Dodge Challenger vs. Ford Mustang

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Automotive Editor

Jerimy’s had a love/hate relationship with cars since he procured his first vehicle – a 1981 baby blue Ford Fairmont.  It had an oil leak.  He promptly blew the engine.  After a lengthy non-auto related career he established and ran a service repairing interior blemishes in cars and trucks for automobile dealers.  He learned firsthand from dealers about a wide variety of vehicles ranging from high-end luxury cars to ten-year old gas guzzlers – and everything in between.  Eventually he moved on to writing.  Now he works as a writer and editor during the day and moonlights as a freelance writer at night – he's hoping not to blow any more cars up.

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, Automotive Editor - January 2, 2015

Fifty years ago, the Ford Mustang defined what would end up becoming the muscle car category and a lasting characteristic of American cars. But the big story this year has been about how Ford went and reinvented the 2015 Mustang into something with contemporary underpinnings and wrapped in a classic body shape.

See a side-by-side comparison of the Challenger & Mustang >>

Ford, however, isn't the only game in town. So how does it stand-up against other reincarnated muscle cars like the Dodge Challenger?

What the Ford Mustang Gets Right

Handling, for the first time. Finally getting fully independent suspension makes the 2015 Mustang a sports car, and not just a straight-line cruiser. It's also helped out by strong engines, with the returning 5.0-liter V8 and a brand-new 2.3-liter Ecoboost turbocharged four-cylinder, pumping out 310 horsepower (let's forget the fleet-special V6 engine). All of this contributes to an athletic feel the Mustang, and muscle cars, have never been known for. But it also makes it a truly well-rounded sports coupe.

What the Dodge Challenger Gets Right

The Challenger, also revised for 2015, is much more in the mold of a classic American coupe. It's big, which means it has an almost usable rear seat that the Ford lacks. It also adds some everyday comfort. And for those unenthused by the turbo four noises from the Mustang, the Challenger offers three V8s and one powerful V6 (most with the choice of a six-speed manual or excellent eight-speed automatic) – right up to the ferocious 707-horsepower Hellcat. The Dodge makes no apologies for its American-ness.

Which Performs Better?

In short, the Dodge trades comfort and space for overall performance. So if a grand tourer with a big V8 is what you're looking for, look no further than the Challenger. But the Mustang takes that formula and adds handling to the equation. And with upgraded brakes and suspension tuning, a Mustang can be a rival to something like a BMW 4-Series coupe. Its responses and controls are sharper than the Dodge's, too.

Our Verdict: Ford Mustang

Both of these cars have style and nostalgia, but the Mustang adds more to make it a complete package. The Challenger wraps itself in muscle car history. The Mustang introduces those memories to the 21st century.

Take a closer look at the Dodge Challenger >>

Take a closer look at the Ford Mustang >>

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, Automotive Editor

Jerimy’s had a love/hate relationship with cars since he procured his first vehicle – a 1981 baby blue Ford Fairmont.  It had an oil leak.  He promptly blew the engine.  After a lengthy non-auto related career he established and ran a service repairing interior blemishes in cars and trucks for automobile dealers.  He learned firsthand from dealers about a wide variety of vehicles ranging from high-end luxury cars to ten-year old gas guzzlers – and everything in between.  Eventually he moved on to writing.  Now he works as a writer and editor during the day and moonlights as a freelance writer at night – he's hoping not to blow any more cars up.

Follow On: Google+ | Website