The Challenger Hellcat gets a new, wider iteration for the 2018 model year. Simply called the Hellcat Widebody, the car features the very same fender flares and front lip spoiler as the Dodge Demon, but with the “normal” 707-horsepower supercharged V8 of the basic Hellcat. This means that it isn’t quite as wild of an upgrade as we were expecting when we saw a prototype last month, but that doesn’t mean it’s a disappointment.
The addition of Demon flares creates space for new 11-inch-wide wheels at all four corners, and they’re shod in 305mm Pirelli P-Zero tires. These fat tires make the Hellcat Widebody faster in a straight line and in the corners. It races to 60 mph a tenth of a second faster than the narrow one with a time of 3.4 seconds, and the gap expands at the quarter mile. The Widebody finishes the distance in 10.9 seconds as opposed to the regular Hellcat’s 11.2-second time.
Dodge also claims that cornering grip climbs from .93g in the standard width car to .97g with the wider rubber. The grip improvements really come together on a road course. The company reports that the Widebody is two seconds faster than the narrow car on a 1.7-mile road course.
The new Hellcat Widebody goes for a base price of $72,590. That’s $7,300 for what amounts to wide wheels and tires, and the bodywork to house them. Still, it is the fastest Hellcat available this side of a Demon. And at a glance, it looks just like the Demon, which costs $12,000 more than the Hellcat Widebody.