As a professional car reviewer, you never pass on the chance to spend a week with a car like this 2015 Dodge Charger R/T Scat Pack. Not many cars like this get into the press fleet, and it is an honor to be given the opportunity to evaluate it.
The Scat Pack name was introduced in 1964 and revived in 2013. There was a Scat Pack Club that started in 1970 because there were so many Scat Pack enthusiasts. There are still fans of the old and new Scat Packs that have an active Facebook page.
The 2015 Charger is the sixth generation of this car that actually started out as a 2-door in 1966. 2015 also brought a refreshed exterior, which exists mostly of a sleeker front end, but there were some enhancements to the interior too.
The Charger comes in seven different levels, starting with the entry level SE, going all the way to the incredible 707-horse Hellcat, which I reviewed earlier this year. This model falls below the Hellcat and also the SRT 392. The Scat Pack and the upper level SRT 392 share the same engine and transmission, but the Scat Pack is $8000 less.
There are a lot of highlights to the 2015 Scat Pack, but let’s start under the bulging aluminum hood that has a functional air scoop. That’s where you’ll find the 6.4 Liter big V8, and yes, it’s a Hemi. It propels this 4400- pound beast from zero-to-60 in just 4 and half seconds, and it produces 485-horses. Top speed is electronically limited to 175 miles per hour, and yes, I said 175 miles per hour. For us old-school car guys, I love that they point out on the front fenders that the engine is 392 cubic inches.
The Charger only comes with an 8-speed automatic overdrive transmission, and you get Chrysler’s cylinder deactivation system, which seamlessly cuts the engine from 8 cylinders to 4 when at highway speeds. The Scat Pack sits on 20” by 9” wheels and tires that look terrific.
It is a shame that the Hellcat has grabbed all the attention this year, because there is just not another car with a base price of under $40,000 that runs 485-horses like this one. The step up from this model to the Hellcat is $24,000, assuming you can get a Hellcat at MSRP, which is next to impossible.
Moving to the interior, it is very well done. The leather and Alcantara performance seats are extremely comfortable, and displays the Bumble Bee logo. Hit the pushbutton start and the Scat Pack bumblebee warmly welcomes you. The dash layout is good and is true to the retro roots of the original Scat Pack, with a modern flare. In the middle of the gauges, you get a configurable 7-inch setting cluster, and you’ll see the 180-mph speedometer.
You will notice the terrific Chrysler Uconnect 8.4-inch touchscreen display with AM/FM/SiriusXM Radio, Bluetooth, 3-D navigation system and Uconnect Access with 9-1-1 call assist. U-connect gives you a suite of apps for real-time data, and you can turn the entire car into a wi-fi hotspot for multiple users.
For audio, this model has the optional 10-speaker Beats stereo with a 552-watt amplifier. You’ll also notice the aluminum pedals, ParkView rear backup camera, and ParkSense rear park assist warning. I love the cell phone holder between the front seat cup holders.
As standard equipment, you get a heated steering wheel with controls, shift paddles, automatic temperature controlled air conditioning, power heated and air conditioned seats, and a heated rear seat. You also get keyless entry, remote start, and a security system.
Options on my review car include HID headlights with automatic high beam control, power tilt wheel, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, and features you normally find on high-end luxury cars like adaptive cruise control, and collision warning system. It even has brake assist, which stops the car for you if an accident is imminent and you are not taking corrective action.
The level of equipment on this car is more than you could expect on a car in this price range. The only thing really missing is a power moon roof.
On the performance side, updates consist of a high-performance suspension for better handling, a 3.09 rear-axle ratio and a beefed-up Brembo braking system that enables the Charger to come to a complete halt from 60 mph in only 120 feet. The Pirelli P-Zero tires also provide better grip under acceleration and braking.
For more controlled performance, hit the Dodge Performance Pages on the U-Connect screen which allows driver control over a range of vehicle settings, including steering feel, transmission response, stability and traction controls, and for a really good time, hit launch control.
For more normal driving, just hit the Sport Mode button on the dash. You simply can’t ignore the new electronically controlled active exhaust, which sounds fabulous. Other than the exhaust sound, this Dodge is very quiet inside.
In summary, this is a super loaded, super fast car that doubles as a true muscle car as well as a great daily driver. It handles great, is exciting from the minute you start it, and if you need to carry 5 people, they’ll all be comfortable. The trunk will hold a ton of cargo or luggage for those long road trips.
Fuel economy is rated at 15 in town, 25 on the highway, and 18 overall. Much to my surprise, it will do those numbers, even with your foot firmly buried in the accelerator. Your biggest challenge is going to be learning how not to burn rubber at every take off.
I simply can’t find anything I don’t like about this car, I just can’t figure out why the bumblebee looks so angry. Oh well.
What I liked most: Performance, exterior and interior appearance.
What I would change: Truly, nothing.
MSRP: Base price $39,995, as equipped $46,775.
Fuel Economy: EPA rated at 15 City/25 Highway, 18 Combined.
Fuel Tank: 18.5 gallons.
Dimensions: 200.3” long/74.2” wide/58.2” high.
Weight: 4365 pounds
2015 Charger Scat Pack in a few words: A beast when you need it, a family car when you need that.
Trailer Towing: N/A
Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper to bumper, 5-year/100,000 mile power train warranty with roadside assistance.
Car Pro Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars.
Dealers: We have great Car Pro certified Dodge dealers in Austin,, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas-Fort Worth, Grand Rapids, Houston, Los Angeles, Lubbock, Milwaukee, Phoenix, Raleigh, Sacramento, and San Antonio.
Manufacturer's website: Dodge
Photo Credit: Dodge