2007 Dodge Charger SRT8: Help! My Millennial Parents Bought a Charger
by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on November 3, 2015
A few weeks ago, Time magazine ran a cover story titled "Help! My Parents Are Millennials" that detailed changing parenting styles as the millennial generation starts having children. Oddly, Time overlooked reporting on our super awesome 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 Millennial Used Car project. But nonetheless I've got a few observations on how well our Charger fares for kid duty.
For testing purposes, I broke out my Britax Marathon reversible child safety seat. I don't use this anymore for my kids, but it works well as a stand-in. The first aspect about our Charger SRT8 that I discovered is that the thickly contoured cushioning for the outboard rear seats isn't ideal for big safety seats. Specifically, it doesn't give you a nice, flat base to secure the seat.
I used a folded-up towel to help level things out, but there was still some undesirable squishing of the cushion bolsters going on once I strapped down the seat. As for the lower LATCH anchors, I could get them connected, but the inboard anchor was buried pretty deep and it took some doing to connect the buckle.
Problem number two: Our Charger's rear head restraints are fixed. Since you can't remove them, you can't get a tight fit against the seatback if you're using a forward-facing seat. It also makes it harder to secure the top LATCH anchor.
I should note, though, that installing just one safety seat in the center seat position is easier because of the flat (albeit elevated) cushion. The lack of head restraint in the center position is also advantageous. If you only have one seat to install, this could be the way to go.
In better news, our Charger SRT8's ample rear legroom is an advantage, providing a suitable amount of clearance for safety seats in a rear-facing position. The driver or front passenger shouldn't need to adjust their seat positions much, if at all, to accommodate their newest family addition in back.
Overall, I'd wager that the typical midsize family sedan would be more accommodating for child safety seats than our Charger. But as we noted on the outset, we wanted to get something fun to drive. Can you have a car that will do wicked burnouts with your kids strapped in back? Yes you can, Millennial Parents.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor