2011 LA Preview: 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 Yellow Jacket

As American as The Star Spangled banner, the Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 Yellow Jacket edition aims to please and shock prospective muscle-car owners at this year’s LA Auto Show.

Okay, lets get a couple issues out of the way: a Brit wrote the national anthem, the Dodge is made in Canada and even though it shouts performance by way of including the displacement in the car’s name, it is no different mechanically than the SRT8 it will be competing with. It’s not all bad though even though it ‘only’ has the same 470 horses and 470 torques of the SRT8 Challenger, it is still good for a sub five second run to 60 and 117 ft back to zero.

“The Challenger SRT8 392 Yellow Jacket adds another piece of performance car nostalgia to our rear-drive muscle coupe lineup in 2012,” said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO – SRT Brand and Motorsports. “The Stinger Yellow paint and interior accents speak directly to the performance enthusiast who appreciates a memorable and collectible color that helps deliver even more excitement and exclusivity.”

This is where it gets tricky though: the manual transmission will get you 182 mph versus the auto’s ‘paltry’ 175. The auto though will run a mid-12 quarter though versus the manual’s high-12 quarter.

Despite the barn-door tech V8 and ludicrous ‘HEMI’ badges plastered all over the car, it packs a clever suspension system (for US standards) with two settings: Sport and Auto, sport naturally firming things up for better handling. This is good for up to 0.9 g on the skidpad, though I am not entirely sure how this a significant accomplishment, given that even the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 or an Integra can pull this off, though I suppose it is appropriate for the given market.

For those using this car to commute or for fun driving, there are a couple features that will excite the nerd in all of us. Due to a super efficient amplifier, the car features a, 18-speaker, 900-watt Harmon-Kardon stereo along with a clever computer measuring 0-60 times, eighth mile times and quarter mile times. Handling g is also displayed.

– By: Sawyer Sutton