Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320: Because Drag Racing

Yes, that’s the actual full name of the car: Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320. Dodge says this latest Challenger variant is a “drag-oriented, street-legal muscle car designed with the grassroots drag racer in mind.” To which I can only say: Duh! Gee, why am I supposed to think it’s a drag-oriented, street-legal muscle car designed with the grassroots drag racer in mind?

Is it the Dodge part, the Challenger part, the R/T part, the Scat Pack part or the 1320 part?

Stripped Down

Guess what (and I’m not kidding here) it’s the 1320 part. No really. Dodge mentions “1320” and what it means seemingly 147 times in their press materials about this car. For those of you that, unlike me, did not spend an inordinate amount of time hanging out at drag strips with guys with named “Big” Ed and “Smitty” and “Slo-Poke” Ron and other grease-fingered, knuckle-banging speed-freak reprobates, you will be happy to know that a drag strip is (drum roll please) 1,320 feet long.

Now, it is important to note that the Scat Pack 1320 is not like a COPO Camaro or a Drag Pack Mustang. The Scat Pack 1320 is, unlike those very fine rides, completely street legal. This, of course, warms my heart. Selling race cars to any 18-year-old kid with a big enough wallet? Why, that’s as American as apple pie and phony wars, that’s what that is. Brings a tear to my eye, it truly does.

Anyhoo, what does this R/T 1320 get you? As with all bat-guano-crazy Mopar stuff, it gets you a lot. To the base Dodge SRT, you add a bunch of drag specific components and tech to seemingly shorten that asphalt quarter by ten feet or so. Dodge calls it a “street-to-strip value package,” which is easily my favorite marketing term of the week.

Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack

Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320. Photo: FCA US LLC.

Old School Tech Tools

For starters, you get the TorqueFlite 8HP70 eight-speed automatic transmission. No ifs, ands or buts, this is the tranny you get with the Scat Pack 1320 package. The Dodge TransBrake is in there too to lock the output shaft before a standing start, like a modern version of an old school line lock. This gizmo called Torque Reserve works in combination with the TransBrake, managing fuel flow to cylinders and advancing or retracting the spark to balance engine rpm and torque for max power delivery and launch performance.

“Launch performance” is further boosted by the Nexen SUR4G Drag Spec 275/40R20 street-legal drag radials. The boss meats are all-new and were developed to deliver exceptional grip on the drag strip. Supposedly these Nexen tires give super-consistent run times with minimal burnout preparations, but what’s the fun in less burnouts guys?

The SRT three-mode Adaptive Damping Suspension has been electronically re-tuned for the Scat Pack 1320, and now includes a Drag Mode that optimizes weight transfer to the rear for optimal launch traction. The diff is a performance-tuned unit with an asymmetrical limited-slip set up and a 3.09 final drive. Thankfully, the rear axle half shafts are the extreme-duty, 41-spline pieces from the Challenger SRT Demon.

Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack

In drag strip testing compared with a Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack, the Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320 shaves 0.3 seconds off the quarter-mile time to 11.7 seconds at 115 mph, and cuts .3 seconds off the 0 to 60 mph acceleration time to 3.8 seconds. Photo: FCA US LLC.

Launching & Braking

A Line Lock is there in addition to the TransBrake, locking the front brakes while the rear wheels are free for a burnout to heat up and clean the rear tires and look totally wicked. The Launch Assist uses wheel speed sensors to watch for any driveline damaging wheel hop when you let off all the binders. Launch Assist can, in milliseconds, modify the engine torque and regain full grip before you look like a total grommet.

Launch Control does even more of the same, controlling tire slip during that straight-line burst of acceleration.

The Brembo High-Performance Brake Package with four-piston calipers will be there for you at the end of the run, and the Low Gloss Black 20 x 9.5-inch aluminum-forged wheels with knurled bead seats minimize tire slip on the wheel and look boss while doing it.

Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack

Photo: FCA US LLC.

Single Shot

And my absolute favorite option: The standard interior has just the driver’s seat only. Goodbye 114 lbs., hello lower reaction times and ETs. Okay, okay, okay, if your honey and the rugrats got to come along, front passenger and rear seats are available, individually, as $1 options.

1320. Remember that number.

Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. His forthcoming new book The Future In Front of Me, The Past Behind Me will be available soon. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz

Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320 Gallery

Photos & Source: FCA US LLC.

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