Abusing 707 hp on public roads can be lethal, and pretty stupid.
The Dodge Challenger Hellcat is an impressive machine, producing 707 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque from its supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI V8. It should go without saying that restraint should be exercised when driving it outside the controlled confines of a race track. According to ABC 11 news, 22-year-old William Jefferson showed very little restraint this July when he instead exercised his right foot until he had his Hellcat doing 198 mph on US-1 in Wake County, North Carolina. His reckless driving was recorded on an in-car camera as well as by his friends as he raced along the highway closely followed by a motorbike.
Aside from the top end run which was just 1mph shy of the manufacturers own claim, Jefferson also filmed himself doing over 100 mph in a 40-mph zone as well as doing donuts in his car. These stunts may have been carried out under the cover of darkness, but it is never a good idea to be this reckless on public roads. Of course, posting it all on YouTube wasn’t very smart either and the footage was inevitably seen by someone who reported it to the cops who then sought Jefferson out and arrested him.
Aside from a few traffic violations, Jefferson had a clean record up until this ridiculous event. He has now been charged with street racing and reckless driving. Let’s hope that exposing this sort of flagrant disregard for the safety of other road users will make people think twice before they treat the public highways as their own personal race track.
At those speeds even the world’s best driver cannot predict what other people will do, especially since you are covering over 290 feet every second. Why no link to the video? Because the last thing we want to do is promote this kind of dangerous behavior.