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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have admired these cars since they appeared in 2008 and am looking for a 2009-2011 R/T. It will be a daily driver with 14k a year use. Questions:

1. Are these cars reliable daily drivers?
2. What issues should I be aware of besides air bag recalls?
3. Found 1 in Kentucky. ..73k mile R/T... anyone recommend a knowledgable shop or forum member in area for inspection?
4. It has headers and suspension improvements. Really wanted stock. Do these cars pass emissions with headers?
5. How significant is difference in mph between an R/T and an SRT8?


All comments and suggestions welcomed. Thx
gpm
 

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Really truly. Beware, headers!!!???!!! This most likely denotes that this car was raced. There are SO many out there.
You want a stock one. I am not familiar with the older models. I hear nobody complaining. Couple of recalls.
I would keep on a looking if I were you sir. Leave that for drag racers.
 

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Early model R/T's with automatic transmissions had MDS (4 cylinder deactivation) for fuel savings, but the downside was some type of plastic part in the engine that controlled the MDS function. It's bee so long ago that I don't remember all the details, but there was a recall and upgraded part, etc. Search this board for information. It was a big hot topic a while ago. If you buy a used Challenger from a dealer, make sure they give you a printed report showing the car's service history and that all recalls and updates have been performed. Don't buy anything with modified headers, suspension, or exhaust if you want it as a reliable daily driver. A stock Challenger is a great car. You will love it. I owned a 2009 R/T for 4 years, traded that for a 2014 Shaker for 2 years, traded that for a Hellcat that I've had for almost 2 years now. Thousands of trouble free miles. Let us know what you get.
 

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It should also be mentioned that foam is used in the rocker area so if the car is going to see use in the winter (salty roads) it may be prone to rust in those spots.
 

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Early model R/T's with automatic transmissions had MDS (4 cylinder deactivation) for fuel savings, but the downside was some type of plastic part in the engine that controlled the MDS function. It's bee so long ago that I don't remember all the details, but there was a recall and upgraded part, etc. Search this board for information. It was a big hot topic a while ago. If you buy a used Challenger from a dealer, make sure they give you a printed report showing the car's service history and that all recalls and updates have been performed. Don't buy anything with modified headers, suspension, or exhaust if you want it as a reliable daily driver. A stock Challenger is a great car. You will love it. I owned a 2009 R/T for 4 years, traded that for a 2014 Shaker for 2 years, traded that for a Hellcat that I've had for almost 2 years now. Thousands of trouble free miles. Let us know what you get.
Wasn't it a timing chain failure......, and the fix was some plastic bracket (or something) ?? :|
 

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Wasn't it a timing chain failure......, and the fix was some plastic bracket (or something) ?? :|
I was about to bring up the timing chain recall on the pre-2013 5.7 engines. I don't know what the fix was though.

I'm with others here. You should be able to find a nice R/T out there that is unmolested.
 

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The plastic part in question is the 'rubbing block' that the tension-er pressed against that in turn pressed against the timing chain on the slack side of things. It had a specific shape to set a specific curve to the chain on the slack or return side at certain RPM ranges, with the MDS activated there would be a hamonic vibration setup causing the chain to whip and break. Not great with 'puters, but a picture is worth a thousand words. the plastic part in question is on the left. although, this PARTICULAR one is aftermarket all parts do the same described functions.
 

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Courtesy of another forum


broken-timing-chain-gen-iii-hemi-tensioner-guide-shoe.jpg

Timing chain guide shoe (left two pieces) and tensioner (right)

gen-iii-hemi-timing-chain-defect-recall-broken-tensioner-guide-shoe.jpg

New tensioner (appears the same)

hemi-timing-chain-defect-recall-new-tensioner.jpg

White plastic guide backed by aluminum after recall

gen-iii-hemi-timing-chain-defect-recall-guide-shoe-replacement.jpg

Automatics with MDS only

A Guy
 

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The Bacon Hauler (‘12 Cop Charger)
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I have admired these cars since they appeared in 2008 and am looking for a 2009-2011 R/T. It will be a daily driver with 14k a year use. Questions:

1. Are these cars reliable daily drivers?
2. What issues should I be aware of besides air bag recalls?
3. Found 1 in Kentucky. ..73k mile R/T... anyone recommend a knowledgable shop or forum member in area for inspection?
4. It has headers and suspension improvements. Really wanted stock. Do these cars pass emissions with headers?
5. How significant is difference in mph between an R/T and an SRT8?


All comments and suggestions welcomed. Thx
gpm

You didn't specify what transmission the car has, is it the 5 speed automatic or the 6 speed manual?

Also, you can sign up on CarFax yourself and get one vehicle's history report for free. I would do that for this car's VIN to see what kind of service history and such is documented with the CarFax site. It won't be comprehensive by any means, but it will have some info about the car's past (including mfgr recalls), and some info is better than no info when considering a purchase.

Also, how mechanically inclined are you? More specifically, do you plan on doing all/most of the car's maintenance and break-fixes yourself or paying an independent automotive shop (or dealership service department) to do that stuff for you?

In response to your questions in the original post:

1. They are like most other vehicles - they'll last a long time as long as they are maintained according to the factory suggested maintenance schedules.
Daily driving duties are no problem, especially if you're only going to be putting 14K miles a year on it. I put that many miles on my Challenger in 4 months as a daily driver, and I've had no major failures as a result.

2. If the car has an automatic transmission, you'll want to have the timing chain recall done if it has not been already. You can find this out pretty easily with the VIN number and one of the Dodge recall websites (or the CarFax possibly too). You're aware of the recall with the air bags, so that's good. Basically, these are the main 2 thing you'll want to be aware of going into ownership of the car. There are some other minor issues like the infamous "Hemi tick", but that's not anything you have to worry about disabling the car. It's more of something that you may have to learn to live with, if the car even develops the noise at all (which would be evident upon first start-up during test drive BTW).

3. I do not have anything to offer about a Kentucky location to have it inspected, but it is worth considering having it inspected at a Dodge Dealership's service department somewhere around there before buying it or even during the test drive. They'll obviously be best suited to see any potential problems or uncover any past damages that have been covered up somehow. An added bonus to this option is that they'll be able to tell you without question whether or not any recalls remain outstanding on the vehicle (and they could also perform them, assuming the selling entity is okay with that).

4. Any concerns about emissions can be satisfied by checking the status of the ODBII monitors the car's computer maintains for emissions inspections. This can be done by turning the key to the ON position, without starting it though, and watching the check engine light on the left side of the dash.

If it comes on steady and stays steadily lit for 10 seconds or so, then all of the emissions monitors have been satisfied and the car will pass any emissions test performed on it. On the other hand, if that check engine light comes on and immediately starts blinking for several seconds before staying steady lit, then that means some or all of the emissions monitors have NOT been satisfied yet, and it will need to be driven more to get them to run and be satisfied according to the computer's criteria.

Just because the monitors have not yet all run doesn't mean the car will ultimately fail emissions inspections though.

It just means there needs to be more driving done so the car's computer can check its own emissions monitors and set them pass/fail. If any of them ultimately fail according to the computer's criteria, then the Check Engine Light will be illuminated and appropriate DTCs set for further diagnosis. That will obviously be easy to identify since the Check Engine Light will come on after starting the engine and stay lit up while the engine is running. If you see that, it will fail any emissions tests to which it is subjected.

5. Top speed? Not sure, maybe 20mph or so? Rest assured the top speed of both is going to be higher than you'll ever want to go on a public road-way.

On the other hand, if you're really just asking about the difference in acceleration between the RT's 5.7L and the SRT's 6.xL, the answer is "it depends..." The acceleration of the car is going to be dependent upon the transmission and associated rear-end gear ratio, not to mention it will be affected by any non-OE size tires/wheels.

So basically, it's hard to quantify the difference in acceleration between the RT and SRT without more details, but you can rest assured that any stock SRT will accelerate more quickly than a stock RT by a significant amount. I don't have the declared numbers at my disposal, but IIRC, the SRT will hit 60mph from a standing stop a full second before the RT, and it will beat it by almost 2 seconds in the quarter mile (those numbers can be verified/corrected pretty easily by searching around though). Now that's all pretty general, but so are your criteria. The SRTs come with either a 6.1L engine in pre-2011 models and a 6.4L in 2011+ models, so that's going to affect how fast the car is. And I've already mentioned the other variables that go into all this, so...

As others have stated, the car you mentioned has obviously been modded, and that's a red flag to possible abuse by previous owner(s). It sounds like the majority of folks would pass on the car for that reason alone, and I will not disagree with them. But I will say I do not consider prior modding to be such a black and white issue. Sure, the previous owner could have been hot-rodding the car, but they could have also been just daily driving it without much hot-rodding. Or, they could have been hot-rodding it BUT also maintaining it really well to compensate for the extra beating. It's hard to know without more info, which is where the CarFax report could help. Any info gleaned from it will help provide a picture of its past obviously, and that's ultimately what is in question with a modded car.

You'll definitely want to take the performance and suspension mods into account when calculating out the car's final sale price. They are generally considered to be negative factors that will reduce its normal resale price, so don't let the seller try to use them as a reason to increase the resale price on you. By how much they should bring the price down is a matter of opinion, but they're definitely something that subtracts resale value, that's not debatable IMHO.

Don't forget to check the price of similarly equipped/aged/mileage cars in the area. That will give you an idea of where the seller is trying to go with the car (make a decent profit versus just getting rid of a problem car). If this car's price differs by a significant amount from others like it in the area, then I would be suspicious of the sellers intentions and/or the car's mechanical integrity and likely to remove it from my list of potential cars all together as a result.

Hope something in all this was of use, good luck with it!

Nuke

 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Tremendous information..thanks to all...I am only contemplating manual trans so the timing belt is a non issue?

My bad...I was referring to the diffference in mile per gallon and not accelleration between the R/T and SRT8.

Apparently I ask too many questions as the dealer in KY blew me off...the cars sold...all good as I found this 18K mile cream puff 15 minutes from me...

2009 Dodge Challenger R/T PLUS 5.7L HEMI V8 6 SPEED MANUAL for sale in LAKEWOOD, NJ | Stock #: 9H546567

I really wanted orange but red is pretty nice...only question from carfax is why it would fail emmissions so early on and on entyr indicates aftermarket parts are noted, though I see none...

You guys see anything that I dont?
 

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The Bacon Hauler (‘12 Cop Charger)
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Tremendous information..thanks to all...I am only contemplating manual trans so the timing belt is a non issue?

My bad...I was referring to the diffference in mile per gallon and not accelleration between the R/T and SRT8.

Apparently I ask too many questions as the dealer in KY blew me off...the cars sold...all good as I found this 18K mile cream puff 15 minutes from me...

2009 Dodge Challenger R/T PLUS 5.7L HEMI V8 6 SPEED MANUAL for sale in LAKEWOOD, NJ | Stock #: 9H546567

I really wanted orange but red is pretty nice...only question from carfax is why it would fail emmissions so early on and on entyr indicates aftermarket parts are noted, though I see none...

You guys see anything that I dont?
The whole timing chain recall thing stems from problems with the Hemi's MDS (when it goes into semi hemi mode to save MPG), and the manual trans 5.7L doesn't come with MDS. So its timing chains aren't susceptible to the probs the recall is meant to address.

MPG comparisons between the 5.7L and 6.xL Hemis are misleading IMO. Not only do you have all the variables like trans and MDS to factor in, but let's face it, with 300-400 ft/lb of torque at your disposal, no one wants to drive efficiently and achieve good MPG.

I would say the MPG diff between the RTs and SRTs are negligible. Mid-20s with MDS and no burn-outs; low 20s w/out MDS and no burn-outs. That's highway mileage though...city mileage is a wash I imagine.

As for the failed emissions and missing mods, here's the most likely scenario for all that:

Previous owner got the mod bug but kept it simple with things like a K&N CAI and such - easy to bolt on and easy to bolt off if necessary. Then for any number of reasons he unhooked the battery or otherwise reset the ODBII status messages in the PCM before taking it in for the emissions test. And since the monitors had not had enough time or miles to test and set their status's again, they showed up as Not Ready during emissions test.

2 or more "Not Ready" status messages on the ODBII monitors is an automatic fail for emissions tests. I've had it happen to me before. Once some driving is done and the status messages show "Ready", the car passes the test no problem, but any failures are still on the record and will remain from here on out.

The missing mods were likely removed and sold off when decision to sell car was made. They were replaced of course with the original parts so the car looks all stock again and is in the best shape to sell/be sold.

That happens ALL the time, just look thru the classified adds here on CT and you'll see lts of stuff for sale because car is going or already gone. Nothing to worry about there.

I don't see any red flags in the limited look I took, i vote for you to BUY!!

Good luck with it all,
Nuke
 

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Tremendous information..thanks to all...I am only contemplating manual trans so the timing belt is a non issue?

My bad...I was referring to the diffference in mile per gallon and not accelleration between the R/T and SRT8.

Apparently I ask too many questions as the dealer in KY blew me off...the cars sold...all good as I found this 18K mile cream puff 15 minutes from me...

2009 Dodge Challenger R/T PLUS 5.7L HEMI V8 6 SPEED MANUAL for sale in LAKEWOOD, NJ | Stock #: 9H546567

I really wanted orange but red is pretty nice...only question from carfax is why it would fail emmissions so early on and on entyr indicates aftermarket parts are noted, though I see none...

You guys see anything that I dont?
Where are you from? I know where that dealer is. Wondering if that car was bought from an auction as that place is a broker, not a new car dealer so they have to get their cars from somewhere.
 

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The Bacon Hauler (‘12 Cop Charger)
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Tremendous information..thanks to all...I am only contemplating manual trans so the timing belt is a non issue?

My bad...I was referring to the diffference in mile per gallon and not accelleration between the R/T and SRT8.

Apparently I ask too many questions as the dealer in KY blew me off...the cars sold...all good as I found this 18K mile cream puff 15 minutes from me...

2009 Dodge Challenger R/T PLUS 5.7L HEMI V8 6 SPEED MANUAL for sale in LAKEWOOD, NJ | Stock #: 9H546567

I really wanted orange but red is pretty nice...only question from carfax is why it would fail emmissions so early on and on entyr indicates aftermarket parts are noted, though I see none...

You guys see anything that I dont?
Something did end up popping out at me about that car's details...I sent you a PM with some more info, check that out and see what you can find out.

Oh, and feel free to publicly razz me for my faulty memory if it turns out I am just mis-remembering some details learned long ago but since forgotten...I don't mind, I can take it!! :icon_biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I emailed the salesman and inquired...also asked about the aftermarket items referenced on the carfax.

He says the car is pristine with 18K miles and they are firm at 19,995 with lots of interest since they dropped price.

I like it...don't love it...chrome wheels require upkeep...I want orange with black wheels...I see some with what look like factory black wheels...were they available as an option or are guys painting them?
 

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The Bacon Hauler (‘12 Cop Charger)
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I emailed the salesman and inquired...also asked about the aftermarket items referenced on the carfax.

He says the car is pristine with 18K miles and they are firm at 19,995 with lots of interest since they dropped price.

I like it...don't love it...chrome wheels require upkeep...I want orange with black wheels...I see some with what look like factory black wheels...were they available as an option or are guys painting them?
Nope, I was incorrect with the rear-gear ratio thing. I couldn't take the uncertainty of not knowing whether or not I was right, so I got a second opinion:

https://www.vehiclehistory.com/paging-vin-report-data/equipment-details.php?vin=2B3LJ54TX9H546567

The features/specs page clearly shows 3.06, so I was mistaken. My apologies! I will mete out the appropriate punishment for my brain being wrong with its recall of information later on tonight when I force feed it copious amounts of alcohol and grilled dead animal. By the time I'm done with my brain, it will wish it never even met me!!

Back to the car, I say go with your gut. If you don't love it, keep looking. You will eventually find one you do love, there's no doubt about that. But then again, I have all the confidence in the world that you would also fall in love THAT one once you spent some seat time in it. >:)

I tell you what, if you'll ship it down here to Dallas, I would be willing to subject it to a week-long test drive which would most assuredly put it to the ultimate test of whether or not it's up to the task of being your new Challenger. I have a punishing commute, both directions, and after a week of that (and maybe one or two after-hours grocery runs), I would be uniquely positioned to provide you with a comprehensive report on that car's strengths, weaknesses, and any areas which could be improved upon but not totally necessary before buying.

And I'd do it all for free!! Well, you'd have to pay to ship the car to me and pay to bring it back, but other than that, FREE!!

Let me know if you want to take me up on my offer, my free time fills up quick!
 

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I emailed the salesman and inquired...also asked about the aftermarket items referenced on the carfax.

He says the car is pristine with 18K miles and they are firm at 19,995 with lots of interest since they dropped price.

I like it...don't love it...chrome wheels require upkeep...I want orange with black wheels...I see some with what look like factory black wheels...were they available as an option or are guys painting them?



Chrome is less upkeep than painted wheels...imo. good luck!!
 

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The Bacon Hauler (‘12 Cop Charger)
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...chrome wheels require upkeep...I want orange with black wheels...I see some with what look like factory black wheels...were they available as an option or are guys painting them?
Those are the (in)famous chrome clads, which aren't actually chrome but made to look like chrome wheels instead. They have their champions and just as many detractors, much like any other ubiquitous factory option. But the bottom line is they offer the look of a chrome wheel without the extra unsprung weight chrome wheels would have if used instead. And as you noted, there is some extra effort required to keeping chrome looking its best, whereas the chrome clads do not (though that's certainly debatable to some degree).

If you wanted black wheels from the factory on that year model, you are out of luck...kinda...unless you are willing to unleash your inner vandal/street tuff, in which case you are in luck!

What a lot of folks do to get the black wheel look without the cost of buying new ones, or having theirs painted, is to get some cans of Plasti-Dip (think temporary spray paint) and spray their wheels with that. It gives the look of a painted wheel but at a fraction of the cost and time needed to actually paint the wheels with paint and clear coat.

This is probably what you have seen previously when you saw a Challenger with black factory-looking wheels, especially if older model year. (I still see examples of these now and again, but used to see Plasti-Dipped chrome clads quite regularly a couple years back.)

Plus, the Plasti-Dip is easily removable if you don't like the look or get tired of it. It's just a rubberized coating that can be peeled off to put the surface underneath back to its condition and look prior to application.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Where are you from? I know where that dealer is. Wondering if that car was bought from an auction as that place is a broker, not a new car dealer so they have to get their cars from somewhere.
I am in Cream Ridge near Six Flags...car is in Lakewood only 20 mins from me...and I don't like buying from a used car place and prefer buying from a Dodge dealer. Although to old to be a certified car I just feel that they are more knowledgeable and their service department will give it a better once over.

So the chrome is not chrome? Or as Ralph said "...were going bowling, but were not going bowling..." I am concerned that as a daily driver that will see salt they will pit and rust...

Just not excited enough about that car to go look at it, which kinda' says it all...
 
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