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Performance Battle: 1970 Dodge Challenger vs 2019 Dodge Challenger

Mopar enthusiasts all love a strong engine growl, aggressive exhaust notes, and more power, as seen in the latest Dodge Challenger R/T. The modern muscle car is strikingly similar to its classic counterpart, the 1970 Challenger R/T Hardtop, but its also dramatically different in others.

“For those of us with an uncle who still drives his 1970-something muscle car, we’re always arguing the merits of the newer models,” says Ryan Germeroth, parts manager at MOPARPartsOnSale.com.

To settle the dispute, Germeroth and his team at MOPARPartsOnSale.com decided to compare the two models. 

The results show that despite an almost 50-year difference between the two vehicles, the latest Dodge Challenger R/T lags behind the 1970 Challenger R/T Hardtop in terms of horsepower, torque and price.

“The 2019 Challenger line-up packs some great performance and power, but, unfortunately, you have drop about another four grand on a Scat Pack to blow past the horsepower and torque of the 1970 version. The direct comparison makes the 2019 Challenger look underwhelming.”

Here are some highlights from the comparison chart:

  • With the recorded ¼ mile time of ~14.1 seconds on the 1970 model, it looks possible that it could beat or at least tie the 2019’s 13.7 seconds in the right circumstances.
  • The output looks like this: The 1970 R/T has 425 hp and 490 lb-ft of torque while the 2019 R/T delivers 375 hp and 410 lb-ft of torque.
  • The MSRP, when adjusted for inflation, of the 1970 model is $8,329 less than the MSRP on the 2019 R/T.

“Of course, Dodge has made great strides in the comfort, grip, handling and other modern perks with this newer version,” says Germeroth. “Still, I think anyone who enjoys the newer muscle cars should experience the character and purity of driving one of these early versions. I get why my uncle maintains his opinion about his old Challenger.”

For more information, see MOPARPartsOnSale.com.

About the author

Nicole Ellan James

As an automotive journalist and avid car enthusiast, Nicole Ellan James has a passion for automotive that is reflected in every aspect of her lifestyle. Follow Nicole on Instagram and Facebook - @nicoleeellan
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