The HEMI Wars: Modern Challenger 392 Shaker Takes On Its Grandpa, A 1970 Road Runner 426
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The HEMI Wars: Modern Challenger 392 Shaker Takes On Its Grandpa, A 1970 Road Runner 426

These two muscle cars maybe five decades apart, but the ’Road Runner’ proves that age is just a number

Plymouth may be gone, but the car you’re about to see today is alive and kicking in. This old-school Road Runner took on a modern-day Scat Pack Challenger in a close battle fought in the F.A.S.T or Pure Stock Drag Racing Class.

1970 Plymouth Road Runner 426 HEMI

The HEMI Wars: Modern Challenger 392 Shaker Takes On Its Grandpa, A 1970 Road Runner 426
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The first car here is this extremely rare Plymouth Road Runner from 1970. Under the hood of this old-school beast lies a 426 HEMI V-8, that was rated at 425 ponies and 490-pound feet of torque. Now, take those numbers with a grain of salt. Compression ratio? 10.25:1. That 426 is mated to a 3-speed 727 Torqueflit Auto and 4.30 rear gears. The Road Runner tips the scales at 3866 pounds.

2015 Dodge Challenger 392 Shaker

The HEMI Wars: Modern Challenger 392 Shaker Takes On Its Grandpa, A 1970 Road Runner 426
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The opponent is a Challenger SCAT Pack Shaker that’s rocking the famed 392 under the hood. That 6.4-Liter HEMI produces 485 horsepower and 475 pound-feet of torque and has a compression ratio of 10.9:1. While a 6-speed manual was standard on the Scat Pack, this particular car has the optional 8-speed Torqueflite auto. Let’s talk rear axle gears. If you got the auto, you got 3.09 rear gears. This hefty machine ain’t light coming in at a whopping  4400 pounds.

The Race


You’ve seen the numbers. Here’s how they fared on the dragstrip and from the dig, it was nail-bitingly close. The two cars were pretty much neck and neck, but the Road Runner managed to clinch the win by a hair with an ET of 12.29 seconds at 114.68 mph, while the Dodge wasn’t far behind with a 1/4 mile time of 12.47 seconds at 113.90 mph.

Final Thoughts

The HEMI Wars: Modern Challenger 392 Shaker Takes On Its Grandpa, A 1970 Road Runner 426
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But the Road Runner beat the Scat Pack by a hair, with an ET of 12.29s @ 114.68 mph vs the Scat Pack’s 12.47s @ 113.90 mph. Swipe up to watch the race.

There’s nearly five decades between these two cars and yet, the old car managed to hold off the Scat Pack. This classic Mopar still has some shove, and these old HEMIs still hold their own even today, don’t they? Just imagine how much quicker this Road Runner can go on wider tires. It could do so much better than low 12s.

Khris Bharath
Khris Bharath
Khris is a classic car aficionado and adores his Jags and Alfas, although he keeps tabs on everything from super exotics like an old EB 110 to the latest from Lucid. Formula One is very close to his heart, and he diligently makes time to tune in for the Grand Prix on Sundays. Khris also loves his road trips and he prefers stick shift over an Auto any day.  Read full bio
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