Supercars On A $50,000 Budget: The Hellcat Has Become The Hellkitten


Dodge's 707 hp monster should start to be rather affordable.

Dodge shocked the world when it revealed the 707 horsepower Hellcat twins, and now the company plans to up the ante with a more powerful car called the Demon. With the Hellcat's horsepower supremacy slated to end, we thought we would take a look at the used market for this incredible muscle car. We recently featured the Chevy Camaro Z/28 on our "$50,000 Supercar" series, and we noted that despite being incredibly fast and incredibly cool, the Z/28 could now be purchased for far less than when it was new, just like the Hellcat.

Our searched turned up more than a dozen Challenger Hellcats that are below, or just above the $50,000 price mark. We found a nice assortment of manual and automatic models, so there is a nice selection of cars in this budget. Even at its MSRP price of $62,495, the Hellcat is an amazing value compared to far more expensive German cars with far less power. Now, at its used price, the Hellcat could possibly be the best value car on the market today. To date, the Hellcat is the most powerful car that we have featured under $50,000, beating out a Gemballa-tuned 996 911 Turbo and a V12 Mercedes S65 AMG by around 100 hp. But the Hellcat may have even further to fall before the depreciation stops.

When the Hellcat was first arriving at dealerships, there were insane markups that brought prices up to over $100,000 in some cases. This is the same phenomenon that we have also seen with models like the Shelby GT350, Corvette Z06, and BMW M4 GTS when they first starting arriving at dealerships. Now, that the initial hype of the car is over, we can say that we were absolutely right about the Hellcat's future collectibility. We were never convinced that the Hellcat would make a good investment, given that Dodge seemingly produced a very high number of over 7,000 with over 1,000 more Charger Hellcats.

Even the Charger Hellcat, which is rarer, can still be purchased in the mid-$50,000 range. It may not be under $50,000, but we predict that these two models will be available for less in a few years. Calculating a depreciating curve for a car is pretty complex business, but to keep it simply we will look at $62,495 base price in 2015 and base our calculations off of the roughly $13,000 that the least expensive examples have lost in the past two years. Even if the car stays at a flat depreciation curve, the cars should be worth around $37,000 in two years time. That means you will be able to get a four-year-old Hellcat for less than the price of a new BMW 328i.

At $37,000, the Challenger Hellcat would offer horsepower-per-dollar of $52 per hp. That is even more impressive than the car's already fantastic value of $88 per hp. A Lamborghini Aventador, which isn't as powerful as the Hellcat, has a horsepower-per-dollar figure of $578 per hp. Comparing the Hellcat to Lamborghini may sound silly, but it still proves that as the years go on, the Hellcat will start to become even cheaper and a better value. The Hellcat is turning into a Hellkitty on the used market, and this is fantastic news for anyone who doesn't have over $60,000 to spend on a new one.


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