4 Reasons You Should Skip the Dodge Challenger Hellcat and Buy a Challenger SXT Instead

Ask any die-hard muscle car enthusiast about owning a 2022 Dodge Challenger with a V6 engine and they’ll likely say something like, “If it doesn’t have a V8, I don’t want it.” We can’t blame them, considering V8 engines in muscle cars go together like spaghetti and meatballs. However, the base Challenger SXT trim level still exists for a good reason.

In fact, here are four reasons that you may be better off buying a Dodge Challenger SXT over the more-powerful Hellcat version.

2022 Dodge Challenger SXT front view
2022 Dodge Challenger SXT | Stellantis

RELATED: Will Dodge Bring the Challenger Hellcat Manual Back in 2022?

1. The Dodge Challenger SXT trim has plenty of power for everyday driving

Let’s be honest, having a Challenger Hellcat with a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine that pounds out 717 hp through the rear wheels is a formula for fun. However, things can get squirrely real quick with that kind of power. In case you don’t believe that check out this video below for some fantastic Hellcat fails:

Although the Dodge Challenger SXT comes with a 3.6-liter V6 that only puts out 303 hp, that’s still enough for daily driving duties and the occasional romp onto the freeway. According to Car and Driver’s testing, the Challenger SXT could reach 60 mph from a standstill in 6.2 seconds. That’s not bad for a V6.

2. The Challenger SXT is much cheaper than the Hellcat

2022 Dodge Challenger SXT
2022 Dodge Challenger SXT | Stellantis

We can’t compare the base Dodge Challenger SXT trim level to the big-dog Hellcat without mentioning the price. According to Dodge, the base model Challenger carries an affordable price tag of $30,825. That’s not bad, considering a more pedestrian Honda Accord costs around that much.

On the other hand, the Challenger Hellcat starts at $68,320, which is more than double the amount of the SXT trim. It doesn’t take a mathematician to know that the SXT model provides a good value for the performance it puts out.

3. The entry-level Challenger is more fuel-efficient than a Hellcat

2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Engine
2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Engine | Stellantis

Do you really want to drive around in a 717-hp Challenger knowing that it’s getting an EPA-estimated 16 mpg? Sure, it may be powerful, but that power comes at a cost when you have to pull up to the pump every few days.

However, if you buy a Challenger SXT instead, then you’ll benefit from better gas mileage ratings to the tune of 19 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. No, it’s not as fuel-efficient as a Honda Civic, but it sure makes that V6 look a lot better, doesn’t it?

4. The SXT trim level is available in AWD form

2022 Dodge Challenger Hellcat rear
2022 Dodge Challenger Hellcat | Stellantis

If you live in an area where it snows in the winter, then the Challenger SXT trim can get you where you need to go with its available AWD configuration. No, you might not be able to get through a lot of deep snow areas, but having traction on all four wheels will come in handy when the road is covered in the white stuff.

If you had a Challenger Hellcat, which only comes in rear-drive form, then be prepared to spin the wheels and go nowhere fast.

It might not have a V8, but the Dodge Challenger SXT is still worth a look

While the 2022 Dodge Challenger SXT may only have a V6 engine and a softer suspension, it still provides a lot of muscle car fun without breaking the bank. If you like the look of the Challenger, but don’t need all of the tire-smoking power that the Hellcat provides, then the SXT trim is worth a look.

RELATED: Is the 2021 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Still Worth Buying?