Dodge in November announced plans for a performance parts range falling under the Direct Connection program, an on-again, off-again parts program first introduced by Chrysler in 1974 to offer factory upgrades for Chrysler, Dodge and Plymouth cars.
Last week we finally got an idea of what parts Dodge fans can look forward to from the modern Direct Connection program. As expected, there are parts for the driveline, powertrain and suspension, including various stages from mild to wild.
The first batch of parts announced by Dodge are designed for various Challenger models dating back to the 2015 model year. In total, there are 14 kits grouping various parts for the Challenger, and 13 kits for the Challenger Mopar Drag Pak dragstrip special.
The most powerful of these kits is a Stage II kit for the Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye. It lifts output from the car's 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 to 885 hp and 787 lb-ft of torque, up from the stock 807 hp and 717 lb-ft.
Key mods include a digital controller that plugs into the OBD-II port and can be used to adjust performance levels via a touchscreen display. There's also a 3.17-inch engine pulley borrowed from the even more powerful Hellephant supercharged V-8.
Speaking of the Hellephant, the 1,000-hp crate engine is also available via the Direct Connection program, along with the Hellcat Redeye V-8, the regular 717-hp Hellcat V-8, the 485-hp 392 Hemi V-8 and the 383-hp 345 Hemi V-8.
Hellephant crate engine
For regulars at the dragstrip, there's a complete body-in-white that can be used to build a custom drag racer. There are also engines approved for NHRA Factory Stock competition, and multiple safety upgrades including a seat kit and head restraint kit. There are also graphics packages available to make a vehicle stand out.
All of the available parts are detailed in a catalog that can be downloaded from the Dodge website (a print version will be available for purchase from next spring). It includes all the pricing information as well as example builds to suit multiple budgets.
Crucially, parts falling under the Direct Connection program don't void any emissions regulations. They're also warranty friendly when installed by an approved dealership, known as a Dodge Power Broker. The Dodge Power Brokers dealer network will officially open for business next spring. Locations will be made available on the Dodge website at that time.