2017 Challenger, Charger Get New UConnect - Hellcats Get Lighter Wheels, New Badges
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After much speculation, the information is finally here for the 2017 Dodge Challenger and Charger, and while the Hellcat models see the biggest changes – there is no more horsepower to speak of. Based on the initial information, the 3.6L V6, 5.7L Hemi, 6.4L Hemi and supercharged 6.2L Hemi all offer the same power levels for 2017 as they did for 2015 and 2016, but both cars will benefit from a new infotainment system and some new colors for the new model year. The Hellcat models both get the new infotainment system and colors, but the 707hp models also get new wheels, more Hellcat head logos and a new SRT logo on the steering wheel that lights up red.
Also, in addition to the new T/A models for the Challenger and the Daytona models for the Charger, every Hemi-powered Challenger or Charger sold for 2017 will have the 2.75 inch dual mode exhaust system.
Hellcat Changes for 2017
Since the Hellcat Challenger and Charger get the most changes for 2017, we will discuss them first. Sadly, the rumors about the Hellcat cars packing 750+ horsepower for the new model year have proven to not be true, but with 707 horsepower and 650lb-ft of torque, both cars are still the most powerful cars in their respective segments.
The most significant change for the 2017 Hellcat Challenger and Charger is the addition of a new standard wheel, the low gloss black 20x9.5 inch Lightweight 5Deep Aluminum wheel design. Oddly, these wheels aren’t featured in any of the current 2017 photography, but having seen these wheels in person a few months back, I can explain them as a fairly simple 5-spoke wheel as being similar to what comes on the Dodge Viper. These wheels look a little more muscular than the wheels offered on the 2015-2016 Hellcat cars, but more importantly, they weigh 4 pounds less than the current wheels. Less weight at each corner will improve performance in every way, although by only a small amount.
Next, after seeing how many people fitted their Hellcat Challenger or Charger with aftermarket badges which add extra Hellcat head logos, Dodge has added a bunch of Hellcat head logos for the 2017 models. The Hellcat head now accompanies the SRT logo on the rear spoiler, on the front seats and on the passenger side dash vent.
Finally, the 2017 Challenger and Charger SRT models - both 392 and Hellcat - get a backlit SRT badge on the steering wheel. On the Hellcat models, the logo glows red and on 392 models, it glows white. I have seen this in person and I think that it is an awesome, simple addition.(More on Page 2)
Next Gen UConnect
While the Hellcat changes for the 2017 Dodge Challenger and Charger might get the most attention, the biggest change for the two model ranges is the addition of the 4th generation UConnect system with smartphone integration. Apple CarPlay users will be able their messages, phone system, music and Apple Maps via Siri Voice or the 8.4 inch touchscreen while Android Auto users will be able to access Google Voice Search, Google Maps and Google Play Music via the vehicle’s hands-free button or the 8.4 inch touchscreen.
In addition to the enhanced smartphone connectivity with those two automotive integration systems, the new UConnect system is promised to have a quicker start-up time, enhanced processing power, a better overall look to the screen and a new control system which includes pinch, tap and swipe – much like most smartphones or tablets. Basically, the new UConnect system in the 2017 Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger will work more smoothly with most modern smartphones and the information on the 8.4 inch screen will load more quickly with nicer looking images.
2017 Challenger and Charger Colors
The 2017 Dodge Challenger and Charger will be offered in 13 exterior colors, including four new colors – Destroyer Gray, Octane Red, Green Go and Yellow Jacket. Buyers will also be able to pick from Go Mango, White Knuckle (previously Bright White), Redline Red, Pitch Black, Granite Crystal Metallic, Billet Silver Metallic. Contusion Blue Pearl Coat (previously Jazz Blue), Maximum Steel Metallic and TorRed.
"Our high-impact hues and heritage-inspired paint names highlight how the Dodge brand attitude permeates through everything we do, even a simple detail like a color name," said Tim Kuniskis, Head of Passenger Car Brands, Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and Fiat - FCA North America. "For Dodge, the heritage-inspired names are more than just catchy ways to callout our paint - these names resonate with our customers, speaking to their personality, their car passion and their love of their Dodge."
While none of these changes for the 2017 Dodge Challenger and Charger are earth-shattering, the new Hellcat wheels will improve performance, the new Hellcat badges will please the fans, the glowing SRT steering wheel logo will wow owners and the new infotainment system is sure to impress everyone who gets into a 2017 Dodge muscle car.(More on Page 3)
No exact date on arrival of the 2017 Dodge Challenger and Charger has been announced, but we can expect them both to drop during the 4th quarter of 2016.