To many of us, the words "Dodge Charger" evoke images of a brawny coupe with Coke-bottle contours and hideaway headlights. Especially with the recent release of the Dukes of Hazzard movie, it's the 1968-1970 version of Dodge's classic muscle car that first comes to mind. Hard-core partisans have taken issue with DaimlerChrysler's revival of that traditional coupe name for the 2006 Dodge Charger, a four-door sedan. We say, OK, it might have been nice to save the name for a sporty coupe, but it's now on a sedan. Let's move on.
Sharing its rear-drive platform with the Dodge Magnum RT wagon and Chrysler 300C sedan, the Charger RT puts more emphasis on driving dynamics, especially when equipped with the "Road/Track Performance Group" option ($1,600), as our test car was. Standard on the R/T Daytona, this package includes sport seats, enhanced steering, firmer suspension, Michelin performance tires and 10 more horsepower.
The 2006 Dodge Charger sedan certainly looks aggressive. From the front, the reverse-canted grille and angled headlights give it a menacing appearance, like a gangsta rapper's mug on a CD case. No wonder 50 Cent wanted one. True, we see no visual link to past Chargers (well, the cool ones anyway), but the new Charger is attractive in its own right. The styling is both clean and aggressive, its stance is beefy, and those looking for a sedan with serious attitude should like it.
In Da Dodge Thankfully, the cabin won't remind you of an old Charger — you know, flat seats, "Age of Aquarius" ergonomics, a spindly steering wheel. Pony up for that Performance Group package and you'll get sport seats with serious lateral support and all-day comfort. Two-stage seat heaters (also part of that package) warmed our backsides and hearts alike during cold morning commutes. There may be more hard plastic trim on the dash and door panels than we'd prefer, but fit and finish is very good overall.
If you've been inside a Dodge Magnum, the Charger's interior will look familiar. Not a bad thing, as large white-faced gauges and sound ergonomics are hard to fault. A thick-rimmed steering wheel that tilts and telescopes along with power-adjustable pedals allow drivers of all shapes and sizes to get comfortable. A thoughtful feature is the one-touch, three-blink lane-change feature on the turn signals. Nice for those of us who actually signal our intentions.
With a 120-inch wheelbase, backseat room is plentiful. A fold-down center armrest provides additional comfort if only two are riding in back. Should you go nuts at Costco and the 16.2-cubic-foot trunk isn't enough, you can always employ the 60/40-split folding rear seat.
Big Bruiser That's More Than a Cruiser With the RT, Chrysler's now famous 5.7-liter Hemi V8 comes standard. It puts out impressive numbers: 340 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 390 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. That Road/Track Performance Group option bumps horsepower to 350 hp at 5,200 rpm (torque remains the same) by increasing the size of the intake tube running into the throttle body and replacing the three-passage muffler unit with a more straight-through design. "And that's a real 10 hp," says Burke Brown, the chief engineer on the Charger. "The muffler significantly reduces back pressure."
Hooked up to a quick-shifting five-speed manually selectable automatic transmission, the power plant gives the big sedan big performance. We're talking about a car that weighs more than a new Cadillac DeVille, but running up to 60 mph takes just 6.2 seconds, while the quarter is dispatched in 14.3 ticks. That's about the same as our Magnum RT long-termer, which posted 6.3 and 14.4 seconds for the same tests.
One staffer felt that the Charger's tranny slightly outperformed the unit in our Magnum by responding more crisply to throttle inputs, and stepping down more quickly when a downshift was needed during highway merging and passing. He also liked the fact that its Autostick manual select feature is tuned to hold a gear indefinitely like a real manual transmission.
Against EPA estimates of 17 city/25 highway, we only averaged 14.4 mpg during our time with the Charger. Some blame falls on Los Angeles traffic and our own lead feet. More wide-open spaces would have helped us reap the rewards of the Hemi's Multi-Displacement technology. At constant freeway speeds, when power demands are low, this system shuts down four cylinders (in just 40 milliseconds, quicker than an eye blink) to enhance fuel economy. When the need for speed arises, you're running on all cylinders again, without so much as a hiccup.
Dances Pretty Good for a Heavy The Performance Package also adds more aggressive, more fade-resistant brake pads. Hauling the car down from 60 mph ate up only 121 feet of pavement, impressive for a 2-tonner. Equally important, the big four-wheel discs didn't fade at all during our trio of simulated panic stops. ABS is standard and brake pedal feel is linear and firm.
As with the brakes, the Charger RT's handling belies its pudge factor. In addition to allowing juvenile displays of tail-out power, rear-wheel drive contributes to the Charger's decent front-to-rear weight distribution (53/47 percent), which in turn promises more balanced handling.
Carving up a twisty road is more fun than you'd think considering the Charger's bulk. Differences over the regular Charger R/T, besides the tires, are thicker front and rear antiroll bars, which measure 30mm front and 15mm rear, and German-made Nivomat self-leveling shock absorbers that are 20-percent stiffer.
The steering also received a retuning in the form of a unique steering gear with nine grooves instead of six. Brown says passing the hydraulic power steering fluid through the additional grooves made for more precise tuning and allowed his team to achieve the steering feel they wanted without the crude kickback the stiffer suspension and stickier tires would have otherwise caused. It also makes the steering 20-to-25-percent heavier than it is on a regular Charger or any Magnum.
"We started with the Michelin tire, which very much has a performance character to it," says Brown. "Then we tuned the rest of the suspension to go with it."
Quick reactions, nicely weighted and precise steering and effectively quelled body roll are the results. Yes, you can sense the Charger's heft on initial turn-in, but there's no slop in the suspension and steering — it remains composed and the tires don't squeal until you start to get overzealous.
The ride is firm but controlled. Even on Downtown L.A.'s broken-up streets, the Charger absorbed most of the bumps without drama. Sharp impacts can give you a little spank, but overall, the RT provides an agreeable, sporting balance between handling and ride.
At Least They Didn't Call It a Polara Whatever you think of the decision to use the name, there's no denying the 2006 Dodge Charger RT is a lot of car for the money. For a starting price of around $30,000, you get a stylish, powerful, roomy car with a tough attitude and very strong performance. But the Charger doesn't just perform better than its platform siblings, it feels better.
"When we were engineering the Chrysler 300, Dodge Magnum and Dodge Charger, we wanted all three vehicles to have their own character," Brown told us during a phone interview. "We wanted each car to feel different."
Well, we've driven all three, and we like the Charger's character the best. It's the bad boy of the bunch and it wants to party. Hard. Stoke the coals and order the optional Road/Track Performance Group. You won't regret it.
System Score: 9.0
Components: Our Charger was equipped with an optional sound package that included six Boston Acoustics speakers and a subwoofer. The optional package can be ordered with or without an integrated navigation system. It's a 322-watt system that includes MP3 capability, an in-dash six-disc CD changer and a cassette player.
Performance: This stereo is very similar to the system available in the Chrysler 300 and we think it sounds very good. The bass response is wonderful and warm and is not prone to distortion. Low bass tones are kept tight and unmuddled by a subwoofer that offers just the right amount of punch. Highs and midrange sounds are also reproduced very well, and highs, mids and lows are separated nicely. The sound has a depth that surprised us. As we inserted CD after CD looking for a flaw, we found only one: At moderate to high volumes, the highs can occasionally "squeak." It is unlikely that anyone would listen to the stereo as loudly as we did for very long, but it is this weakness that earns the system a 9 rather than a perfect 10.
Because of the sharp, clear and warm sound reproduction, we feel this stereo is well worth the extra $535 you'll pay for the "sound group 2" option. The Charger RT's stereo compares favorably to other optional stereos even when considering those found on more upscale and expensive cars. For a V8-powered rear-wheel-drive sedan, the Dodge Charger RT is a relative bargain and the stellar Boston Acoustics sound system mimics that formula — high performance, reasonable price.
Best Feature: Sound separation and clarity.
Worst Feature: Some highs can "squeak" at higher volumes.
Conclusion: An excellent stereo that will make you want to bust out old favorites as well as modern music selections just to hear how good they can sound. — Brian Moody
Editor in Chief Karl Brauer says: First, to all the "two-doors or death" freaks — get over it! The car has four doors, and that means it will actually sell well enough for the nameplate to live past a single product cycle. Besides, with a new Challenger in the works Dodge will still have a rear-drive, Hemi-powered coupe available in a few short years (but if that one shows up with four doors you have my permission to bury DCX in hate mail).
Next, to the people who say, "It's just a Magnum sedan!" you really should drive one before making such proclamations. Actually, the interior is basically a Magnum sedan, but the driving dynamics are unlike the Magnum or the 300. This is supposed to be the "sporty" kid in the gang, and it lives up to that billing. The styling is unique, too, but I would suggest watching your head when getting in or out of the rear seat, as that C-pillar swings awfully low (my wife bumped her head after buckling the kids in).
Finally, to all of you who want to enjoy the looks, sounds and acceleration of a muscle car, but reality demands a large sedan versus a traditional two-door coupe (à la Mustang/GTO), the new Charger awaits.
Manager of Vehicle Testing Kelly Toepke says: "That's a lotta car for a little girl," my neighbor said when I pulled into the garage. While I might have bristled for half a second at being called a little girl, the old boy was right, the Charger is a lot of car. It's big and fast and makes you feel like you can take on the world. One press of the accelerator pedal and the Hemi springs you forward like a quick, fat cat.
Inside, the Charger is as comfortable as your living room sofa, in both the front and rear. My 5-year-old daughter is no longer easily impressed by her kindergarten chariot, but even she commented on the thickly padded seats.
While I might not revere the muscle car era, or pay nightly homage to reruns of the General Lee, I certainly can appreciate what the modern-day Charger has to offer. It has muscular good looks, a spacious interior and Hemi power, all for under $35,000. Well, even little ol' me can understand the magnetism of that combination.
"I went to the dealer to look at the 300C, but I was blown away by the new Charger. One test-drive was all I needed to know that this is the car for me. I've had Mustangs in the past, but I was not impressed, nor do I think that the new Mustangs provide everything that the new Chargers do. I don't mind if the Charger is a couple of heartbeats slower than the Mustang — I'm willing to give that up for the ability to seat four comfortably & put a week's worth of groceries in the trunk. The best features of the car are the five-speed shiftable automatic, huge trunk, GPS navigation system, stereo, head-turning style, performance and power seats for both driver & passenger. Perhaps a little more luxury in the cabin, but overall Dodge built a winner! The new Charger rocks, plain & simple!" — Kriste W, August 29, 2005
"The Hemi is great. On a trip to Lake George, 2,000 miles round trip I averaged 24 mpg. Not bad for this much power. Fun to drive. Easy to pass pretty much anything. Very comfortable. Pricy at $35,000 but worth it. My employee discount (I'm an electrician at the brake factory) was $500 — for taking the DC loan. My favorite feature is the Hemi V8. It's always the center of attention, everyone who saw it had something nice to say or a Hemi memory of their own. Just a few complaints — the rear spoiler should come with colors other than orange or yellow (Daytona option). Radio controls on the steering wheel, but cruise control is not." — Randy, August 27, 2005.
"This is my daily driver, and I run between 1,000 to 2,000 miles a month. The car drives like a dream, plenty of power in all speeds and handles well. I love the suede seat inserts, radio with the subwoofer is awesome, the nav system is great and the autostick is nearly perfect. I love this beast!" — TB, August 23, 2005
2006 Dodge Charger Overview
The 2006 Dodge Charger is offered in the following submodels: SRT-8, Sedan. Available styles include SRT-8 4dr Sedan (6.1L 8cyl 5A), RT 4dr Sedan (5.7L 8cyl 5A), and SE 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A). Charger models are available with a 6.1 l-liter gas engine or a 5.7 l-liter gas engine or a 3.5 l-liter gas engine, with output up to 425 hp, depending on engine type. The 2006 Charger comes with rear wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 5-speed shiftable automatic. The 2006 Charger comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. powertrain warranty.
What's a good price on a used 2006 Dodge Charger?
Save up to $300 on one of 63 used 2006 Dodge Chargers for sale at dealerships within 25 miles of Ashburn, Virginia with prices as low as $3993 as of Nov 24, 2017, based on data from 18 dealers and 53 consumer-driven dealer ratings ranging from 4 to 5 out of 5 stars.
Price comparisons for used 2006 Dodge Charger trim styles:
The 2006 Dodge Charger RT is priced around $9960 with average odometer reading of 117493 miles.
The 2006 Dodge Charger SE is priced around $5592 with average odometer reading of 94431 miles.
The 2006 Dodge Charger SRT-8 is priced around $13983 with average odometer reading of 90187 miles.
Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, Virginia. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.
Is the 2006 Dodge Charger a good car? Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2006 Dodge Charger and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2006 Charger featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
Our Review Process All of our reviews are written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
How do people like the 2006 Dodge Charger? Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2006 Dodge Charger and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2006 Charger 4.6 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2006 Charger.
Review This car drives great and I have the SXT trim level. The 3.5 engine is plenty of power for most people and still have fun. The tie rods wore out a little early at 45,000 miles. All in all I love this car!
2006 Dodge Charger inventory listings Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2006 Dodge Charger for sale near Ashburn VA. There are currently 454 new and 1030 used and CPO 2006 Chargers listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as 2500 and mileage as low as 0. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2006 Dodge Charger. Then select Edmunds special offers, perks, deals, and incentives to contact the dealer of your choice and save up to 300 on a new, used, or CPO 2006 Charger available from one of 2797 dealerships in your area.
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Exterior Colors: Pitch Black, Pitch Black Clear Coat, Granite Crystal Metallic Clear Coat, Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, White Knuckle Clear Coat, Destroyer Grey Clear Coat, Granite Pearl Coat, Octane Red Pearl Coat, Maximum Steel Metallic Clear Coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat, Torred, Go Mango, Yellow Jacket Clear Coat, Billet Clear Coat, Torred Clear Coat, Bright White Clearcoat, Redline 3 Pearlcoat, Tungsten Metallic Clearcoat, Brilliant Black Crystal Pearlcoat, Ivory Tri-Coat Pearl, Bright Silver Metallic Clearcoat, Inferno Red Crystal Pearlcoat, B5 Blue Pearl Coat, Phantom Black Tri-Coat Pearl, Redline Red Tri-Coat Pearl, Blackberry Pearlcoat, Dark Titanium Metallic Clearcoat, Redline 3 Pearl Coat, Steel Blue Metallic Clearcoat, Billet Metallic Clearcoat, Magnesium Pearlcoat, TorRed, Green Go Clear Coat, Marine Blue Pearlcoat, Midnight Blue Pearlcoat, Plum Crazy Pearl Coat, Top Banana, Deep Water Blue Pearlcoat, Ivory Pearl Coat, Stone White Clearcoat, Blue Streak Pearlcoat, HEMI Orange Pearlcoat, Header Orange Clear Coat, Light Sandstone Metallic Clearcoat, Silver Steel Metallic Clearcoat, Detonator Yellow Clearcoat, High Octane Red Pearl Coat, Contusion Blue Pearl Coat, Cool Vanilla Clearcoat, Copperhead Pearl Coat, Daytona Blue Pearl Coat, Go Mango!, Plum Crazy Pearlcoat, Toxic Orange Pearlcoat, Unreleased Paint
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Popular Features: Aux Audio Inputs, USB Inputs, Automatic Emergency Braking, Post-collision safety system, Remote Start, Keyless Entry/Start, Back-up camera, Parking sensors, Apple Carplay/Android Auto, Upgraded Headlights, Blind Spot Monitoring, Mobile Internet, Cooled Seats, AWD/4WD, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, Pre-collision safety system, Rear Bench Seats, Stability Control, Power Driver Seat, Fold Flat Rear Seats, Upgraded Stereo, Heated seats, Sunroof/Moonroof, Tire Pressure Warning, Auto Climate Control, Leather Seats, Multi-Zone Climate Control, Alarm, Audio and cruise controls on steering wheel, Trip Computer, Navigation, Bluetooth, Electronic Folding Mirrors, Upgraded Engine