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Dodge Charger vs. Chevrolet Impala

worrworr Member Posts: 45
edited June 2014 in Chevrolet
I haven't purchased yet, but it is coming down to these two cars. I've done several test drives in both cars including alternate versions of the same--LTZ, LS as well as the SXT in the Dodge.

I have a couple criteria:

1) Leg room

I'm 6' 4" and got into this game looking for leg room and good power as well as comfort. Overall I'd say the Charge, though the Impala is listed as a "full size", has more room. Leg room is practically the same, but there is more head room, shoulder room, etc. Also the back seat is roomier in the Charger for the family.

So the Charger gets the nod here.

2) Pricing

Chargers were selling for MSRP when they fist came out, but now they are coming down in price. My first offer was $600 over invoice and I would expect to get lower.

However, the Impala is selling right now below invoice and is priced lower from the start with more options. I seems the Charger has a lot of add ons that jack the MSRP. My comparison is the Impala SS with leather, block heater, polished wheels, Bose Sound, convenience package, $29995 MSRP going for $27003 with an additional 1,000 rebate.

Charger R/T with R/T performance package, convince group, Bose Sound, $33,095 MSRP. Invoice is $31,177 with the option of another 1,000 rebate if you take their financing which is higher than I could get.

Is there 3,000 in value difference here?

Impala SS might do OK with value because they aren't fleet cars, buy the regular Impala will suffer for this. Charger will be rarer. But the Charger has more power and rear wheel drive is attractive even up in the North lands.

3) Handling

The Impala is smoother...much smoother than the Charger. However you can feel the weight up front compared to the equal weight distribution in the Charger. So even though it is rear wheel drive it does well in the snow and ice. Torque steer is an issue in the SS.

4) Interior

Impala is superior here. Charger is bone crusher hard on the arm rests, and looks cheap in comparison. Radio might be better in the Charger, but both are exceptional.

5) Mileage

Charger R/T owners are saying they are getting what is advertised even with limited break in. Impala SS owners are reporting much less than the EPA numbers.


  • qbrozenqbrozen Member Posts: 29,083
    My choice would be simple. There is no way I'd be happy with a FWD V8. Such a vehicle just shouldn't exist, IMHO.

    ‘21 Camaro LT1, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '13 Fiat 500c, '14 Town&Country Limited. 54-car history and counting!

  • xtecxtec Member Posts: 354
    I think it's a know brainer which car to get.A Hemi rear wheel drive,std.anti-lock brakes,electronic stability system and traction control.Mercedes design chassis, 5speed
    Mercedes design tranmission.As a owner of a SXT Charger I think this is a great car.Mine has the power pedals so you could be 5ft to 6.5ft no problem driving.The ride and transmission is smooth as anything iv'e driven.The looks are I think great,I get a lot of looks with this car.It does catch your eye.Good luck with your choice.
  • worrworr Member Posts: 45
    Simple is the word. The Cadilac doesn't seem worse for the where with a FWD V8 however.

    Drove the SS again is nose heavy. Milage was about 17+ in town and 20 on the highweay doing 75 MPH. Very odd, no? I was getting 23 in the Charger R/T on the highway.
  • worrworr Member Posts: 45

    Looks are great, but I wasn't looking to make a statement either with my new car purchase....though I used to own a '69 GTO. My 13 year old daughter who went ont he test drive even asked the salesperson: "Is this what would be classified as a Muscle Car?" I hadn'teven thought of it til then...but it is too brawny to be a sports car.

    The Impala rides smoother than the Charger. But i do notice the weight balance right away...and even though I live in Northern Planes which are snow covered all winter, I don't think the rear wheel drive is a detract. I would not use the traction control in the FWD Impala. It just hits the break on the spinning wheel while I'm hitting the gas. Seems counter productive. I think the Posi Traction in the Charger would do better...though you might want to throw some weight in the trunk still.

    ABS brakes are standard in the Impala too, but the Charger brakes much better.

    Price is the main problem right now. Impala SS loaded is still 2-3K below the Charger and that without the discounts and rebates the Impala is reciving. The Charger is still in its first year of production, so there are few deals. However, I'm guessing the first people who bought a Charger, especially with a Hemi, paid MSRP out the door. My first offer was $600 over invoice right over the internet.

    What did you pay for yours?

    I want the Impala to work out...but the Charger seems like the better value. It may even hold its value better than the Impala. But what is going on with Charger fleet sales? Are they in the rentals as wella s police cars?
  • jrnyacejrnyace Member Posts: 21
    My advice to you is to read the Motor Trend Car of The Year issue that is currently out. These guys drive cars all day and night and they purposely placed the Charger and Impala next to each other in the magazine. The Charger may have been "car of the year" if not for the 300C winning last year. They share the same platform. This is the sportier version of the 300C. If you want better handling get a 300C. It's the same car!
  • worrworr Member Posts: 45
    I couldn't find that article.

    This year's car of the year is the Honda Civic.
  • jrnyacejrnyace Member Posts: 21
    Yes-I understand that the Civic won this year-but the Charger was one the 20 cars in the running and Motor Trend placed the Charger and Impala on opposite pages to make a slight comparison. If the 300C hadn't come out last year the Charger most likely would have beaten the Civic. The writers looked at the Charger as a rehashed 300C -as it kinda is-and concluded that was too much like the 300C of last year.
  • jmiles82jmiles82 Member Posts: 1
    Here is my input on this issue. I currently own a '06 Charger SRT8 and have owned TWO Impala SSes (1995 models). I have ZERO confidence in Chevrolet when it comes to quality control. Both Impala SSes had serious quality control issues from the factory (mismatched doors - driver's door= Impala SS/passenger door=Caprice. Door seams so far misaligned that the dealer claimed that they could not be straightened.) Overall quality of workmanship was VERY poor. Chevrolet quality control is virtually non-existent. The Dodge, on the other hand has build quality at least on a par with Japanese imports and in my opinion has the best domestic auto manufacturer's quality control. I would not hesitate to strongly recommend the Dodge over the Chevrolet any time.
  • garsarnogarsarno Member Posts: 72
    Not an exact comparison, but I own a 2007 Impala SS, now having 10,700 miles with no problems at all, no return to the dealer for any adjustments. Drove a 2007 Charger SXT rental with 1,200 miles on it for a few days. The Charger is a larger car but did not seem as put together as my SS. The interior reminded me of our '07 Grand Cherokee, Tupperware type plastic trim but OK. While not a Hemi, the Charger did have some stumble issues upon initial acceleration. Not a bad car but I am glad I got the Impala SS instead. GM has done a nice job for 2006+ with these cars.
  • xtecxtec Member Posts: 354
    I have a '06 Charger SXT,and mine has never stumbled for me.Your talking about a rental.I'm sure people are putting in the cheapest gas they can find.It calls for mid-grade and I'm sure thats what caused the stumble.As far as Quality,This is the best Chrysler product I ever owned,and would compare it to anything in its class.It also has a higher resale value then Impala.I agree with jmiles82 on this.
  • garsarnogarsarno Member Posts: 72
    With 1200 miles, can't be too beat up. It was a V6 and I have a 2007 Hemi Grabd Cherokee. No stumble there. I just liked the Impala better. Looked at Hemi 300 and Charger when searching for the right business car (traveling salesman).
  • quietproquietpro Member Posts: 702
    I shopped the Chrysler 300, Charger R/T, and Impala SS and went with the SS. While I preferred the RWD of the Chrysler products, I didn't like the interiors of the cars and the lack of features. As for quality control, I have had no problems with my '06 other than a tire pressure sensor and remote keyless entry antenna needing replaced. I consider those minor glitches that don't affect the overall reliability of the vehicle and were replaced under warranty.
  • smithedsmithed Member Posts: 444

    I'm glad to hear you like the SS. It's great to have a small block back in the biggest Chevy sedan, even with FWD. I really have no problem with FWD V8.

    What features are there that the Mopars didn't have? I'd like to know since I have a 300C and can't imagine what features are missing. Of course, the C is more expensive than the R/T and I went for most of the options (except navigation: I like maps :)

    I like the interior of my C by the way. You know, different strokes.

    I would probably be happy with the SS, but it didn't exist when I was shopping in July 2005.

    It's good to see these domestics going back to where they belong: V8s.

    Enjoy the SS. :shades:
  • garsarnogarsarno Member Posts: 72
    We have a 2007 Hemi Grand Cherokee too. Like the Hemi but the SS is good for me in NE PA. I like the 300 interior too but it is a Chrysler versus Dodge and it is more upscale than the Charger. The Navigation system in the Jeep seems to be more generic, in the SS, I have the directions plan and you just call Onstar, give them the address and they send the driving instructions through the radio with voice and turn by turn. Very easy to use.
    The exhaust note is the same, the flip / fold back seat in the SS meand no more damage to the leather when hauling.
    Both have remote start and satellite radio built in. Actually, its apples versus oranges outside of FWD versus RWD.
  • newman12fannewman12fan Member Posts: 2
    Is this even a contest? Dodge Charger all the way! First of all it's a way faster car b/c it's got the hemi! Second the body lines are way nicer than an impala.

    Also Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 12 Alltel Dodge Chargerjust surprised lucky fan Jimmie Funell in Rapid City, SD yesterday. This guy won a free trip to Bristol Motor Speedway where his name will appear on Newman's Alltel Dodge! How sick is that! I've never heard of anything like that with an Impala!!!
    Check out Newman surprising the fan:
  • garsarnogarsarno Member Posts: 72
    Unless it's the SRT version, the two car's peformance are identical. The Impala interior is by far nicer than the Charger but nowhere near as nice as the Chrysler 300.
    Nascar - not a fan, doesn't mean a thing to me.
    As far as the Hemi engine,a far cry from the 1970 version as installed in the Dodge Challenger, Charger, Super Bee etc. The Hemi is great for our Grand Cherokee but if there was a rebate on the Trailblazer SS in12/06, we would have bought it. Hard to pay sticker for the Trailblazer SS versus $4000 rebate for the Hemi Grand Cherokee plus a generous dealer discount.
  • batistabatista Member Posts: 159
    the two car's peformance are identical

    But the big difference is that the Impala is still a FWD grocery/family hauler. You can't expect too much performance with all the torque steer and uneven weight distrubution.
  • valatariavalataria Member Posts: 12
    I bought my 2007 Charger R/t new and it's been a disappointment from the start. car broke down at 1143 miles and filled the engine with gasoline. After repairs,motor has a knock and the dealership has refused to replace the engine. they have removed the engine and rebuilt it,but reinstalled the original piston rings,still knocks,replaced a/c compressor,still knocks,replaced belt tensioner,still knocks,removed and replaced left side cylinder head,still knocks. now they say they don't hear a knock,normal operation. Before you buy a Dodge Charger,Please read this edmunds forum on the transmission and all related finding from existing owners. I will never buy another Dodge product as long as I live. Should have stayed with Chevrolet. GM would have never put me throught what I have gone throught. Good luck if you buy Dodge/Chrysler product.
    Larry Jackson
  • beccatx33beccatx33 Member Posts: 1
    Hey Larry!

    I am having the same problem with Waco Dodge. I got a new 2008 Avenger RT from them less than a month ago. There are some scratches on the car and on the steering column that was there when I bought it. I showed it to my salesperson when I bought the car. Since then I have just been getting the run around from them and the manager. Did you ever have any luck in dealing with them?
  • blazer6973547blazer6973547 Member Posts: 24
    not quite sure but im pretty sure that model was based on a caprice... you cannot compare a new car to a 10+year old car...never tested the charger(i would choose the charger just cuz of looks + rear wheel) but i am not impressed with the base model impala of 06. would prefer ther 03 era of impalas to the new ones. right now im still in the late intrepids but charger is for me next year
  • blazer6973547blazer6973547 Member Posts: 24
    all dealerships are the same, they all give you a i have to bring up the many different quad 4`s 2.3 2.4 single or double cam they were all junk. along with the 3100 transmission...oh my, and dont forget the 98-02 2.2L blowing head gaskets for a past time...all in all, GO 3.1 multi port GO!!!! best engine ever built
  • valatariavalataria Member Posts: 12
    Sorry it too so long to respond,but shortly after Allen Samuels took over the DCJ dealership,my Charger was taken care of very quickly. I no longer own the Charger. I have purchased from Allen Samuels Dodge two Challenger R/T. I recently traded my last R/T in on the car of my dream,(Challenger SRT8). I am treaded like family at the Allen Samuels Dodge Dealership in Waco,Tx. Wouldn't go anywhere else to purchase a vehicle. Atmosphere I totally heart warming and greeted with respect by everyone.
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