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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I just ordered a Challenger RT Scat Pack on 14 Jun 2021. You can see the basic config in my signature. I'm pumped!! I have no delivery date yet and am concerned about the possible delay because of the chip problems. We'll see. Meantime, I'm starting this thread to find those out there that might be interested in helping me improve both the "street handling" of the Challenger and learning how to really drive it in all conditions to include the skill sets acquired through AutoCross, track time, drag time and good safety skills and practices for daily driving. Wow, that sounds like a lot. Maybe a bit pretentious?? Oh well.

I "campaigned" a brand new 2009 MINIi Cooper JCW in Autocross for 3 1/2 years in 2010-2013. It was my first time for any competitive precision driving experience. I also did 9 HPDE's at Harris Hills track near Austin. It was all tremendous fun. I won my class, D Street Prepared, for two years and took second place in the third year. The MINI was certainly not the optimum choice for the class I was running in. It had a powerful engine for its size which pushed it into a class with cars that, in stock form, were much more tuned to the autocross game. And, of course, in the DSP class they were all beefed up as well. I did many modifications and attempted to measure their effectiveness on the field. The measurement criteria was crude but, I still believe, reasonable to account for both my driving skills improvements (which were massive, for me, less impressive to others) and the effectiveness of the hardware improvements of the car at some useful level.

I see the Challenger in a similar way regarding auto crossing as well as track work. The cars it competes against are, essentially, much lighter and likely their stock suspensions are tuned for those games and their tunability is likely easier. Hence, my excitement at trying to build a 4000 lb horsepower monster into a good street "handling" platform and, hopefully, learning how to actually drive it reasonably well.

I've been reading many of the threads on the site and I'm looking forward to learning from anyone who is interested in chiming in. This community seems to be very friendly and helpful, unlike a couple of other environments I've looked at. I compliment you all on your grace.

While I wait for the GreyLenz to arrive, I will post a little about the purpose and strategy I'm working up. I'll also post a little about the "grooming" plans for the Lenz. I will also seek advice on the mods I'm considering for handling and power.

The latter will come later since it sits in abundance under the hood as it stands. :cool:
 

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Congrats on your order- hopefully it comes in soon.

Here is my .02....

Focus on suspension and handling first. The Scat Pack has a really nice set up to begin with so don't expect huge gains from making changes. You may want to consider front and rear shock towers (Petty and SpeedLogix seem to be popular), front sway bar (the rear is pretty stout IMHO to begin with) and many like Eibach. Put wider tires on the car. 275 minimum (Continental DSW are most in use) and some have gone to 305 but may require different wheels. Lowering spring I have no experience with and the Bilstein shock (being new) will do the trick for a while. Your factory Brembo's are great brakes but you may want to consider switching to PowerStop brake pads.

Engine power. Although this is hard to except, your engine already has enough power to move you around the track at damn near optimum levels- hence the focus on suspension. The 392 is really designed well and there a couple of things that you may want to consider. Add the Cold Air Intake (Use MOPAR as it is easier behind the inboard headlight direct feed to the air box or an open air box if you wish. If you want a larger throttle body (much debate on this one) many have experience low end torque gains and quicker throttle response- with MMX or FastMan.. The exhaust is really good from the factory and many have done a mid muffler delete. You really wont see much on the way of power but you car will sound better (or at least different). Any competent shop will be able to do that for less than 100.

So, I've made my recommendations for a track/daily driver.... let the debate begin!
 

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Yes, if I were you it would all be in stiffening the ride. Did you get the adaptive suspension?
Front and rear braces would be a good start.
Pics when your ride arrives!
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Congrats on your order- hopefully it comes in soon.

Here is my .02....

Focus on suspension and handling first. The Scat Pack has a really nice set up to begin with so don't expect huge gains from making changes. You may want to consider front and rear shock towers (Petty and SpeedLogix seem to be popular), front sway bar (the rear is pretty stout IMHO to begin with) and many like Eibach. Put wider tires on the car. 275 minimum (Continental DSW are most in use) and some have gone to 305 but may require different wheels. Lowering spring I have no experience with and the Bilstein shock (being new) will do the trick for a while. Your factory Brembo's are great brakes but you may want to consider switching to PowerStop brake pads.

Engine power. Although this is hard to except, your engine already has enough power to move you around the track at damn near optimum levels- hence the focus on suspension. The 392 is really designed well and there a couple of things that you may want to consider. Add the Cold Air Intake (Use MOPAR as it is easier behind the inboard headlight direct feed to the air box or an open air box if you wish. If you want a larger throttle body (much debate on this one) many have experience low end torque gains and quicker throttle response- with MMX or FastMan.. The exhaust is really good from the factory and many have done a mid muffler delete. You really wont see much on the way of power but you car will sound better (or at least different). Any competent shop will be able to do that for less than 100.

So, I've made my recommendations for a track/daily driver.... let the debate begin!
I'm thinking you're right about the focus on suspension and handling first. Looking to do the front strut bar for sure...maybe the rear but thinking about the space impact...I'll be using the trunk. I got the Dynamics Package so it comes with the 20x9.5's and 275 all season tires. I'll likely run those for awhile to establish a base performance. I really want lite wheels but have yet to find them. I get the 6 piston brembo's so I'm not sure if there is room to move down to a 19" wheel which makes the prospect of finding lighter wheels easier. That will be the big search...lite wheels. Will also be looking for better brake pads than stock.

Does anyone know a good source to find the real weight for the stock wheels. They say they're alloy but I'm sure they're pretty heavy.

I agree regarding the engine. Will likely leave it stock for quite awhile but will maybe add the Hellcat intake. I found a video that show's what you're talking about. I didn't know about that set up with the lights. Too cool! Will read up on the throttle body and exhaust ideas. Thanks.
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes, if I were you it would all be in stiffening the ride. Did you get the adaptive suspension?
Front and rear braces would be a good start.
Pics when your ride arrives!
I don't know if I got the adaptive suspension...I don't see it in the packages...does it come with the Scat Pack??
 

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Harris Hill! You've certainly put more hours into that track than I have, but I've always thought that a dialed-in Challenger would do well around that track.

I agree with the other posters regarding tires and suspension. The car has plenty of power, its getting the power down effectively is the problem.

If you want to see what the Challenger is capable of around corners, I recommend you follow Wesley Motorsports on Instagram.
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Harris Hill! You've certainly put more hours into that track than I have, but I've always thought that a dialed-in Challenger would do well around that track.

I agree with the other posters regarding tires and suspension. The car has plenty of power, its getting the power down effectively is the problem.

If you want to see what the Challenger is capable of around corners, I recommend you follow Wesley Motorsports on Instagram.
I wasn't a serious tracker and Harris Hill is close to home so that was the extent of my track time. I think you're right...a dialed-in Challenger would be great fun there...especially on that downhill, big out cambered turn on the backside...can't remember the turn number. Moving that 4000lbs around there efficiently would be a trip.

Thanks for the intro to Wesley...new to me. I'm intrigued with their Bilstein set up. I had two way adjustable on my mini and never got good at using them. Getting a non adjustable that is tuned for the platform is appealing.

Thoughts about lowering springs?? Looking at Eibach's. I only want to drop it about 1.2 to 1.5 inches, I think. It is mainly a daily driver set up for a few fun days on the autox field a month and an occasional track day.
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
PURPOSE: Improve driving and handling skills...not winning competitions.

The purpose of this whole effort, besides having a lot of fun, is to configure the Lenz as a fun daily driver that can be used for aggressive street driving if ever needed. I also need to be able to really drive it well. I see autox as a great training ground for learning to drive aggressively at speeds under 70 mph and the technical set up to do so carries over, mostly, to the higher speed driving on track days. Again, many differences but the main use is as a daily driver.

In my previous time with the MINI I found that while I was a better driver than the average bear I was nowhere near as capable as really good drivers. I also realized that I'm not really cut out for prolonged higher speed driving like some. I love it but found it to be exhausting. We usually did five 20 minute sessions on the track each HPDE day. I usually only did four because I was just to nerved for that fifth session. I learned why sustained high speed driving, especially in competition, is so difficult. The prolonged adrenaline rush is much easier to handle for some than others. Having said that, I can't wait for that first HPDE in this beast.
 

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I'm thinking you're right about the focus on suspension and handling first. Looking to do the front strut bar for sure...maybe the rear but thinking about the space impact...I'll be using the trunk. I got the Dynamics Package so it comes with the 20x9.5's and 275 all season tires. I'll likely run those for awhile to establish a base performance. I really want lite wheels but have yet to find them. I get the 6 piston brembo's so I'm not sure if there is room to move down to a 19" wheel which makes the prospect of finding lighter wheels easier. That will be the big search...lite wheels. Will also be looking for better brake pads than stock.

Does anyone know a good source to find the real weight for the stock wheels. They say they're alloy but I'm sure they're pretty heavy.

I agree regarding the engine. Will likely leave it stock for quite awhile but will maybe add the Hellcat intake. I found a video that show's what you're talking about. I didn't know about that set up with the lights. Too cool! Will read up on the throttle body and exhaust ideas. Thanks.
your OEM 20" x 9.5" wheels are forged wheels, so they're lighter than the standard cast wheels used in the other trim levels.

on your order the Adaptive Suspension (3 mode Bilstein ADS shocks) are an additional extra-cost option above the Dynamics Pkg option. If you want to add this - you can do this before your order status reaches D1 (dealer can see the status on their internal systems) if you wish to add the option (you won't be able to add this after the car is built)

for brake pads - the OEM 6 piston pads are VERY aggressive compound and high amount of rotor wear - if you're going to drive on the street a lot, probably switch the pads to something more friendly (Powerstop Z26 series) and the beauty of the Brembo design is that pad changeouts are easy and fast to do...

Probably see how the stock suspension setup feels for your experiences - sway bars are the biggest bang for changing body roll characteristics. All those braces - they're more decorative items than functional items that actually influence what the suspension does (which does all the work)
 
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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack WB; Octane Red, M6
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Congrats on your order! These are really fun cars. Id like to share my limited suspension experience with my 2010 300c Srt8. Stock it handled great. There was an off ramp that i had to take daily for years. It was a tight right hander rated at 30mph. The 300 would take it at 42-43mph with understeer...on its 245/45 all seasons....i installed the speedlogix rear shock tower brace and the car became neutral...to oversteer at 45-46mph on that same ramp in similar conditions. It was great! I then added the speedlogix front brace. The car didnt pick up any more speed in the corner but the understeer/front in push came back.

Anyway i would suggest going to an event with the car stock first to get a baseline of the car so you have data points to build from. From there i would consider adding the rear brace first and then go from there as you need.

I wish i could give you more current input on the challenger but ive only had mine 1month...plus i dont live in the same area so i cant compare the challenger to the 300 on the same ramp.

From what i can tell the challenger widebody with adaptive suspension handles much better than the 300 but it still has a bit of understeer. I could be wrong...but thats what i have felt so far with the limited exposer ive had to tight fast fun corners.

Regardless you should have a blast!
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm pretty sure I didn't order the adaptive suspension. I kind of hope not because I'd rather just get a reasonable system in place that is not adjustable. Spent too many hours trying to dial it in on the MINI years ago. I plan on running the stock suspension and wheels and tires for the first four or five months and then decide what to pursue. Thanks for the heads up on the brake pads. I am getting the six piston Brembo's.

I'm also getting the message on running the engine stock. Watched a few videos that made the same case. 485 hp is plenty for me anyway. I'm not out to win anything. Just want to use the autox and track time to learn how to handle this beast reasonably well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
STRATEGY: Handling performance...not power production.

As discussed above via some good advice, I'm going to focus on the handling dynamics instead of seeking an increase in power output. Given the tremendous weight disadvantage of the Challenger the emphasis must be placed on power delivery rather than power generation. To that end, I have several questions regarding actual technical solutions to a couple of problems.

When moddng my MINI a major consideration was configuring the suspension and wheel setup with an aggressive set of negative camber and toe-in/out specs. That info was readily available for the MINI for running both autox and track and I set up an adjustable system so I could accommodate both easily. I was able to dramatically improve performance and significantly limit tire wear for daily driving as well.

I'm looking for good data on such a config for the Challenger but, I think, since most of the emphasis for this car is on drag performance there seems to be limited info that I've not yet found. Admittedly, I've just started looking but hopefully someone can point the way a bit here.

I will also have questions about control arm products and camber kits, etc. For example, is it worthwhile getting a fully adjustable set up like the AAD kit and related stuff...


or the set spec'd camber kit from Eibach?

 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Alignment Specs for AutoX

I found this recommendation for serious autox which is similar to the specs I used with the MINI years ago. Very aggressive but pretty normal for autox. Tire wear for the MINI was minimal but it was a very different set up.

"for serious autox use with little concern for tire wear

the following would be a good starting point

Front

-2.5 to -4.0 negative camber, between 9 and 10 degrees of caster, 0 to 1/8 toe out

Rear

-2.0 to -2.5 negative camber with 0 to 1/8 toe in


since i cannot get any where near those numbers in the front, Im running over 11 degrees of caster trying to compensate

biggest positive impact, are the biggest tires you can get to fit, especially front

recommend lowering with Mopar stage one springs and adding front and rear strut braces and frame connectors, welded are much better, but require more work"

It will be interesting to see what if I can get that aggressive with the 2021 Scat Pack and manage the tire wear. The tire wear is minimal if you can keep the toe near zero...we'll see. Have get it all set up to be more adjustable.
 

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I'm pretty sure I didn't order the adaptive suspension. I kind of hope not because I'd rather just get a reasonable system in place that is not adjustable. Spent too many hours trying to dial it in on the MINI years ago. I plan on running the stock suspension and wheels and tires for the first four or five months and then decide what to pursue. Thanks for the heads up on the brake pads. I am getting the six piston Brembo's.

I'm also getting the message on running the engine stock. Watched a few videos that made the same case. 485 hp is plenty for me anyway. I'm not out to win anything. Just want to use the autox and track time to learn how to handle this beast reasonably well.
As Hal said, you may still be able to add the Adaptive Suspension. Check with your dealer. I would highly recommend it. I love mine.
It comes as part of the WB package I think. That's what I got.
 

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2021 Challenger R/T Scat Pack A8
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I called the dealer and it turns out they just diverted a unit to arrive here around 12 July. Another dealer had placed an order exactly the same as mine but with no buyer lined up so they designated it to my order and back ordered for the other dealer. So instead of a 2 month+ wait it will be about 4 weeks total.
 

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2018 Scat Pack SHAKER in Plum Crazy
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I called the dealer and it turns out they just diverted a unit to arrive here around 12 July. Another dealer had placed an order exactly the same as mine but with no buyer lined up so they designated it to my order and back ordered for the other dealer. So instead of a 2 month+ wait it will be about 4 weeks total.
Will it still have "Built for yourname" on the sticker?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
CURRENT BUILD PLAN: Subject to much change, of course. Arrival of the Lenz is currently expected to be 15 July.

Again, the strategy is to focus on handling and leave the engine alone except maybe for a few fun things. A qualifier for the strategy is that I plan to keep this beast till I die so I'm looking to pamper the mechanicals and exterior for the long term. Here's the current prioritized list of mods. Input welcomed.

1. Ceramic coating. Considering both a PPF for the front half with ceramic over all to include the wheels, even though I will likely get another set of wheels at some point. I will not do this myself. Will do a few cosmetic things like blackening reflectors and rock guards, etc, first. Will also include ceramic tinting for the windows.

2. AAD Oil Catch Can.

3. StopTech Stainless Braided Brake Lines and a good set of pads for the street will do for autox and a different set for track.

4. Eibach Sport-plus Suspension Kit. I think I did order the ADS but I also think this kit will be compatible. Need to do more research and especially open to input here. I want to lower it by about 1.5 to 2 inches max.

5. AAD Blood Red Control Arm Kit. This is a big cost but my thinking is if handling is my big focus why not set up with all the adjustability this affords given I plan much autox, some track time and hopefully, a couple of runs at the drag game...all with a daily driver. Also thinking this should maybe happen before the Eibach suspension kit??

6. Mopar Challenger Strut bars front and rear. Maybe a chassis stiffening system.

This is the plan for the first year. I plan to gather some autox data around the stock performance, then a couple or three months after each of the biggies...items 4 and 5. Measuring effectiveness of each upgrade is not easy but I have a system I used with the MINI and autox which I think works reasonably well. I'll do another post on that when I get there.

7. Wheels and tires. I will run the stock wheels and tires for this first year while I search for the final solution so, I'll be running 275's square. In talking to one of the top national autox'ers he thinks that running the 275's or 285's front and the 305's rear might be better with all that power. He thinks that the understeer would be less than I might think. This will be the biggest challenge...to get truly lite 20"wheels is likely going to be a big expense.

8. Hellcat CAI at some point...mostly for looks and fun.

Thoughts??
 

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For autocrossing, the only thing I personally would buy is a helmet. And if doing it as a hobby, the most seriously sticky tires allowed in the stock class with the cheapest wheels I could put them on. That is the most important part of autocrossing from what I know (which isn't a lot, but I have done it several times). Also a Challenger is too wide for it, The narrower a car is for stuff like that is a huge benefit, actual cornering ability isn't as important as the slalom/chicane stuff where a narrower car can go through much faster due to not needing to "fit the width" and "make the turn". Take any 2 cars that can corner at the same G's and the narrower/lighter will always win in autocross/solo. (well, not always...)
 
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Alignment Specs for AutoX

I found this recommendation for serious autox which is similar to the specs I used with the MINI years ago. Very aggressive but pretty normal for autox. Tire wear for the MINI was minimal but it was a very different set up.

"for serious autox use with little concern for tire wear

the following would be a good starting point

Front

-2.5 to -4.0 negative camber, between 9 and 10 degrees of caster, 0 to 1/8 toe out

Rear

-2.0 to -2.5 negative camber with 0 to 1/8 toe in


since i cannot get any where near those numbers in the front, Im running over 11 degrees of caster trying to compensate

biggest positive impact, are the biggest tires you can get to fit, especially front

recommend lowering with Mopar stage one springs and adding front and rear strut braces and frame connectors, welded are much better, but require more work"

It will be interesting to see what if I can get that aggressive with the 2021 Scat Pack and manage the tire wear. The tire wear is minimal if you can keep the toe near zero...we'll see. Have get it all set up to be more adjustable.
way too much caster, -2.4 camber is preferred but will eat tires, 8 to 8.5 caster front preferably

and 1.2 to 1.4 negative camber in the rear

the Continental Extreme Contact are good tires but not competitive in autox,

need to look at the Falkens RT660 or BFg Rivals 1.5s etc

first recommendation, front and rear strut braces and frame connectors, then lower the car and depending on whether you have dynamic or not, coil overs etc

better brake pads, dedicated track pads etc

ps, be ready to have your butt handed to you by cars that weight 800 to 1000 less
 
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