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When you think of a performance-driven vehicle, chances are, the Dodge Challenger or the Ford Mustang comes to mind. Both are classic muscle cars packed with capabilities that push limits. U.S. News listed the 10 best tuner cars, and the Dodge Challenger came out on top. 

What is a tuner car?

A customized 2010 Dodge Challenger convertible on display at the 2009 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nevada
A customized 2010 Dodge Challenger convertible | ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

So, you may be wondering what makes a tuner car. To put it simply, a tuner car is a car with parts that have been changed to make it run faster. The word “tune” is best described as to “adjust” or “change.” Additionally, any vehicle that has been modified for its performance can be a tuner car, no matter its make or model.

U.S. News’ thoughts on the Dodge Challenger as a tuner car

The new Dodge Challenger cars should be in a class of their own. For example, the 2022 Dodge Challenger SRT Super Stock models come well-equipped with a jaw-dropping 807-horsepower 6.2-liter V8 engine. However, is the expensive price tag worth the investment?

You could opt for a 10-year-old model and install a new engine and suspension system to save money. U.S. News suggests, “You might even think about ripping out the internal combustion engine and replacing it with an electric motor.” Whatever you decide, it will have that muscle car appearance that everyone knows. 

What are U.S. News’ thoughts on the Ford Mustang as a tuner car?

If you are a true Ford Mustang enthusiast, then you are probably familiar with Blue Oval’s Mustang. This one made its debut in the 1960s. Another model, known as the Fox-Body Mustang, gained popularity between 1979 and 1993.

When the Mustang was in its early years, its engines only delivered 88 horsepower. If you can find one of those earlier Mustang cars and trade the 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine for something more powerful, you’ll have something special on your hands. Mustang cars already boast good looks from the inside out, so you’re only going to need to make a few enhancements to make it stand out. 

Which is the best tuner car for you?

If you’re in the market for one, you can’t go wrong with the Dodge Challenger or Ford Mustang. Both models have the potential to be incredibly fast, so they’re perfect for the track. However, they also perform well if you’re doing some city driving. 

It comes down to personal style and preference. If you want a convertible, you’ll find a friendly Mustang version. On the other hand, if you want something long, heavier, and coupe-like, you’ll find the Challenger checks all your boxes. 

Of course, other options are just as great, like the Mitsubishi Lancer, Toyota Supra, Volkswagen Beetle, and even the Honda S2000. One thing’s for sure, though, the tuner car you choose will turn heads no matter where your travels take you.


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