Sedans & Coupes

The Dodge Challenger Beat the Chevy Camaro and the Ford Mustang

The Dodge Challenger is the ideal car for many Americans. It boasts a muscular old school style and blends that with a wide variety of performance options. But Dodge doesn’t exactly get a gold star for its reputation in terms of reliability. So how did the Dodge muscle car win a dependability award over the Mustang and the Camaro?

a red Dodge Challenger in the snow
2018 Dodge Challenger GT AWD

Dodge transmissions definitely get a bad reputation. But in all reality, there’s a pretty good chance that the mechanic talking smack about Dodge reliability is driving home in a 2016 model of this powerful and athletic sporty car. They are more reliable than you’d expect for a big pony pusher. Plus––they have great resale value. In fact, it actually beat the Chevrolet Camaro and the Ford Mustang to win a dependability award.

a parked blue Chevy Camaro in an industrial area
2019 Chevrolet Camaro | Chevrolet

Is the Dodge Challenger reliable?

The 2019 Dodge Challenger earned a 4 out of 5 reliability rating from J.D. Power, according to US News and World Report. That’s above average. To get a little more perspective, go back a few years to the 2016 Challenger. This model year won a rating of 3.5 out of 5––also above average, according to US News.

The 2020 model year, however, sees a J.D. Power predicted reliability rating of 3 out of 5. This is at least average, but it’s nothing to write home about.

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Catching competitors on the flipside.

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But, as Car and Driver reported, Dodge may be moving up in the world in terms of reliability. Last year’s Consumer Reports top 10 saw both the Dodge Caravan and the Dodge Challenger on the list. This is pretty game-changing for Dodge. In fact, a look through the last 5 years of the Challenger’s Consumer Reports reliability ratings shows pretty solid predicted reliability scores.

J.D. Power dependability award winner

Last year, the 2016 Dodge Challenger won a J.D. Power dependability award. Out of all the three-year-old midsize sporty cars that J.D. Powers scored, the 2016 Dodge Challenger wins every category by far. It also takes the overall title for the most dependable midsize sporty car.

The driver of a white Dodge Challenger performs a burnout
The driver of a Dodge Challenger performs a burnout | HAIDAR MOHAMMED ALI/AFP via Getty Images

The Ford Mustang and the Chevy Camaro received OK scores but the Dodge Challenger’s J.D. Power scores ate the others’ for breakfast. The 2016 Dodge Challenger, Ford Mustang, and Chevrolet Camaro were judged over three years on quality and reliability, driving experience, and resale value. They each earned scores in each category and an overall score.

 grey Ford Mustang speeding down a treelined road
2020 Ford Mustang | Ford

For quality and reliability the 2016 Challenger, Mustang, and Camaro earned an 87, 78, and 74 respectively. The driving experience scores were 85, 82, and 82; the resale value ratings were 89, 76, and 78. The Dodge midsize sporty cars beat the Ford and Chevrolet modern muscle cars but at least a few points in every category. The final scores were 83, 78, and 79 respectively.

a bright green Dodge Challenger muscle car driving down a scene road at dusk
Dodge Challenger | Dodge

RELATED: Can the Dodge Challenger GT Do a Burnout?

Is the Dodge Challenger better than the Ford Mustang and the Chevy Camaro?

That’s a simple question with a complex answer and it will always depend upon who you ask and other variables like what model year you’re referring to. But last year, the Dodge Challenger beat the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro to win this Dependability award from J.D. Power. This Dodge has superior quality, reliability, drive experience, and resale value. In fact, the 2016 Challenger actually earned one of the highest resale value scores of all.