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Hellcats in the 9s

by Patrick Rall on

It took almost a year before we saw the first Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat running a 9-second quarter mile, but when it did happen, two different cars from two different shops laid down 9-second runs – with a team in Texas being the first into the 9s while a team in Maryland made back to back 9-second runs, including a record 9.77 ET.

977 hellcat still

Since the Hellcat Challenger went on sale late last year, private owners and shops have been working to see how quickly they can get the big beast down the quarter mile. Dodge has certified the 707hp Challenger as being able to run 11.20s with stock tires and 10.80s with drag radials, which owners have found to be realistic – and beatable with practice. However, owners were quick to begin seeing how far into the 10s they could get without major modifications, and when several cars got into the deep 10s right away, it would only be a matter of time before someone got into the 9s with a Hellcat Challenger.

This past Wednesday, the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat built by Fastlane in Houston, Texas was the first to break into the 9-second barrier. With aftermarket upper and lower pulleys, American Racing headers, a 150 hp nitrous oxide setup, an E85 conversion, an aluminum driveshaft, new rear control arms, a set of Mickey Thompson drag radial tires, and a good engine tune, this Sublime green beast ran an incredible 9.94 at 142.49 miles per hour.

hellcat 9s

The Texas crew was the first into the 9s, but their world record for the quickest Hellcat Challenger didn’t last long. Later that night, the folks from High Horse Performance headed to Cecil County Dragway in Maryland to see if the cooler air would get them into the 9s – and it did. In fact, the HHP Hellcat made two 9-second passes on Wednesday, both of which were quicker than the 9.94 from earlier in the day in Texas.

The HHP Hellcat Challenger is fitted with an aftermarket lower pulley, American Racing headers, full exhaust, a 150hp nitrous oxide dry kit, a 180 degree thermostat, drag radials wrapped around lightweight wheels and an engine tune to bring it altogether. The result of those mods and the cool, sea-level air at Cecil County allowed this Hellcat to lay down a stunning 9.77 run at 135.92 miles per hour. They would then back up that first 9-second run with a 9.91 at 139mph. This team was having a boost issue on the top end of the track, causing the lower trap speed; it may beat these times in the coming days or weeks.


Patrick Rall was raised a Mopar boy, spending years racing a Dodge Mirada while working his way through college. After spending a few years post-college in the tax accounting field, Patrick made the jump to the world of journalism and his work has been published in magazines and websites around the world.

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