Back in mid-August of 2022, the Dodge brand introduced the third-party convertible option from Drop Top Customs for the Challenger, stating that the topless option was available for R/T, R/T Scat Pack and SRT models. The 1,025-horsepower 8-second Demon 170 is an SRT model and since we have began talking about the 170 model, we have gotten a surprising number of questions as to whether this final Last Call model could be included in the dealership-offered convertible package.
Unfortunately for those interested buyers, the official answer from Dodge is “no”.
When readers first started asking about adding the convertible option to the 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170, I figured that the brand would not be offering that combination. The removal of the roofline of the modern Challenger leads to some reduction in chassis rigidity, so the convertible package includes chassis reinforcements to maintain the integrity of the unibody structure. However, there was even a convertible on display at the Roadkill Nights Vegas event, sitting next to one of the Demon 170 display models, leading some people to believe that there could be a 170 convertible option, but that is not the case.
As you might imagine, those reinforcements add weight that would negatively impact the quarter mile abilities of the Demon 170. Between the added weight and the general level of risk with a 1,025-horsepower car with a key structural component being removed, we are not at all surprised that Dodge is offering the convertible package with the 2023 Challenger SRT Demon 170.
Some of you are surely wondering why anyone would want to transform the 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 into a convertible. The convertible package obviously isn’t ideal for a drag car, so why would someone want that? To be unique and to make their car worth more money in the future.
It is no secret that many of the people buying a 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 are paying big money, with many dealerships advertising markups of $100,000. For some buyers, the Demon 170 will be their next track toy, but for others, this car is an investment. These investment cars will rarely be driven and they will likely never be raced, so it really doesn’t matter to those buyers whether the car is a bit heavier. For those buyers, who are paying upwards of $250,000, adding another $25,000 for the convertible option would make the car unique from the other Demon 170s and that uniqueness would likely lead to a higher future collectible value. With 3,300 Demon 170s planned for production and relatively few options, the reality is that many of these cars will be similar, if not identical. Investment buyers will do their best to make their 1,025-horsepower Challenger stand out in the future used car market and there is no question that cutting off the roof would make a car stand out from the crowd.
However, the Dodge brand isn’t going to indulge those investment buyers, which is why the sunroof (also a general detriment to drag racing) costs $10,000 and why the Drop Top Customs factory convertible package is not available with the 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170.
The good news is that Drop Top Customs takes on private customers, so a Demon 170 owner who is truly insistent on having a convertible muscle car with over a thousand horsepower can contact the convertible conversion company on their own, but Dodge won’t facilitate the conversion in the same way that the brand offers factory transformations of the R/T, Scat Pack and Hellcat models.