This week I am back behind the wheel of the most powerful and fastest mass-produced car in the world, the new 2021 Dodge Charger Hellcat Redeye Widebody. For 2021, all Charger Hellcats come in the Widebody configuration. So, what is the big deal about that? The fender flares allow for 3” wider tires on the ground for better acceleration off the line and for better handling. The meaty 305/35ZR tires and 20” wheels propel you from 0-to-60 in a mere 3.6 seconds.
The big story with every Hellcat Redeye lies under the hood where you find the 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V8 that is putting out an amazing 797-horses and an incredible 707 pound-feet of torque. My tester has the 8-speed automatic transmission with shift paddles. The paddles work great, but depending on the drive mode settings, the transmission shifts hard and fast on its own. Top speed is 196-miles per hour, quite a feat for a 4600-pound sedan.
Even under heavy acceleration, the Hellcat Redeye engine stays cooled, thanks to the functional dual snorkel hood scoops, and air dams around the headlights and under the front bumper.
Moving to the inside, the interior is nicely done and quite spacious. I love the suede & Laguna Leather interior package, and the air-conditioned and heated power seats are very comfortable and large. The Hellcat Redeye comes loaded with just about everything you can imagine.
The Chrysler Uconnect 4C system is terrific as always, easy to operate, and the navigation system works great. The 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system sounds terrific and has surround sound.
My review vehicle has a backup camera, steering wheel controls, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a Wi-Fi hotspot, voice commands, blind spot monitoring, and remote start.
On the Uconnect screen, you’ll have a blast going through all the apps, especially the Performance Pages, including race cool down mode, a nice feature if you are running trials at the track.
The gauge cluster is bright, has a 220-mile per hour speedometer, and an extensive driver information center in the middle that is easy to navigate.
When you get your Charger Hellcat, you’ll get two keys-one red, one black. The red key unleashes the beast to full horsepower, and I am told that when the black key is in use, it holds the car to a measly 500-horses, but I can’t say that for sure, I never tried it. If it were my car, I’d throw it away, but that’s just me.
Hit the SRT button above the air conditioning controls, and this is where you configure how you want the car to perform. Hit custom and you can vary the settings. I like track for some of the settings, and street or sport for others.
You’ve got to do a launch from a dead stop and feel the G-forces pin you to the seat. You also have to try the line lock button. It allows you to do a full throttle burnout with the front brakes locked completely down, but you’ll run through those big expensive tires quickly if you do. If you decide to do this, take it from me, turn the air conditioning system off, a lesson I learned the hard way when I had the Dodge Challenger Redeye widebody.
Let’s be honest here, this car makes no sense. Who needs almost 800-horses in a family sedan? Who needs the bejesus scared out of them every time they hit the accelerator? The problem is the very loud whine of the supercharger ramping up is impossible to resist and you can’t help but push harder on the accelerator pedal.
Handling is better than I expected or remembered from previous Hellcats. There is no body roll at all going into tight corners.
As a Hellcat owner, you get a free full day of training on how to drive your Hellcat, something I would encourage you to do for your own safety. Trust me on this, I don’t care how good a driver you are, this car can get away from you.
My tester has almost $16,000 in options. Most notable is the $8,600 Redeye 2BZ package, the suede & leather interior, a power moonroof, navigation system, the tires, the aluminum wheels, and black brake calipers.
What You’ll Pay and MPG
Pricewise, my very loaded review car with the options has an MSRP of $88,065 and that includes the government’s $2100 gas-guzzler tax.
This car is rated at 12 miles per gallon in town and 21 on the highway, but at least for me, with my driving habits, those are not achievable numbers.
This color is appropriately called Octane Red and it is just beautiful. The Hellcat emblem on the front fenders lets people who pull up next to you know what you are driving, and typically they show the proper respect for one of the fastest cars on the road. It is intimidating to look down and see that 220-mile per hour speedometer, but it makes you smile every time.
2021 Dodge Charger Hellcat Redeye Widebody
- What I liked most: Performance, ride and drive.
- What I would change: Not one thing.
- MSRP: Base price $69,9955, as equipped $88,065.
- Fuel Economy: Rated at 12 City/21 highway/15 Combined.
- Official Color: Octane Red.
- Odometer reading when tested: 3500 miles.
- Weight: 4586 pounds.
- Length-Width-Height: 201” long/78.3” wide/57.8” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 18.5 gallons with the filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: Not recommended by factory.
- 2021 Hellcat Redeye Widebody in a few words: The perfect mix of family sedan and track-ready racer.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper, with roadside assistance, 5-year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty.
- Final Assembly Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada.
- Manufacturers website: www.DODGE.com
- Up Next: 2021 Chevy Traverse High Country All-Wheel drive