Home / Technology / New Dodge Challenger and Charger ‘Security Mode’ limits cars to 3 HP because people continue to steal them

New Dodge Challenger and Charger ‘Security Mode’ limits cars to 3 HP because people continue to steal them



It’s no secret that car thieves have something for high-performance Dodge muscle cars. Because of that, the company responds with a software update that will make life a little more difficult for those who want to live Hellcat life, but refuse to do so under legal means.

Soon to be available for chargers and challengers equipped with either 6.2- or 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engines, a new security mode locks the car’s full performance behind a four-digit code as an extra layer of security against thieves who have spoofed master key code, as if Two-factor authentication provides extra protection against people trying to access your Facebook profile. (If you do not have 2FA set up for your large online accounts or are not even aware of what 2FA is, you should probably do some research and move on.)

Without the four-digit code, suspected Dodge thieves will only be able to drive the cars at idle (675 rpm), limiting them to just 22 pound-feet of torque and less than three horsepower. Yes, three hp. Not 300 hp. Not 30. Three. Well, 2.8 hp to be exact. So if you ever see a Hellcat being driven suspiciously slowly and quietly, it could very well be stolen. All the more reason why legitimate owners give their cars a random turn, I guess.

Chargers and challengers with high horsepower from 201

5 onwards are qualified to have this installed retroactively free of charge by all Dodge dealers.

“When flashing into the computer of affected 2015 or later Dodge muscle cars, the protective software will limit engine power to less than three horsepower, ruining fast-paced excursions and jogs,” said Dodge boss Tim Kuniskis. “More than 150 cars are stolen every day in the United States. For any car owner, it’s terrible, it’s a problem and it’s a personal breach. Although statistically rare, car thieves have targeted Dodge muscle cars with high horsepower, and we want Dodge ‘Brotherhood’ to know that we are taking quick action and covering their backs. “

More than 1,000 chargers were reportedly stolen in and around the Detroit area in 2020 alone (around three every single day) while Charger Hemi and Challenger SRT Hellcat ranked first and second, respectively, on the list of vehicles most likely to be stolen in America for a couple years ago. However, these two are not the only FCA, Stellantis hot rods that have become questionably appetizing for thieves.

Late last year, a pre-production 2021 Durango SRT Hellcat SUV was swept right by an employee’s driveway in Detroit, and a Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk press car was once taken from the crowd at 6 p.m. Jalopnik during the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. We have contacted Stellantis to ask if the new security software will get to other models and will update this story when we hear back.

Safety Mode software will be available for Dodge muscle cars in the late second quarter of 2021.

Do you have a tip or question for the author? You can reach them here: chris.tsui@thedrive.com


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