He almost bought a Challenger: part 1

Rather than deal with this repair, I was tempted (and quite close actually) to buying a 2010 / 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT-8 (if you’re going to buy a muscle car, get the top dog). However, sanity got the better of me, and I realized that a 2 grand in parts was a better deal than trading it in for next to nothing and forking out 45 grand to Ma Mopar for a vehicle that would likely be horrendous in winter.

So what happened? Well, the video explains it pretty well, but the short version is this… after this became my daily driver a few years ago, I actually started to notice that ‘base model’ trucks are named that for a reason; the back end was quite loose, among other things. Fixing the problem created a new one – the front end was now lower than the back by a substantial margin, creating a heck of a rake. Lifting the front 2 1/2 inches with a longer coil spring resulted in increased stress on the front suspension due to the geometry change. It’s actually physically limited due to travel constraints of the upper control arm.

Result? — 3 or 4 years later, both upper control arms are bent, a coil spring is cracked, and a gentle hum indicates the wheel bearings may not be surviving.

The fix? — rip is all out, rebuild the stock suspension in stock form, and add a 3 1/2 inch spindle (knuckle) lift to the front. This may necessitate a 1 inch block in back, but we’ll get to that if necessary in the end.

Here’s the ‘before’ video…


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