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Discussion Starter #1
I've been thinking again, that's dangerous, thinking about cars with frames and without,

Yesterday I was installing my Hurst shifter and got stuck on the driver side pin install so I jacked her up by front cradle and put jack stand under passenger side at factory preferred location...........looking at the underside of my car I got to thinking..........wow, not a lot of strength here.

You can argue why we no longer have cars with frames, some say because crush zones became mandatory, some say insurance company influence, unitized construction being easier to repair, etc...........doesn't matter.

But in the case of the Challenger like many frameless unitized construction performance cars they end up quite heavy. Should a V6 Camaro weigh 3760 pounds? Jesus that's the weight of a 1970 chevelle 4 door V8 wagon!

A 55 chevy is only 3100#?! Hell a full size 70 Monte Carlo is 3400#, its huge

I know, I know, Kevin (mrchen) you say, you are just getting old. Yeah, I am but I miss those days of my 70 Chevelle full frame, 454 with 12 bolt posi and ladder bar and coil over suspension. You could throw anything at that car, once motor plate was in, ladder bar and cross member set up and small roll cage it could handle 2000 hp.

Boy what my Challenger would run if she was 6-700 pounds lighter!
How much stiffer would she be if built on a frame?

Are these new cars better? In some cases yes, in other I would argue no, no the Challenger is not. Safer in an accident, as a better muscle car, no
 

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Considering muscle cars are supposed to go fast, safety should be a primary concern.
And some of that extra weight is from all the modern accessories. Look for more aluminum structure in the future.
 

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Its not the Unitized frame that makes them heavy and its nothing new Dart, Duster, Barracuda, Challenger , Camaros, and more had them .
Generally Full framed cars are heavier than Unibody.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No doubt many of the sixties and seventies cars did not have frames, the camaro has two, front and back! As did others, I liked the body on frame.
I just don't see how dodge can justify 4082 pounds, and yet such a soft weak flexing chassis. I just don't count this new construction a win
 

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Our unibody cars are much safer with the crunch zones for instance. That said, very expensive to fix. Body on frame is still good for heavy duty vehicles such as trucks.
 

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Old ladder frame cars were twisty as hell. You could see the distance between the dashboard and door change with throttle.
 

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Unibody construction by form is stronger then frame. Where as in frames the strength is greater along frame rails etc. the unibodys' strength is equalized and spread throughout. Our Challengers are 5 star crash rated side, front and rear. 4 star rollover. That probably would not be the case with the generic two side rail frame.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
frameless cars did twist, I just liked the fact that I had something solid to tie together and stiffen the car,

I have to face the fact that most people who buy a 2014 R/T just want to cruise around, some drive it everyday, whereas I am an enthusiast and bought this car for performance driving.

I truly don't care what the crash rating is, but I have to realize I am in a small minority. Id rather have a lighter stiffer car.

This car is difficult to stiffen, so many points to tie together and while you are tying them together you are adding weight to an already 4082 pound car.
 

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Cars today are heaver because of safety features. There are more steel cross members in doors, air bags all over the place, bigger breaking systems, independent rear suspensions, stronger roof supports, and the list can go on and on.

I will take all the extra weight and will be a lot safer. I like the looks of the older cars, but they are death traps, don't handle as well and don't get the mpg that our new cars have.

Case in point, 100 mph in my Challenger feels safe and easy to drive but in my Fathers '74 Corvette, you know you are doing 100 mph.
 

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I remember on a Jeep forum seeing a post about a guy who was lucky to survive an accident where the entire body of his Grand Wagoneer separated from the frame. That had to be some scary scene!
 
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