The Dodge Challenger Hellcat has been one of the most commonly discussed cars of the past decade, with good reason. With over 700 horsepower at a reasonably accessible price point, what’s not to love? Apparently, though, that simply wasn’t enough for Dodge, which led to the Challenger Hellcat Redeye — which benefits from a few extra horses squeezed from the gigantic supercharged V8. I had the opportunity to drive the Redeye recently around Chesapeake Beach, Maryland, and it was an experience to say the least.
As you may guess, the Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye is very fast. Laying into the throttle at 40 miles per hour makes the back end get squirrelly as traction diminishes, before the wheels hook up a half second later and rocket you to unpublishable speeds with a large amount of supercharger whine. My first few minutes in the car were marked by trepidation, having been warned that I had access to the "red key" that unlocked all 797 hp.
However, that fear diminished fairly quickly. As it turns out, the Hellcat Redeye is incredibly easy to drive in a reasonable manner.
The Redeye’s throttle can be thought of as having two different zones. The first quarter of pedal travel allows for easy acceleration like almost any other car, while the back three-quarters of pedal travel is where the engine really starts to put the power down. This distinction even exists in the more hardcore SRT driving modes, albeit with revised throttle mapping to make it more aggressive.
This honestly blew me away far more than its outright speed and power. I found myself driving this 797-hp monster through the sleepy little beach town at the precise moment that school let out. My path took me through a school zone, and traffic throughout the town was clogged up by a myriad of school buses — yet at no point did I feel like I was in any danger of getting a ticket or causing a scene.
Simply put, the Hellcat Redeye was incredibly easy to drive slowly.
Practically, that’s one heckuva revelation. It means that the Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye — with all of its fire and brimstone marketing and aggressive demeanor — is completely fit to be a daily driver. I honestly would have no qualms about driving one to work every day on suburban streets or congested thoroughfares. The only downside to using one in this capacity is the fact that you’ll get somewhere between 13 mpg and 22 mpg, likely closer to the former — which could get very old very fast. Otherwise, if you’re considering adding the most powerful car in production with a price tag south of $1,000,000 to your driveway … then by all means buy it and drive it. Find a Dodge Challenger for sale