Muscle cars are back in the scene, what with excellent models from Ford, Dodge, and Chevrolet now available. Two models—the 2016 Ford Mustang and the 2015 Dodge Challenger—are particularly getting a lot of praises because of their relatively reasonable prices and high quality performance.
The 2016 Ford Mustang
The Ford Mustang was successfully reinvented last year, with new gadgets, interior, and styling complementing the suspension. A turbocharged, 4-cylinder engine was also added to the list of engines available for the famed pony car.
In 2016, the Ford Mustang returns with three option packages including the highly anticipated Mustang Shelby GT350. The 2016 Mustang, however, is a very modern sports coupe with a comfy and upscale interior, independent rear suspension, and high-tech amenities you would expect from a 21st century car. Plus there’s also a good list of engines to choose from, including a turbocharged 4-cylinder.
Speaking of engines, the three engine options are all powerful enough to impress even the most discriminating of motorist. The base V6 Mustang has the 3.7 liter V6 engine with output of 300 horsepower and 280 pound feet of torque. EPA-estimated fuel ratings are 17/28 mpg for the manual and 19/28 mpg for the automatic. The newest addition is the 2.3 liter turbocharged inline-4 engine with 310 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy ratings are 22/31 mpg for the manual and 21/32 mpg for the automatic.
If those engine options are not enough, there is the 5 liter V8 engine with output of 435 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy ratings are 15/25 mpg for the manual and 16/25 for the automatic. The GT350, meanwhile, is powered by a 5.2 liter V8 engine with 526 horsepower and 429 pound-feet of torque.
Thanks to the independent rear suspension, which is a first in Mustang’s checkered history, the 2016 model is a lot more nimble than its predecessors. This makes the Ford Mustang ideal for day-to-day driving. All Mustang models, regardless of the engine, are quick. Those with the V8 engine, however, have the auditory rumble that some driving enthusiasts are crazy about.
The Mustang also has a very cool interior design. All audio and climate controls are within easy reach of passengers and drivers, and all seats are comfortable and luxurious. There are a couple of rear seats which may not be enough for long term use, though, given the poor headroom.
The 2015 Dodge Challenger
The Dodge Challenger was also given a facelift for 2015. Aside from the high performance Hellcat model, it has gotten an upgraded interior and a new eight-speed automatic transmission.
There are four different engine options for the 2015 Dodge Challenger, if we count the SRT models. The standard powertrain on SRT models is the 3.6 liter V6 engine with an output of 305 horsepower and 268 pound-feet of torque. Then there’s the 5.7 liter Hemi V7 engine that can produce 375 horsepower and 410 pound feet of torque for the manual transmission. For the automatic transmission, said engine has 372 horsepower and 400 pound feet of torque.
There’s also the 6.4 liter Hemi V8 engine that can churn out 485 horsepower and 475 pound feet of torque. Finally, there’s the 6.2 liter supercharged Hemi V8 that powers that SRT Hellcat, with an output of 707 horsepower.
All Challenger models are fun to drive, but there is no denying that the SRT Hellcat is the cream of the crop, so to speak. Its power is so impressive that it can easily accelerate on any given moment, and leave other cars biting its dust. It has a stiff highway ride.
The base SRT model is also generously equipped. There’s an Uconnect infotainment system featuring a five-inch touch screen, Bluetooth integration, USB and auxiliary port, and a six-speaker audio system. For the SXT models, there is a six-way power driver’s seat. Dual zone automatic climate control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, keyless entry, and push button start are standard in the SXT models as well. All Challenger models have multiple airbags and driver’s knee airbag.
There are also lots of optional equipment available, such as the Technology package that adds adaptive cruise control and forward collision warning. A Driver convenience package adds HID headlights, blind spot monitoring, and backup sensors.
Without a doubt, the Dodge Challenger beat the Ford Mustang when it comes to power and performance on the road. The V8 engines of the Dodge model are just too much for the Ford Mustang. However, the Ford Mustang beats the Dodge Challenger in terms of fuel efficiency and interiors.
When it comes to pricing, the Dodge Challenger and Ford Mustang aren’t far from each other. The base SXT of the Challenger starts at $27,000. Ford Mustang prices start at around $25,000.
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