly fun. And yes it is a muscle car, and yes you can have fun in an automatic, believe it or not.



    Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee

    Specs:

    Engine: HEMI V8
    0-60: 4.5S
    MPG: 14/23
    Price (as tested): $49,700


    Positives:

    Aggressive, good looking design
    Plenty of power
    Room enough for five


    Negatives:

    Too much wheel spin
    Automatic only
    Gas guzzler