The Dodge Challenger Outmuscles the Ford Mustang for Coveted Award

It doesn’t matter how old you are. You still daydream about driving fast and powerful cars while making vrooooom eart crrrrsh noises. Two cars that may have that effect on you include the Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger. However, the Challenger recently outpaces the Mustang to win an award. 

The Dodge Challenger beat the Ford Mustang 

In a world filled with fake news, this story is brought to us by J.D. Power. Recently, the 2020 Dodge Challenger won the J.D. Power APEAL award, coming in first over the 2020 Ford Mustang. Basically, this award revealed that the 2020 Dodge Challenger makes people happier than the 2020 Ford Mustang

Red-white-and-blue-liveried 2020 Dodge Challenger Drag Pak pulling a wheelie on the drag strip
2020 Dodge Challenger Drag Pak pulling a wheelie | FCA

The Automotive Performance Execution and Layout (APEAL) award is based on the emotional value connected to a vehicle. To measure the emotional connection between drivers and their vehicles, J.D. Power uses the Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout study that consists of 37 different segments to measure how happy a driver is with their new purchase. 

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The APEAL study helps measure how pleased the driver is with the total experience to gauge which areas could use improvement. It sheds light on quality experiences and if drivers can accept newer technologies. 

Everything from luxury feel, comfort, the feeling that occurs when the engine revs, and more are evaluated. J.D. Power surveyed 87,282 drivers who recently purchased a 2020 vehicle in the past 90 days. Then 37 attributes are scored for each vehicle on a 1,000 point scale. 

Dodge won the brand APEAL award overall with options such as the Challenger with a score of 872 points, while Ram came in second with 871 points. The APEAL award is also broken up into individual segments and the Dodge Challenge one the Midsize Sporty Car class. 

Is the 2020 Dodge Challenger a good car? 

So, what exactly about the Dodge Challenger makes people so happy? It starts around $28k, so that causes mixed emotions. That’s one expensive price for a family car, but perhaps not too bad for a sports car. 

A blue 2020 Dodge Challenger drifts at the track
2020 Dodge Challenger | FCA

The base engine is a 3.6-liter V6 that provides 305 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque, which is pretty appealing. Pun intended. You can also upgrade to three different V8 engines, the most powerful of which is a 6.2-liter HEMI that delivers 795 horsepower. It can accelerate from 0 to 60 in 3.4 seconds. 

Edmunds praised the Dodge Challenger for having a large, spacious cabin and a smooth, fun ride. It performed great on the open road, but its larger size could impact maneuverability around the city. 

Dodge Challenger features 

The tech in the Dodge Challenger may feel a little dated, but it works really well. Connecting to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is incredibly easy. Driver convenience features such as blind-spot warning and rear cross-traffic alerts worked incredibly well without false alerts. 

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

Plus, the 2020 Dodge Challenger has dual-zone automatic climate control that works well, a quiet cabin, and has class-leading cargo space. There are 16.2 cubic feet of cargo space in the trunk. It’s also an economical buy, despite knowing that you’re paying for power and not the most luxurious interior.