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OK, so I have been browsing this site for a while, and recently joined last week. I introduced my self on the newbies page for everyone to see. If you have not read it ill give you a brief rundown. I am a 21 y/o Solider currently deployed in afghaniland. I have done nothing but fantasize about the challenger for the last 2 years or so. Now, when i get back to the states, i will finally have the money i need to purchase my dream car. And this is where my dilemma begins, as im sure you all have been through a similar dilema when prepping to purchase your challenger. Im going to be getting out of the army, and moving back to los angeles. I am currently learning how to drive manual here ( we have manual trans toyotas we use). So my big questions is 1) should i go ahead and go after the R/T manual. Or 2) should i pick up a SE auto. Ive never driven a manual in a big city, so idnt know if it it annoying or not lol. Also, gas is pretty expensive in so cal, and to the owners that read this, is there a big difference in MPG between the two. btw, i plan on modding in the long run, i pllan on keeping this car long term. i will be purchasing in full cash at the time, with budget around 22k. i found lots of used R/Ts i like for about 20k so yea. Thanks for the time guys!
 

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I'm going to be an NCO for a minute and do two things...1.welcome to the site and enjoy! There is a lot to learn here. 2. Don't be that guy that spends all his deployment money (in cash) on a car. I've seen too many cars get repo'd and/or sold. Talk to local dealers where you are headed and get a good deal with a decent monthly payment. You'll help your credit and have the extra cash for mods.
 

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haha yea i know im a NCO to and ive seen the same thing happen. Dont worry, ive sat down with my wife, and we did the math and it wont be an issue. ive had those guys who go out and buy a brand spanking new car for 30k, just to get it repoed within about 6 months.
 

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Unless you know that you'd love to have a manual transmission, I would get the automatic if it were me. You can still (sort of) shift the auto manually with "AutoStick" if you want but in traffic it's not a PITA like the manual is.

Also, 2014 SXT models can be had for $24K if you look around. I paid $24.5K for mine back in November when they'd only been out a few months. If you want a R/T and you're looking to spend the same amount, you're going to be talking a 3-4 year old model with miles on it and little to no warranty and possible timing chain issue to worry about, although that is now being recalled and repaired for free by Chrysler. Just some stuff to look into.
 

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Not sure if you had the chance yet, but the best way to decide is to take each one for a test drive. As soon as you get back, get behind the wheel of an SE Auto and an R/T Manual. Warning though, the power of the Hemi will probably sway you in the end! Good luck, thank you for your service and keep us posted!
 

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Unless you know that you'd love to have a manual transmission, I would get the automatic if it were me. You can still (sort of) shift the auto manually with "AutoStick" if you want but in traffic it's not a PITA like the manual is.

I agree it's really up to you as far as transmission. I went with the auto because I lived in DC at the time and the thought of sitting on I-495 with a manual was painful. I can imagine the LA area is the same. The autostick option can be fun and if you can drive those POS Toyotas over there you should be good with a manual
 

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As far as the MPG between the two, not really a difference and the fact that for the first few months/years you will love that WOT sound you MPG will be shot down anyway, lol. As said above, if you don't mind clutching and shifting in traffic a standard is fun. The technology in the electronic shift of the auto/auto stick along with a tuner to fix the shift delay makes it just as fun.
 

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First, thank you for your service to our country!

My only question is why go for an SE Auto or an R/T stick? Why not R/T auto? If MPG is an issue, I'll tell you I got a top of 27.6 mpg back in November when I drove from Long Island to SEMA. This was on a daily driven R/T automatic with 22" wheels and 90k on the clock (103k now).
 

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2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Classic
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I live in San Diego, used to live in both LA and Orange County. For me, it was a no brainer. Automatic was my decision from day one. But I'm 52. At my age, when you're presented with two options, you choose the one that gets you home the earliest.

You're a young man. If I were your age, I would probably choose a 6 speed R/T. You're gonna love your Challenger no matter what transmission you choose, but I think you will enjoy rowing gears for now.
 

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Thank you for your Service and Welcome back home! Young with a wife, probably getting ready to start a family, gotta find a job, learning to drive a stick, can your wife drive a stick?
In my opinion I would be thinking practical at this time and go with the peppy six cylinder Challenger. Of course at 21 I wasn't very practical but I wasn't married either, LOL! You will be driving a classy ride with any model or trim level you choose.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I appreciate all the support! As far as my wife is concerned, she said if i want amanual her dad would teach her how to driv stick while shes home in cali. She has about 7 months so she should get it. Ok so this might sound dumb but its kind of a pride thing i guess. Having a manual guess would make it feel more like a muscle car, and more manly as stupid as it may sound lol. If the MPG isnt a big defference then hands down im getting me a hemi :) lol. Its dumb, but i literally look online everyday, specifically craigslist, at all the challengers. I know i wont be able to buy them cuz im over here but yea haha. a guy can day dream. Oh, as for starting a family, not any time soon man. Im getting through college to go to med school, and my wife is going to college full time, with no desire for kids any time soon. So it will be just us for the next 7 years at least :). of course i say that now but God has a way of changing plans
 

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An other purchase option

Have you considered the Post Exchange option of buying the car? I have heard of guys buying at a decent discount going that route.

When you return Stateside, there are a couple of Challenger organizations beside this forum you might look at for assistance and gathering. PM me for additional info..


Thanks for your service and stay safe over there!


Jeff
 

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None of what you said is dumb. At least now you know what direction to go towards. You have a little time to do more research and when it's time, you'll have an awesome Hemi in your hands! Manuals are such a blast and I'm sure your wife will get the hang of it in no time! 'Til then, hang out here and gather all the information you can....we'll be glad to help!
 

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when i got back my wife got me my saving grace a 2011 rt 6 speed with the stp package just what i wanted she said there was a srt there with a auto stick but she knew me and she got it right for me dont let the car drive you you drive the car alot of my freinds have autos and love them but for me the manual was the way to go it doesnt mattter what people think about your car its yours if you think about it ur the one who loves to drive it so no matter what you decide get what you want when i have a hard day in the mil as well i do nothing but get in the beast and drive saves me every time hence the name saving grace its on you bro have fun and good luck
 

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Thank you for your service brother ! As far as gas mileage is concerned, I get 13 - 14 in the city and 24 - 29 on the highway with my six-speed. Good luck on your plan, I am sure it will all come together for you !
 

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First and foremost, thank you for your service!!!

I wouldn't make the decision based on gas mileage, sure doesn't seem like there is much of a difference. And if you buy the six you probably end up wishing you had bought the Hemi, so save yourself the hardship. LOL

As for the auto vs manual, I have driven both and they are both fun! Stick is great if you have never owned one and you are just starting out, you are young etc. but for me and and sometimes for us older guys that have been in this game for many years, it gets old. And, if you have ever been to the track, no matter how good you are at rowing through the gears, you will always get spanked by the smart a$$ with the auto! LOLOL

Best of luck!
 

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R/T 6 speed without a doubt. The car is a total blast to drive! MPG difference between an SE/SXT and R/T is not significant, maybe 3-4 mpg? I get about 15mpg in the city and about 23-25mpg on the hwy usually. My in-laws had an SE for a while and it was getting maybe 17mpg in the city and 26-27mpg on the highway. There's had 250hp while mine had near 400hp and much more torque.

Nothing wrong with autos either, I just think the 6 speed is more fun. My R/T 6 speed has been my daily driver for 3 years now, 45,000 miles or so, and I still love it as much as the day I bought it. I've driven in some pretty bad traffic before as well. 1% of the time it gets annoying using the clutch in stop n go traffic, otherwise 99% of the time the car is an absolute blast to drive.

Someone above had a good idea regarding buying your car. I'd maybe put $10K down or so, then finance the other $10-12K provided you can get 1.9% or 0% financing, that way it helps your credit and it allows you to keep some of your cash in the bank, invest it, use it for some mods, go on a nice trip with your wife, fix things around the house, or just have it for an emergency fund. Payments on $10K won't be very much at all, just a thought.

By the way thank you for your service. My good friend has been to Iraq and Afghanistan over the last couple of years in the air force fixing F16's and A10's.

Either way you go you'll have a nice Challenger so you can't lose!
 
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