2012 Chrysler 300 SRT8, Dodge Charger SRT8, Challenger SRT8 and Grand Cherokee SRT8 pricing

Article by Christian Andrei, on July 18, 2011

Pricing for the first four models on Chrysler’s SRT performance brand has been revealed. These vehicles are the following: the Chrysler 300 SRT8, Dodge Charger SRT8, Dodge Challenger SRT8 and Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8. Production will start towards the later part of July and dealerships will start receiving them before the third quarter ends.

The 2012 Dodge Charger SRT8 is priced at $46,660. The 2012 Chrysler 300 SRT8 has a price of $47,995. The 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 costs $55,295. The 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT8 is being sold for $44,077.

These prices exclude a $1,300 gas guzzler tax on the automatic transmission and $1,000 for the six-speed manual. Prices include shipping cost of $825.

The 2012 Challenger is based on the 2011 model; however, the 300, Charger and Grand Cherokee are new. These performance cars are powered by a 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 engine that delivers 470 hp at 6,000 rpm and 470 lb. ft. of torque at 4,300 rpm in the Challenger, Charger and 300.

While the horsepower is at the same level as that of the Grand Cherokee, its torque is a bit different at 465 lb. ft. at 4,200 rpm. With this figure, it is the most powerful Hemi V-8 Chrysler ever built. During the media launch of the vehicles, Ralph Gilles, the CEO of the SRT brand, said that the company had to deal with worries on just how it is selling these models “in this day and age.”

To get over this obstacle, Chrysler made these vehicles both significantly more powerful and efficient. It also marks the first time that Chrysler's cylinder deactivation technology is offered on these SRT engines. This technology optimizes fuel economy by shutting down four of the eight cylinders at freeway speeds.

Using the 2011 Chrysler 300 sedan as a basis, the performance engineering team at Street and Racing Technology has come out with a modified model, one that not only continues the world-class luxury experience, but also offers what may be the best handling and the most powerful model to come from Chrysler. Indeed, while the 2011 Chrysler 300 does have an attractive design and the stylish proportions, the 2012 Chrysler 300 SRT8 now brings in high-performance hardware, resulting in a model that combines luxury with handling and power. Maximum output for this version has been set at 465 horsepower with peak torque coming in at 465 lb.-ft.

This is truly the car for those who prefer adrenaline-filled drive and heart pounding excitement but not at the cost of advanced features or comfort. The figures mentioned are made possible due to the new HEMI 6.4-liter V-8 engine, the first time such an engine has been equipped to the brand’s line-up. It serves as a replacement to the HEMI 6.1-liter V-8 engine and is superior by 40 horsepower. In terms of torque, it’s higher by 45 lb.-ft.

This is not the only improvement in the torque as there is an 80 lb.-ft. once it reaches 2,900 rpm. This ensures better straight-line performance and even enhanced standing starts. With the performance-tuned motor mounts included, both ride control and stability are better no matter what the speed is. There is also the high-lift camshaft that has cam phasing and when combined with the active intake manifold, ensures that high-end power is optimized while low-end torque is at maximum.

Other performance metrics include acceleration from 0 mph to 60 mph within the high 4-second range. Quarter mile meanwhile is somewhere in the high 12-second range with 0-100-0 mph in barely 16 seconds. Stopping power has been measured to be 60 mph to 0 mph in 120 feet with top speed coming in at 175 mph. Despite these amazing figures, fuel economy has been estimated to be better by 25%.

This was made possible by the 2012 active valve exhaust system which ensures that the Fuel Saver technology, under a four-cylinder mode, is able to activate under a broader rpm range. Installing the new active exhaust system made sure that the mid and rear straight-through mufflers give that throaty sound when there’s under engine load. With the Chrysler 300 SRT8 entering the 2012 line-up of Chrysler, it reminds one of the 155 Chrysler 300, the brand’s high performance and original production car.

Among others, it is celebrated for its excellent luxurious feel, amazing engineering, the use of strong yet simple lines, and the outstanding performance. It was also the first to be fitted with the American V-8 engine that could deliver 300 horsepower, hence the title Chrysler 300, or C-300. It was designed by Virgil Exner, the same one who completely redesigned the brand’s entire line and who made in 1955 what was known as "The Forward Look".

His designs were indeed strong but simple, even if the sides did not have chrome. In fact, it was Exner who is credited for making the illusion of a forward and fast movement. During that time, the C-300 won not only the road course at Daytona back in 1955, but also the "flying mile". By 1956, the brand came out with the 300B version who also won these two events. The brand’s 300s had also ruled NASCAR for 1955 and 1956 by winning as overall champion in these two years.

It therefore cemented its reputation as a luxurious and legendary performance car. As a result, these letter cars, or the Beautiful Brutes as they would later be known, became some of the most sought after from Chrysler.

For those who will avail of the Chrysler Group SRT model, they will get an opportunity to have the SRT Track Experience which is a one day lesson on professional driving from the Richard Petty Racing School. This lesson is aimed at maximizing driving skills and knowledge, whether on the streets or the racing circuits. Sessions are typically done all throughout the year at select tracks.

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