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The Buzz with Steve Mags - Scoff at Winter Storms in a Hemi Charger

Nov 12, 2014 - 1:37 PM - by Steve Mags
Charging Through the Polar Vortex

Except for 15 days in late January and early February, last winter was a rough one and had me second-guessing the wisdom of my 2008 relocation from sunny Los Angeles, CA “back home” to Massachusetts where I grew up. Snow storm after snow storm clogged the roads of my rural town so badly my regular daily drivers – a ’63 Dodge Dart and an ’88 Chrysler Fifth Avenue – were useless. Despite the addition of trunk mounted cement blocks for traction, their rear wheel drive architecture just wasn’t up to the job in this particularly brutal winter.

Salvation arrived on Tuesday January 28 in the form of a brand new Granite Crystal Metallic 2014 Charger R/T with the all-important all-wheel-drive (AWD) option. Showing a mere 273 miles on the odometer, the car was crisp and fresh. I felt pangs of guilt at the idea of exposing it to snow, slush and road salt. Rather, I wanted to park it in my heated garage and pamper it until spring with the rest of my non-winter fun cars.

But that would miss the point entirely. The AWD Charger is born to conquer snow drifts and deliver its occupants wherever they want to go regardless of Mother Nature’s plans. So I jumped in and drove it, a lot. Here are some highlights of the 624 miles I racked up before Dodge took it back on Tuesday, February 11, 2014. If you haven’t tried an AWD Charger, do it now. Either Hemi or Pentastar V6 powered, winters will never be the same. –Steve Magnante

On a frozen lake I was able to explore the AWD system’s skill at minimizing wheel slip and skids. My low speed antics attracted
attention from a grumpy fish and game warden who wanted to know where my helmet was. Apparently cars become recreational
vehicles when driven on frozen lakes in my state. Now I know. No citation was issued.

The AWD system has an industry-exclusive front axle disconnect feature (also shared with certain Jeep and Ram 4X4’s)
for reduced parasitic drag in 2WD mode. Combined with the 5.7 Hemi’s ability to toggle between V8 and V4 mode the
370-hp Hemi is rated a respectable 15 / 23 (city / highway) mpg.

While my ’63 Dart winter beater sits immobilized, the AWD Charger stands ready. Notice the un-shoveled driveway.
I quit clearing it once I discovered the Charger’s ability to roll through 10-inch drifts with ease.

When the only other vehicles on my street were Jeeps, the AWD Charger went anywhere I steered it. Wearing all-season
radials – and not winter-spec tires – made the feat even more amazing.

My house sits in a small valley. On each end of my street, the road rises steeply to form a 50-percent grade. In my 2WD cars it
required plenty of momentum to avoid getting stuck. With the AWD Charger, I could actually stop the car on the hill, and restart
any time. Wheel slip sensors directed power to the tires with the best bite to get the car moving.

Inside Charger’s sporty cabin, I marveled at how the HVAC system defrosted the windshield within a minute after initial morning startup.
The snow covered glass sun roof (top of picture) waits patiently for spring. Likewise, Charger’s all-wheel-drive system is equally at
home on dry summer roads as it is here. No driver activation is required. It knows when to pitch in – and when to let the rear
wheels do the work. –Steve Magnante
  1 Reply | 270 Views

2014 SEMA Show Videos, Part 1

Nov 07, 2014 - 5:23 PM - by MagnumClub

Steve Morrison, President, Milodon Inc.
-Talks about their new oil pan developed for the LX LC LD...its "bitchin and gold"

Mike Litsch, Dir of Technical Support, DiabloSport
-Talks latest on tuners and details on a special offer

August Cederstrand, Regional Acct Manager, Edelbroch
-Talks about the new manifold that was a result of last year's SEMA Show

Brent Noward, Marketing Manager, Corsa Performance | Volant Performance
-Talks about the technology behind the Corsa Exhaust system

Brent Noward, Marketing Manager, Corsa Performance | Volant Performance
-Talks about the their new line of cold air intakes
  0 Replies | 200 Views


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