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The Challenger has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The GT-R doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The Challenger offers an optional collision warning system, which detects an impending crash through forward mounted sensors and flashes a bright light and sounds a loud, distinctive tone to warn the driver to brake or maneuver immediately to avoid a collision. The system also pre-charges the brakes to begin deceleration more quickly. The GT-R doesn't offer a collision warning system.
The Challenger’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The GT-R doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.
To help make backing safer, the Challenger’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The GT-R doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Challenger offers optional Uconnect 9-1-1, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The GT-R doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Challenger and the GT-R have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and rear parking sensors.
There are over 2 times as many Dodge dealers as there are Nissan dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Challenger’s warranty.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Challenger has a standard 160-amp alternator (180-amp - Challenger optional and 220 392/Hellcat). The GT-R’s 150-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.
The battery on the Challenger is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the Challenger’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The GT-R’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.
The Challenger has more powerful engines than the GT-R:
Challenger R/T manual 5.7 V8
Challenger R/T Scat Pack 6.4 V8
Challenger SRT Hellcat 6.2 supercharged V8
Challenger Hellcat Redeye 6.2 supercharged V8
GT-R 3.8 turbo V6
GT-R NISMO 3.8 turbo V6
An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Challenger 5.7/6.4 V8 Auto’s fuel efficiency. The GT-R doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.
An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Dodge Challenger, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the GT-R.
For better traction, the Challenger Widebody’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the GT-R (305/35R20 vs. 255/40R20).
The Challenger Widebody’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the GT-R’s 40 series front tires.
The Challenger has a standard space-saver spare (not available on R/T Scat Pack/Hellcat) so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the GT-R; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Challenger’s wheelbase is 6.8 inches longer than on the GT-R (116.2 inches vs. 109.4 inches).
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Challenger is 1.5 inches wider in the front and 1.4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the GT-R.
Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Challenger a Compact car, while the GT-R is rated a Subcompact.
The Challenger offers optional seating for 5 passengers; the GT-R can only carry 4.
The Challenger has 14.7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the GT-R (93.7 vs. 79).
The Challenger has 1.2 inches more front headroom, .6 inches more front hip room, 4.2 inches more front shoulder room, 3.6 inches more rear headroom, 6.7 inches more rear legroom, 2.9 inches more rear hip room and 3.9 inches more rear shoulder room than the GT-R.
The Challenger has a much larger trunk than the GT-R (16.2 vs. 8.8 cubic feet).
The Challenger’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The GT-R doesn’t offer folding rear seats.
The Challenger uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The GT-R uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
The Challenger has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The GT-R doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.
The Challenger Automatic offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The GT-R doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
On a hot day the Challenger’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the GT-R can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Challenger’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The GT-R’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Challenger detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The GT-R doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Challenger has standard extendable sun visors. The GT-R doesn’t offer extendable visors.
The Challenger’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The GT-R’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.
Optional air-conditioned seats in the Challenger keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The GT-R doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Challenger’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The GT-R doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
Both the Challenger and the GT-R offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Challenger has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The GT-R doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Challenger offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The GT-R doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
The Challenger is available in both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. The GT-R doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Challenger first among midsize sporty cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The GT-R isn’t in the top three.
The Dodge Challenger outsold the Nissan GT-R by over 124 to one during 2018.
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