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Josh Rosenberg By Josh Rosenberg
Updated Jan. 31, 2024

Older, 10+ Year-Old Dodge Charger Review, Reliability, Possible Maintenance Problems, Overall Pros And Cons

Related: How To Get The Lowest Price On A "Brand New" Car

In today's very high-priced used car market, many shoppers are now looking for "older" models that have aged well as a way to save significant dollars.

2007 Dodge Charger

The question then becomes, "Is the Dodge Charger one of those models? Well, the answer to this all comes down to its track record for reliability and longevity.

Well, the reliability of older Chargers has generally been mixed, with some owners reporting positive experiences and praising the performance and styling, while others have encountered issues with various components.

So, here ...

- We'll do an overview of the sixth and seventh generation Chargers, produced from 2006 - 2023, but we're really focusing on those roughly 10 or more years-old.

- Then we'll list possible mechanical issues that have been reported by owners of these older Chargers so they can be checked before buying one today.

- And then we'll summarize the overall pros and cons of an older Dodge Charger worth consideration by potential buyers.

But first, and very importantly ...

Things To Do When Considering An "Older" Vehicle

Locate Lower Mileage Vehicles: They are certainly out there to be found with careful and patient shopping. Be willing to drive a distance if you have to.

Vehicle History and Maintenance: Ask for the vehicle history report (CarFax or AutoCheck) as well as documented maintenance and repair records. If not provided by the Dealer or private seller, it's usually best to move on.

Pre-Purchase Inspection: Have the vehicle independently inspected before making a final decision. This usually will cost in the $150-$200 range but is well worth it given the potentially thousands in savings over the long term.

Seventh Generation Dodge Charger (2011 - 2023)

2011 Dodge Charger

Already noted for its powerful V8 engine, capable handling, roomy cabin and all-wheel drive availability, the revised 2011 Charger upped the ante with a refreshed design, a new and more robust V6 engine, an upgraded suspension tuning, better interior materials quality, electric-assist power steering, additional standard features and a new electronic interface.

Trims, Standard Features And Options:

This version initially came in two trimls: SE and R/T. The SE is rear-wheel-drive only, while the R/T is available with either rear-wheel or all-wheel drive.

Standard features on the already decently-equipped entry-level SE include a V6 engine, full power accessories, 17-inch alloy wheels, a power driver seat, keyless entry/ignition, cruise control, air-conditioning, remote engine start, and a 6-speaker audio system with a CD player, a 4.3-inch touchscreen interface, an iPod interface and an auxiliary audio jack.

Moving up to the R/T adds a V8 engine, 18-inch alloy wheels (19 on AWD models), a performance-tuned suspension, heated front seats, a power-adjustable front passenger seat, Bluetooth, dual-zone climate control, foglights, xenon headlights, a rear spoiler on RWD models, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and an Alpine audio system with an 8.4-inch touchscreen display with voice controls.

2011 Dodge Charger R/T rear view

You can also find models with some of the myriad of available options. Some of the more popular include navigation, leather upholstery, a sunroof, a rear back-up camera, power-adjustable pedals, a blind-spot warning system, adaptive cruise control with a front collision warning system, a heated steering wheel, a 9-speaker Alpine surround-sound system, various 18-, 19- and 20-inch wheels, and a Super Track Pack that adds high-performance brakes, tires and suspension components.

Engines, Powertrain And Gas Mileage:

Powering the Charger SE is an all-new Pentastar 3.6-liter V6 engine that's good for a healthy 292 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. Under the hood of the R/T is a 5.7-liter HEMI V8 that pumps out a prodigous 370 horsepower and 395 pound-feet. Both are paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode, while all-wheel drive is available for the R/T.

The EPA-estimated gas mileage for a V6-equipped Charger stands at 18 mpg city and 27 on the highway. The fuel economy rating for a V8-powered R/T with RWD comes in at 16 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, while the AWD R/T is rated at 15 and 23, respectively.

2011 Dodge Charger R/T interior

Beginning in 2015, the interiors were upgraded again to include new materials and styling, while the AWD version was dropped.

In 2019, revisions included a new GT performance trim as well as the all-wheel drive SXT model. There were also performance upgrades for the SRT Hellcat and Scat Pack trims.

Also in 2019, the Charger's exterior was updated depending on the trim level. While the GT and R/T trims got new chassis tuning, a new rear deck spoiler, and new aerodynamic trim pieces, the SRT Hellcat and Scat Pack were recipients of a new grille with air inlets.

2011 - 2023 Dodge Charger Possible Mechanical Problems

While not widespread, the following issues have been reported by some owners and should therefore be checked in a pre-purchase inspection:

Transmission Issues: Some owners have reported transmission problems, such as rough shifting or failure to shift properly.

Electrical Problems: Electrical issues have been reported, ranging from problems with the infotainment system to malfunctions in various electronic components. These can include issues with sensors, lighting, or the car's computer system.

Brake System Concerns: Some owners have reported problems with the braking system, including issues with brake pads and rotors.

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Suspension Components: Suspension components may experience wear over time, leading to issues such as uneven tire wear, vibrations, or a less comfortable ride. Bushings, struts, and other suspension parts may require attention.

Engine Performance: While the engines in the Charger are generally durable, some owners have reported issues related to engine performance, including misfires, rough idling, or stalling.

Cooling System Problems: Reports of cooling system problems, including radiator issues and coolant leaks, have been experienced by some Charger owners.

Sixth Generation Dodge Charger (2006 - 2010)

2008 Dodge Charger R/T

The "new" Charger was reborn with the 2006 model ... not so much as the pure "muscle car" of the 1960's, but more of an affordable performance car with plenty of amenities.

Based on the same Mercedes platform as the Chrysler 300, this Charger is slightly larger than the average midsize four-door sedan. However, it's designed with a more aggressive looking front facsia than the 300 and its rear roof line slopes downward for a coupe-like appearance.

These Chargers can be found in four trim levels: the base SE, the very well equipped SXT, the more performance oriented RT and the powerpacked SRT8.

Even the base model comes fairly well equipped and sports a 250 horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 engine. The R/T ramps that up to a 5.6-liter HEMI V8, good for 340 hp.

The SRT-8, a product of Chrysler's Street and Racing Technology Division, is the fastest of these Charger models and is equipped with a 6.1-liter Hemi capable of producing 425 horsepower. In addition to its powerful engine, this SRT8 comes with a specially designed 5-speed automatic transmission, larger brakes and a stiffer suspension.

All of these Chargers except the SRT8, which is rear-wheel drive only, can be found in either rear-wheel or all-wheel drive forms ... and all are equipped with a 5-speed automatic transmission.

Important considerations for older Dodge Charger shoppers:

During the first two years the Charger's interior was of a somewhat lesser quality. This was significantly improved for the 2008 model year.

In addition, the Charger SXT was introduced for 2008. And for the 2009 model year, the RT got a power boost from 340 to 368 horsepower. A Super Bee package for the SRT8 was also made available for the first time.

2009 Dodge Charger

While there are some variations in features depending on the model year, here is generally how these Charger models you may be considering are equipped:

Standard features on the Charger SE model include full power accessories, air conditioning, cloth seats, 17 inch steel wheels, a tilt/telescoping steering column and a CD/MP3 stereo system.

The Charger SXT comes with the more powerful V6 engine, a power driver seat, alloy wheels, power-adjustable pedals, a 60/40-split rear seat and a Boston Acoustics sound system.

Some of these Charger SXT models can also be found with optional features such as Bluetooth, a sunroof, MyGIG infotainment with or without navigation, automatic headlamps and a rear DVD/Backseat TV entertainment system.

In addition, some used SXT's can be found with the Popular Equipment Package which added features such as heated leather-trimmed front seats, machined aluminum wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, an upgraded audio system and a power passenger seat.

The Charger R/T is equipped very much like the SXT, but adds a V8 engine plus dual exhaust, heated folding mirrors and an enhanced Auto Stick transmission. Charger R/T models can also be found with options such as xenon headlamps as well as the same major options as the SXT.

R/T-specific optional packages include the Popular Equipment Package which features 18 inch chromed alloy wheels (on the RWD only), remote start, an upgraded surround-sound audio system, interior LED-illuminated accents and an Electronics Display Package.

Some R/T's can also be found with the Daytona Edition or Road/Track Performance packages which include sport-tuned suspension and steering, 20 inch chrome wheels with high-performance tires, unique badging, heated front seats with suede trim, and a special exhaust system that boosts horsepower by 10 on the rear-wheel drive models.

The high-performance-oriented Charger SRT8 comes with the larger Hemi V8 plus a specially calibrated and lowered suspension, more powerful brakes, 20 inch aluminum wheels, sport seats, its own instrument cluster and a reconfigurable display.

These older SRT8's can also be found with optional navigation, rear entertainment, and a Kicker premium audio system. Some can also be found with the unique graphics and special blue exterior paint of the Super Bee Special Edition package.

2006 - 2010 Dodge Charger Possible Mechanical Problems

This Charger has had a number of mechanical issues that were reported by some owners. It's important to note that individual experiences varied, and not all vehicles encountered these problems. Even so, they should still be included in an inspection before buying.

Transmission Issues: Some owners reported problems with the automatic transmission, including issues with shifting, hesitation, or rough transitions between gears.

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Electrical System Problems: There were occasional reports of electrical issues, such as problems with the power windows, door locks, and other electrical components.

Suspension and Steering Concerns: Owners mentioned problems with the suspension system, including issues with shocks, struts, or other components. Some also reported problems with the power steering system.

Brake System Issues: Some owners reported problems with the brake system, including premature wear of brake pads and rotors.

Engine Performance Problems: There were occasional reports of engine-related issues, including problems with misfires, rough idling, or stalling.

Cooling System Concerns: Some owners experienced problems with the cooling system, such as radiator issues and coolant leaks.

Quality of Interior Materials: While not strictly a mechanical problem, some owners mentioned concerns about the quality of interior materials, including trim pieces and interior components showing premature wear.

Overall Older Dodge Charger Pros And Cons

Older Charger Pros

Affordability: Obviously, older Dodge Chargers are more affordable upfront compared to newer models, allowing you to save money on the initial purchase. However, this savings has to be weighed against the increased risk of higher maintenance costs going forward.

Powerful Engines: Older Chargers offer a range of powerful engine options, providing ample performance for those seeking a sporty driving experience.

Spacious Interior: The Charger is known for its spacious cabin, offering plenty of room for both front and rear passengers. This makes it a comfortable option for long drives or family trips.

Available All-Wheel Drive (AWD): There are some Chargers with AWD, providing better traction and stability in various driving conditions, particularly in regions with inclement weather.

Bold Styling: The Charger features a bold and aggressive exterior design that appeals to those who appreciate a more muscular and distinctive look in a sedan.

Older Charger Cons

Potential Reliability Issues: Older Chargers may have accumulated wear and tear, leading to potential reliability issues and require more frequent maintenance which may offset some or all of the initial purchase price savings.

Outdated Technology: Older models may lack the latest in-car technology, infotainment systems, and safety features compared to more recent vehicles.

Fuel Efficiency: Generally, high-performance engines in the Charger may result in lower fuel efficiency compared to some other sedans in its class. This is a common trade-off for powerful performance.

Ride Comfort: Some drivers and passengers may find the ride to be on the firmer side, especially in the performance-oriented trims.

Limited Cargo Space: While the Charger has a spacious interior, the trunk space is smaller than some competitors in the this segment.

Handling Dynamics: While the Charger has a sporty character, some drivers and reviewers noted that its handling dynamics were not as sharp or responsive as those of some competing sports sedans.

Also, Always Know The Value Of Your Trade-In!

Whether you are trading or selling on your own, it's just a good idea ... even whether you are in the market or not at the moment. You can then use this important information for a number of purposes ... to negotiate with a dealer, or to know how to price your car in the retail market, or simply to know the value of one of your assets, which is always a good idea.

Getting trade-in values online tend to vary a lot from site to site. But I've found the one at Edmunds Trade-In Quotes is particularly comprehensive and accurate. It's free, it's quick and there's no contact by any third parties. I think what helps its accuracy is the inputs will include either your plate# or VIN#. They really focus in on the specific vehicle.

Lastly, Suggestions For Getting A Low Charger Price

First of all, here's a Lowest Price Used Car Buying Guide that details a very effective method.

Here's another method that identifies Price-Distressed Cars Right On Dealer Lots. These are vehicles they are so desperate to unload they would welcome your wholesale offer.

In addition, you can also try the Public Car Auctions in your own geographic area. This article reviews what to expect at open-to-the-public car auctions and how to locate them.

And for those of you who might be interested in a "brand new" vehicle if the price was really good, here's info on The Best Way To Buy A New Car. This works just phenomenally well.

And checkout our Facebook page for more tips, car news and fun.

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