Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2008 Chevrolet CORVETTE VS 2009 Dodge Challenger Near Phoenix, AZ

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2008 Chevrolet CORVETTE

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VS

2009 Dodge Challenger

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Chevrolet Corvette are height adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Dodge Challenger doesn’t offer height adjustable seat belts.

The Corvette has a standard Active Handling System, which uses the antilock brake hardware along with powerful software and additional sensors to detect the beginning of a skid. The Active Handling System then intervenes by automatically applying the brake at one appropriate wheel, preventing a skid. A skid prevention system costs extra on the Challenger. A National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study showed that skid control systems reduced single-vehicle car crashes by 30%.

The Chevrolet Corvette has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Challenger doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

The Corvette has standard OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get driving directions, remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Challenger doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies.

Both the Corvette and the Challenger have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four wheel antilock brakes, traction control, available front and rear side-impact airbags and head airbags.

Warranty Comparison

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The Corvette comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 100,000 miles. Chevrolet will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Dodge doesn’t give free roadside assistance for the Challenger.

The Corvette’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Challenger’s (6/100,000 vs. 5/100,000).

There are over 43 percent more Chevrolet dealers than there are Dodge dealers, which makes it easier to get service under the Corvette’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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The camshaft in the Corvette’s engine is driven by a hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs. The Challenger SE 3.5 SOHC V6’s camshafts are driven by a rubber belt which eventually needs to be replaced. If the Challenger’s cam drive belt breaks the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2005 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 15th in initial quality. With 27 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 30th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ surveys of the owners of three-year-old cars provide the long-term dependability statistics which show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 19th in reliability, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 24th.

Engine Comparison

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The Corvette has more powerful engines than the Challenger:

Horsepower

Torque

Corvette 6.2 LS2 V8

430 HP

424 lbs.-ft.

Corvette 2 mode exhaust 6.2 LS2 V8

436 HP

428 lbs.-ft.

Corvette Z06 Coupe 7.0 LS7 V8

505 HP

470 lbs.-ft.

Challenger SE 3.5 SOHC V6

250 HP

250 lbs.-ft.

Challenger R/T 5.7 V8

370 HP

398 lbs.-ft.

Challenger R/T 5.7 V8

375 HP

404 lbs.-ft.

Challenger SRT-8 6.1 V8

425 HP

420 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the Corvette gets better fuel mileage than the Challenger:

Corvette

Challenger

6.2 V8/Manual

16 city/26 hwy

15 city/23 hwy

5.7 V8

7.0 LS7 V8/Manual

15 city/24 hwy

n/a

5.7 V8/Auto

n/a

13 city/18 hwy

6.2 V8/Auto

15 city/25 hwy

16 city/23 hwy

6.1 V8

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the Corvette’s standard front brake rotors are larger than those on the Challenger:

Corvette

Challenger

Front Rotors

12.8 inches

12.6 inches

The Corvette’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Challenger SE are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the Corvette has larger standard tires than the Challenger (F:245/40R18 & R:285/35R19 vs. 215/65R17). The Corvette Z06 Coupe’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Challenger (F:275/35R18 & R:325/30R19 vs. F:245/45R20 & R:255/45R20).

The Corvette’s standard 245/40R18 front and 285/35R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile (height to width ratio) which provides a stiffer sidewall than the Challenger SE’s standard 65 series tires. The Corvette Z06 Coupe’s 275/35R18 front and 325/30R19 rear tires have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile than the Challenger SRT-8’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Corvette has standard 18 inch front and 19 inch rear wheels. Smaller 17 inch wheels are standard on the Challenger SE.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the Corvette can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Challenger doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The Corvette offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Challenger’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The Corvette’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.9% to 50.1%) than the Challenger’s (53.5% to 46.5%). This gives the Corvette more stable handling and braking.

Chassis Comparison

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The Chevrolet Corvette may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 600 to 950 pounds less than the Dodge Challenger.

The Corvette is 1 foot, 11.1 inches shorter than the Challenger, making the Corvette easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The Corvette is 8 inches shorter in height than the Challenger, making the Corvette much easier to wash and garage and drive (lower center of gravity).

The design of the Chevrolet Corvette amounts to more than styling. The Corvette offers aerodynamic coefficients of drag from .286 to .34 Cd (depending on bodystyle and options). That is lower than the Challenger (.35 to .353). A more efficient exterior helps the Corvette go faster and keeps the interior quieter. It also helps the Corvette get better fuel mileage.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The Corvette Coupe has a much larger trunk than the Challenger (22.4 vs. 16.2 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

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When two different drivers share the Corvette, the optional memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, steering wheel position, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations. The Challenger doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Corvette’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Challenger doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Corvette offers an optional heads-up display which projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts onto the windshield, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Challenger doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Corvette has a lever hand brake in the console, easy to use while keeping both feet free and not impeding entry and exit. The Challenger’s foot pedal parking brake is not handy to use as a hill holding device with a manual transmission.

The Corvette has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Challenger doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The Corvette has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. When the ignition turns off, the headlights turn off after a delay timed to allow you to securely get to your front door. The Challenger only offers an automatic headlight on/off feature as an extra cost option.

The Corvette’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. The Challenger SE doesn’t offer heated side mirrors.

The Corvette has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Challenger has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Corvette’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Challenger doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

The Corvette’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Challenger doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

With optional voice command, the Corvette offers the driver hands free control of the navigation computer by simply speaking. The Challenger doesn’t offer a voice control system.

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