2013 Dodge Charger Preview

FAST FACTS
  • 4-door sedan
  • Rear- or all-wheel drive (RWD or AWD)
  • V-6 or V-8 power
  • Seating for 5
  • V-6 gets more power in special packages
  • Garmin navigation system updated
  • New black roof option
  • New paint colors: Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Copperhead Pearl Coat, Granite Crystal Pearl Coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat, and Phantom Black Tri-Coat

Introduction

The Dodge Charger is a 4-door full-size sedan that shares its basic design with the Chrysler 300. It is offered with rear- or all-wheel drive (RWD or AWD) and V-6 or V-8 power. The Charger SRT8, a high-performance version of the Charger, is covered in a separate article.

The Dodge Charger vies for sales with full-size rivals that include the Chevrolet Impala, Chrysler 300, Ford Taurus, Hyundai Genesis and Azera, Kia Cadenza, Nissan Maxima, and Toyota Avalon.

Exterior Features

The Dodge Charger shares its vehicle architecture with the Chrysler 300; however, the Charger rides a shorter version of the same architecture. The Charger comes standard with P215/65R17 tires on alloy wheels, and 18-, 19-, and 20-inch sizes are also available. A new Pitch Black painted roof can be ordered this year, and Dodge offers performance and appearance packages that add such features as a rear spoiler and a unique black honeycomb grille.

Interior Features

The Dodge Charger seats 5 and the rear seat folds down in a 60/40 split to expand the cargo space, which is 16.5 cubic feet with seats up. Standard interior features include cloth upholstery, 6-way power-adjustable driver's seat, dual-zone manual climate control, interior air filter, tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls, cruise control, power windows, power mirrors, power locks, keyless access and starting, AM/FM/CD stereo, auxiliary input jack, USB port, and an outside temperature display.

Optional Features

To the base SE model, the SXT adds an 8-speed automatic transmission, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated front seats, 8-way power driver's seat with lumbar adjustment, heated power mirrors, satellite radio, Bluetooth connectivity, universal garage door opener, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, remote engine starting, and fog lights. The AWD version has larger brakes and P235/55R19 tires. The Charger R/T model comes with a 5.7-liter V-8 engine, larger brakes, xenon headlights, sport suspension, and P235/55R18 tires. It also offers an AWD version, which comes with the 19-inch wheels and deletes the sport suspension.

Dodge offers several option packages for the 2013 Charger. The Sport Appearance package adds a rear spoiler, rear stabilizer bar, P235/55R18 tires, and chrome alloy wheels. The Rally Appearance package adds a flex-fuel, 300-horsepower version of the V-6 engine, front sport seats, steering-wheel shift paddles, 552-watt Beats sound system, rear spoiler, sport suspension, compact spare tire, and P245/45R20 tires on chrome alloy wheels. The Blacktop package gets the same equipment, plus a black honeycomb grille, and ventilated front seats.

A Daytona package for the R/T comes with a high-speed engine controller, 3.06 axle ratio, steering-wheel shift paddles, upgraded sound system, unique interior and exterior trim, rear spoiler, and the 20-inch tires. A Road and Track package adds a high-speed engine controller, 3.06 axle ratio, power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with shift paddles, leather upholstery, heated/ventilated front seats, power passenger seat with lumbar adjustment, power-adjustable pedals, memory system (for the driver's seat, mirrors and pedals), heated rear seats, heated/cooled front cupholder, heated power mirrors with driver's side auto dimming and tilt-down back-up aid, LED map light, rear spoiler, black honeycomb grille, alarm, and the 20-inch chrome alloy wheels.

A Max Quick package comes with blind-spot alert, cross-traffic alert, forward-collision warning, rear park assist, 8.4-inch touch screen, navigation system with real-time traffic information, rearview camera, heated power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, adaptive cruise control, leather upholstery, heated/ventilated front seats, power passenger seat with lumbar adjustment, power-adjustable pedals, memory system (for the driver's seat, mirrors and pedals), heated rear seats, heated power mirrors with driver's side auto-dimming and tilt-down back-up aid, Beats sound system, rain-sensing wipers, heated/cooled front cupholder, LED map lights, self-dimming headlights, alarm, and P235/55R19 tires on chrome alloy wheels.

A Super Track Pack adds sport-tuned electronic stability control, performance brakes, performance suspension, and P245/45ZR20 performance tires.

Many of these features are available as stand-alone options, as is a sunroof.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Dodge Charger comes with a 3.6-liter V-6 or a 5.7-liter V-8 engine. The V-6 generates 292 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque in base form or 300 horsepower and 264 lb.-ft. of torque with the Rally Appearance or Blacktop packages. The V-8 produces 370 horsepower and 395 lb.-ft. of torque. The V-8 has Dodge's Fuel Saver Technology that shuts down 4 cylinders under light load conditions to improve fuel economy. Both engines are offered with a 5-speed automatic transmission with Dodge's AutoStick manual shift capability, and the V-6 is also offered with an 8-speed automatic that comes with AutoStick.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 Dodge Charger are:

  • Charger with V-6 engine, 8-speed automatic transmission and RWD: 19/31/23 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • Charger with V-6 engine, 8-speed automatic transmission and AWD: 18/27/21 mpg
  • Charger with V-6 engine and 5-speed automatic transmission: 18/27/21 mpg
  • Charger with V-8 engine and RWD: 16/25/19 mpg
  • Charger with V-8 engine and AWD: 15/23/18 mpg

Safety

The 2013 Dodge Charger comes standard with the usual safety suite, plus brake assist, electronic brake-force distribution, and active front head restraints. It is also available with a rearview camera, blind-spot alert, cross-traffic alert, forward-collision warning, and rear park-assist sensors.

In the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's New Car Assessment Program, the 2013 Dodge Charger received the highest rating of 5 stars in the side and rollover crash tests, 4 stars in the frontal crash test, and a 5-star overall rating. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety testing, the 2013 Charger received the Institute's highest rating of "Good" in the moderate overlap front, side-impact, roof strength, and rear crash protection tests. Accordingly, the 2013 Charger was named a "Top Safety Pick" by the Institute. The 2013 Charger did not qualify as a "Top Safety Pick Plus" because it has not been subjected to the Institute's new small overlap front crash test.