FCA pumps up performance cred with Dodge Demon, Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk

The Demon is intended to be Dodge's new performance halo. Photo credit: BLOOMBERG

Dodge has created a specialized version of its 8-year-old Challenger coupe specifically for drag racing by cutting weight, increasing horsepower and making other changes to boost acceleration off the line.

The street-legal Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is outfitted with a modified version of the 6.2-liter supercharged and intercooled Hellcat engine that produces 840 hp, or 133 hp more than the standard 707-hp Hellcat Challenger. The engine is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission with a torque converter capable of sending the Demon’s 770 pounds-feet of torque to the rear wheels.

The Demon is one of two high-performance vehicles using the 6.2-liter Hellcat V-8 engine that Fiat Chrysler inntroduced at the New York auto show, along with a 707-hp Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

The Dodge Challenger Demon is outfitted with a modified version of the 6.2-liter supercharged and intercooled Hellcat engine that produces 840 hp, or 133 hp more than the standard 707-hp Hellcat Challenger.

The Demon is intended to be Dodge’s new performance halo, especially as sales of the 707-hp Hellcat Charger and Challenger cool and production of the 650-hp Viper ends in late August.

The limited edition Challenger Demon is outfitted with a large hood scoop to boost cold air intake, helping performance. It sheds 232 pounds, in part by ditching its nondriving seats. It will be outfitted with barely street-legal P315/40R-18 Nitto drag radial tires.

Inside the sparsely outfitted cabin, Demon uses FCA’s 8.4-inch touch-screen infotainment system, the Demon features special performance pages that provide performance feedback to the driver in real time.

Dodge has been hyping the Demon for months with weekly teaser videos hinting at its performance specifications, as well as its loud exhaust note. Pricing was not announced. The Demon is expected to go on sale at U.S. dealerships this year.

Jeep also showed off a Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk outfitted with the supercharged 707-hp engine that produces 645 pounds-feet of torque.

Jeep said the Trackhawk was capable of accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and achieving a top speed of 180 mph. The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is expected in U.S. showrooms in the fourth quarter, FCA said.

You can reach Larry P. Vellequette at lvellequette@crain.com -- Follow Larry P. on Twitter: @LarryVellequett

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