One of the first things people were quick to say about the 707-horsepower Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat when it was announced was “we’re gonna see a lot of those wrapped around trees.” Ladies and gents, meet the first Hellcat too wild for its driver to handle.
According to Colorado State Patrol, the SRT hellcat was being driven by a 34-year-old man with two passengers accompanying him. At around 8:00 pm, the driver “lost control to the right, then overcorrected and lost control to the left, and struck a tree head on.” Ouch.
Mercifully no one in or out of the muscle car was injured, apart from the brand new Sublime Green Challenger, with an emphasis on “brand new.” Street Legal TV reports that the particular Challenger in question had just left the dealer lot an hour ago.
The 6.2-liter, eight-cylinder supercharged HEMI engine that powers the Challenger has had people raving about the 707 ponies it produces, along with 645 pound-feet of torque. It’s easy to see how something with that many horses can get away from you, if not treated with respect.
In the case of this Hellcat, the police report states that drugs or alcohol weren’t factors in the crash, nor was excessive speeding, but those of us who’ve been around the block (sideways, in a drift) can tell you it doesn’t take a whole lot for a car of this size, weight, and power output to get squirrelly, particularly if the driver’s horsing around. The driver did land a careless driving charge, after all.
The mighty green Hellcat is currently sitting in a heap in some repair shop lot, reportedly with enough mechanical damage that it’ll likely be considered totaled by insurance. Sad ending for a car, but a very stark lesson that they shouldn’t be handled lightly, particularly the powerful ones. I really do wonder how many of these things will exist in 10 years.