The 2012 Dodge Charger continues taking Dodge to levels unattainable with minivans and small sedans. Launched back in 2005 as a 2006 model the Charger continues to be one of Dodge's most popular models in its stable seven years later. The Charger was redesigned last year and only features minimal tweaks for the 2012 model year.
One of the most aggressively styled cars Dodge has ever assembled, the 2012 Dodge Charger looks even more menacing dressed up as a police cruiser. The welcomed addition of the 3.6-liter V-6 engine fills a weak spot that had inhabited the Charger's engine bay. A new eight-speed automatic transmission has also worked its way into the fold, but those waiting for a manual transmission on the sporty R/T or SRT8 will have to continue waiting.
Grumblings about the Charger's shortcomings have been slightly quieted with its recent redesign. Uconnect Touch controls all media in the Charger and offers a variety of different technological features and the interior has been refined in an attempt to distance itself from its rental car special image.
Engines: 3.6-liter V-6, 5.7-liter V-8, 6.4-liter V-8 HEMI
Transmissions: five-speed automatic, eight-speed automatic
Models: SE, SXT, SXT Plus, R/T, R/T Plus, R/T Road and Track, R/T Max, SRT8
The 2012 Dodge Charger carries over largely unchanged after a thorough overhaul last year. However, a new eight-speed transmission makes the jump into 2012 and is expected to deliver 31 mpg in the highway. The ZF eight-speed automatic transmission will push power to the rear- or all-wheels and is mated to the new 3.6-liter V-6 engine laying down 292 horsepower. The "ring of fire" taillights make its debut for 2012 along with a refined interior and dashboard as well.
One of the most recognizable designs in Dodge's stable the 2012 Dodge Charger receives only minor styling tweaks. Some of the most noticeable changes are the "ring of fire" taillights, more aggressive looking headlights, and Dodge's new split-crosshair grille. Most models will roll on 17- or 18-inch wheels but some packages offer 20-inch wheels and a massive spoiler.
The Dodge Charger's roomy interior is filled with technologies like the Uconnect Touch, an 8.4-inch touch screen responsible for controlling all media. The Uconnect Touch received some upgrades for 2012 with hands-free texting, voice commands dictating Garmin navigation, SIRIUS Traffic, and MP3 player configuration. Passengers are surrounded my nine speakers, an 8-inch subwoofer, and a 506-watt 12-channel amplifier.
Performance & Handling
The 2012 Dodge Charger's 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine is responsible for 292 horsepower and coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission, which is likely to be just fine for the majority of Charger drivers. However, if you need more there's always a HEMI V-8. There are two available: A 5.7-liter with 370 horsepower in the R/T, and a 6.4-liter with 465 horsepower. The one drawback to the Hemi: both are saddled with a lackluster five-speed automatic that hampers the performance one could otherwise enjoy from the engines. However, the sharpened steering and improved suspension can be enjoyed in any model Charger.
The 2012 Dodge Charger's available Uconnect Touch media center offers hands-free texting and voice commands for navigation. Uconnect synchs with Bluetooth capable phones for text-to-speech incoming messages and generic responses for outgoing messages. Stability control is standard on the 2012 Charger along with dual-stage airbags, front impact airbags, and front and rear side-curtain airbags. Seatbelt pretensioners all also standard.
EPA Fuel Economy
SE: 18-19 mpg city/27-31 mpg highway
R/T: 16 mpg city/25 mpg highway
SRT8: 14 mpg city/23 mpg highway
- Exterior design
- Pentastar V-6 engine
- Redesigned dashboard
You Won't Like
- Limited rear window visibility
Doesn't play with others
If You Like This Vehicle
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