Mopar launches new Challenger Drag Pak
Mopar, FCA’s performance parts brand, has another big Friday announcement: the all-new Challenger Drag Pak has arrived and, for the first time, it’s available with a supercharged Hemi.
Not content with simply offering Charger and Challenger owners more power for their stock 5.7L V8s, Mopar is finishing off the week by offering performance parts on a substantially larger scale.
That’s right. As far as the U.S. Department of Transportation is concerned, the Drag Pak isn’t a car. It has no VIN. Technically, it’s a part. It’s intended strictly for Sportsman drag racing.
“Today, we write the next page in our performance playbook with the reveal of the production Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Pak, a vehicle that offers, for the first time, a supercharged engine that provides our racers more options,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO — Mopar Brand Service, Parts and Customer Care, FCA, in the announcement.
“Our brand is committed to supporting Mopar drivers who compete at all levels. In 2014, we debuted a new Dodge Dart NHRA Pro Stock car that won right out of the gate. In 2015, our new Dodge Charger R/T NHRA Funny Car did the same. Now, Mopar is supercharging our Sportsman racers.”
The Drag Pak Challenger preserves a lot of factory parts, as per the rules, but what’s under the rear-hinged, OEM hood is an entirely different story. Customers have the choice of two engines: the now-ubiquitous, naturally aspirated 426 Race Hemi or the brand-new, supercharged 354.
That’s the right, the Drag Pak now has a touch of the Hellcat at heart.
FCA’s street and race engines share essentially nothing. The supercharged 354 sports a cast-iron block and aluminum heads, like the roadgoing engines, but it’s oddball displacement (354 cubes = 5.8L) and forged steel internals aren’t found in anything in Dodge showrooms.
The naturally aspirated 426 Race HEMI engine is built off of a Mopar aluminum block with pressed-in steel liners and aluminum cylinder heads. Both engines come with custom calibration.
Additional differentiators can be found in the suspension, where the road-going Challenger’s indepdent rear suspension has been chucked in favor of a four-link Panhard bar, Strange Engineering 4-inch solid axle with 9-inch aluminum third member, 40-spline gun drilled axles, shocks with adjustable compression and rebound and an anti-roll bar. The rear axle mounting points have been upgraded to improve launches.
Up front, the Drag Pak sports a unique Mopar K-Member and custom suspension geometry with double adjustable compression and rebound struts. The wheels are also new and suited for the strip rather than the street.
Inside, you’ll find a complete, NHRA-legal cage and an OEM-look cockpit with the addition of a Mopar gauge pack, driver and passenger lightweight racing seats, along with a safety net and a five-point harness.
Want one for your race team? You won’t have to wait long. The order banks open in late July.