Dodge is starting production this summer on the much-hyped Challenger SRT Demon, an 840-hp beast the automaker is touting as the first purpose-built street-legal production drag car. The good news is Dodge has discouraged price gouging by giving priority to orders submitted at or below the car?s MSRP of $86,090. But the bad news is you won?t be able to drive the Demon anywhere practical in its standard configuration.
Before customers can get their hands on the new Demon, they must sign a form acknowledging some of the vehicle?s limitations. Originally obtained by FCA enthusiast site Allpar, this form requires a signature on 15 different bullet points, many of which are quite reasonable. Drivers are instructed not to initiate ?track-use? features on public roads, and passengers should not ride in the passenger or rear seat if they have been removed, as is standard on the model.
But drivers are likely to find other parts of the form, although important for safety reasons, much more limiting. Dodge warns that the Demon?s Nitto NT05R drag radial tires, although street-legal, are not intended for highway use. The form also says customers shouldn?t drive the Demon in wet weather conditions where there is a risk of hydroplaning, or move the vehicle at temperatures below 15 degrees Fahrenheit because the drag tires can lose flexibility and crack. Fortunately, these issues can be easily resolved by ditching the drag radials and installing a more practical set of tires.
Of course, impracticality is what gives the Demon its charm. The 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon boasts a number of firsts for a street-legal production car, including the aforementioned drag radial tires as well as an after-run chiller, SRT Power Chiller, TransBrake, Torque Reserve system, and front passenger seat delete. Dodge says it?s also the first production car to lift the front wheels at launch, and it has an Air-Grabber induction system with the largest functional hood scoop of any production car. It?s also technically banned by the NHRA, which says it needs a roll cage to compete as it?s been certified at 9.65 seconds at 140 mph in the quarter mile. That won?t stop drivers from taking it to the track in non-competition circumstances, however.