Hellcat Challenger Beats Trackhawk in Supercharged Battle: Track Time Tuesday

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Mopar monsters packing the Hellcat Hemi go head-to-head, with the lighter Challenger out-digging the all-wheel-drive Jeep.

This week’s Track Time Tuesday video comes to us from the YouTube channel of Jay Anderson and it features his Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat taking on a Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk in a quarter mile drag race. In stock form, these two machines run similar numbers on paper, but the all-wheel-drive Jeep is a whole lot easier to launch than the rear-drive Challenger, making running the best times much more common. However, neither of them are stock, packing gobs of extra power and good, sticky tires, but with the Dodge coupe has a dramatic weight advantage, so it is unclear which vehicle will have the advantage at the finish line.

The Competitors

Unfortunately, we don’t have any details on the Jeep, but the quarter mile times make it clear that it is definitely not stock. We will talk more about those times in a minute, but first, a look at Anderson’s Challenger. We had a chance to talk to him and he provided some details on his car and on his passion for racing.

Anderson Hellcat Challenger

“I was inspired by Ronnie Sox… Sox and Martin 1970 Barracuda Pro Stock…. saw him at exhibition race in South Dakota as a kid,” said Anderson. “My Dad took me to 1971 Spring nationals in Dallas. Don Garlits, Don Schumacher and Sox won and I was hooked. It took me 45 years to get into sport, but Hellcat was the ticket.”

Anderson is somewhat guarded with his build, but he provided us with the basic details. He has aftermarket upper and lower pulleys, with different sizes of each depending on the weather conditions, and the car is tuned for E85 by Lonnie Bartley at MPR Motorsports. The internals of the engine are stock; no aftermarket camshaft, headers or head work. The transmission is also stock and the original IHI supercharger is still at work.

Anderson Hellcat Challenger

This Hellcat Challenger is also equipped with 1300 injectors, a dual fuel pump setup and the Driveshaft Shop drivetrain parts needed to safely get the power to the wheels.

The Battle

As you likely know, the Trackhawk has the huge advantage of all-wheel-drive, making traction far more realistic with all of the supercharged Hemi power. The problem with all-wheel-drive is that it adds a great deal of weight, so the Jeep is considerably heavier than the Challenger. The Grand Cherokee has to use that traction advantage to get away from the line better, but when that doesn’t happen, the lighter muscle car has the upper hand.

Anderson Hellcat Challenger

As you can see in the video, the Hellcat Challenger gets out of the hole just as well as the Jeep, taking the early lead and never looking back. On the big end, the Dodge runs a 9.31 at 147 miles per hour while the Jeep runs a 9.94 at what looks to be 135 miles per hour, but regardless of the winner, it is an awesome exhibition of modern Mopar muscle in action.

Anderson Challenger

Crank up your speakers and enjoy.

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"Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500," says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. "He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

"Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

"Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life," adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

"I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

"My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

"Being based on Detroit," says Rall, "I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit's Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

Rall can be contacted at [email protected]

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