2020 Chevrolet Camaro vs. 2019 Dodge Challenger

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the Camaro and the Challenger have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee 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 collision warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Chevrolet Camaro Coupe is safer than the Challenger:

Camaro

Challenger

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

MARGINAL

Restraints

GOOD

GOOD

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Steering Column Movement Rearward

1 cm

8 cm

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

21 cm

26 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

0%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

POOR

Tibia index R/L

.55/.45

1.46/1.01

Tibia forces R/L

2.5/1.4 kN

4.8/2.4 kN

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the general design of front seat head restraints for their ability to protect front seat occupants from whiplash injuries. The IIHS also performs a dynamic test on those seats with “good” or “acceptable” geometry. In these ratings, the Camaro is safer than the Challenger:

Camaro

Challenger

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Head Restraint Design

GOOD

GOOD

Distance from Back of Head

10 mm

61 mm

Distance Below Top of Head

14 mm

28 mm

Dynamic Test Rating

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Seat Design

Pass

Fail

Neck Force Rating

Low

Low

Max Neck Shearing Force

0

83

Max Neck Tension

417

456

(Lower numerical results are better in all tests.)

Warranty

The Camaro’s corrosion warranty is 1 year and 40,000 miles longer than the Challenger’s (6/100,000 vs. 5/60,000).

There are over 25 percent more Chevrolet dealers than there are Dodge dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Camaro’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 8th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 63 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 28th.

Engine

As tested in Car and Driver the Camaro LT1/SS is faster than the Challenger R/T Scat Pack 6.4 V8 (manual transmissions tested):

Camaro

Challenger

Zero to 30 MPH

1.7 sec

1.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

4 sec

4.4 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

9.1 sec

10.2 sec

Quarter Mile

12.3 sec

12.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

116 MPH

113 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the Camaro ZL1 is faster than the Dodge Challenger (automatics tested):

Camaro

Challenger R/T 392

Challenger SRT Hellcat

Zero to 60 MPH

3.5 sec

4.2 sec

3.7 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

5.2 sec

6.6 sec

5.5 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

7.4 sec

9.9 sec

7.7 sec

Passing 45 to 65 MPH

1.4 sec

2.1 sec

1.4 sec

Quarter Mile

11.5 sec

12.6 sec

11.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

125 MPH

112.3 MPH

125.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Camaro gets better fuel mileage than the Challenger:

MPG

Camaro

RWD

Manual

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

20 city/30 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

16 city/26 hwy

6.2 OHV V8

16 city/24 hwy

6.2 supercharged V8

14 city/21 hwy

Auto

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/31 hwy

6.2 OHV V8

16 city/27 hwy

Challenger

RWD

Manual

5.7 OHV V8

15 city/23 hwy

6.4 OHV V8

14 city/23 hwy

6.2 supercharged V8

13 city/21 hwy

Auto

3.6 DOHC V6

19 city/30 hwy

5.7 OHV V8

16 city/25 hwy

6.4 OHV V8

15 city/25 hwy

AWD

Auto

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/27 hwy

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Chevrolet Camaro uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine for maximum performance). The Challenger R/T manual requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Camaro has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Challenger doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

A 10-speed automatic is available on the Chevrolet Camaro, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Challenger.

Brakes and Stopping

The Camaro stops much shorter than the Challenger:

Camaro

Challenger

70 to 0 MPH

140 feet

176 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

91 feet

109 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Camaro has larger standard tires than the Challenger (245/50R18 vs. 235/55R18).

The Camaro’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Challenger SXT’s standard 55 series tires. The Camaro SS 1LE/ZL1’s tires have a lower 30 series profile than the Challenger Widebody’s 35 series tires.

The Camaro has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Challenger doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the Camaro can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Challenger doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Chassis

The Chevrolet Camaro may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 350 to 550 pounds less than the Dodge Challenger.

The Camaro is 9.2 inches shorter than the Challenger, making the Camaro easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the Camaro (except LS/LT1), the optional memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Challenger doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Camaro (except LS/LT1)’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Challenger doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Camaro offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Challenger doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Camaro’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Challenger’s parking brake has to released manually.

The Camaro’s front power windows open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Challenger’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

When the Camaro with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Challenger’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Camaro offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Challenger has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Model Availability

The Chevrolet Camaro comes in coupe and convertible bodystyles; the Dodge Challenger isn’t available as a convertible.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Camaro owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Camaro will cost $370 less than the Challenger over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Camaro is less expensive to operate than the Challenger because typical repairs cost much less on the Camaro than the Challenger, including $90 less for a muffler, $121 less for front brake pads, $118 less for a fuel pump and $748 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Chevrolet Camaro will be $53 to $92 less than for the Dodge Challenger.

Recommendations

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Camaro second among midsize sporty cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Challenger isn’t in the top three.

The Camaro was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 3 of the last 4 years. The Challenger has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the Camaro as their 2016 Car of the Year. The Challenger has never been chosen.

The Camaro was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2013. The Challenger has never been an “All Star.”

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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