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Modern Muscle Cars | CarMax

From Chevy to Dodge to Ford, there's something about the allure of a muscle car. Strong retro styling matched to modern performance and tech capability makes these cars a must-see if you're after something sporty. Plenty of room, plenty of style, plenty of power… all in a package that holds plenty of nostalgia.

If you're looking for a car that's as classic as it is practical, you need a muscle car—and there are plenty of choices worth a test drive. To help you on your search, we've compiled a list of the 10 best muscle cars for 2020 shoppers, based on CarMax sales data from November 1, 2019 through April 30, 2020.

  1. Dodge Charger SE
  2. Dodge Challenger R/T
  3. Dodge Charger R/T
  4. Dodge Charger SXT
  5. Chevrolet Camaro SS
  6. Ford Mustang GT
  7. Ford Mustang Ecoboost
  8. Dodge Challenger SXT
  9. Ford Mustang
  10. Chevrolet Camaro LT


Dodge Charger SE

10 Best Muscle Cars for 2020: Reviews, Photos, and More:Dodge Charget SE | CarMax

As a modern-day muscle car, the Dodge Charger SE is a great choice if you're seeking something practical and good-looking. It has a slab-sided, retro design that creates a classic-yet-contemporary look. When it comes to power, the 2017 Dodge Charger SE is decidedly practical, with a standard 292-hp V6 engine. Inside the cabin, there's plenty of room for five. For the 2017 model year (the last with the SE trim), the Charger boasts an upgraded infotainment system and touchscreen paired with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ capability. Standard and available features for the 2017 Dodge Charger SE include:

  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Power driver seat
  • Keyless entry and ignition
  • Six-speaker sound system
  • Blind-spot monitoring


Dodge Challenger R/T

Best Muscle Cars: Dodge Challenger RT | CarMax

From the outside, the Dodge Challenger looks like it's all about power: The long body and aggressive stance leave no question about its muscle car heritage. On the inside, the Challenger is a comfortable and roomy throwback that can easily seat four adults. Powered by a 5.7L V8 producing 372 hp, the 2017–2019 Challenger R/T has it where it counts—under the hood—and comes well-equipped throughout. The 2019 model year also offers the option of six-speed manual transmission. Standard equipment for the 2017–2019 Dodge Challenger R/T includes:

  • 20-inch alloy wheels
  • Functional hood scoop
  • Paddle shifters
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system


Dodge Charger R/T

Best Muscle Cars: Dodge Charger RT | CarMax

Muscle cars may be inherently retro, but there's nothing old-school about short overhangs and big wheels. That's what the Dodge Charger delivers, along with the thrill of a 5.7L Hemi® V8 engine putting out 370 hp. Best of all, the Charger is a full-size, four-door sedan—making it a definite contender if you're looking for a family car. Driver-assistance features include rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitors, lane departure warning with lane-keeping assist, and more. For 2018–2019 Dodge Charger R/Ts, expect standard features like:

  • 20-inch wheels
  • Sport-tuned suspension
  • Body-color rear spoiler
  • Eight-way power driver seat
  • 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system


Dodge Charger SXT

Best Muscle Cars: Dodge Charger SXT | CarMax

There's a reason the Charger is so popular, and it has to do with a blend of practicality and muscle car styling—with a helping of power. The Dodge Charger SXT shares the same four-door sedan body design and 292-horsepower 3.6L V6 engine as the SE, adding more standard features and options. Anchoring the 2017 Charger SXT's dash is an 8.4-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, along with a premium six-speaker sound system and an extra USB port. The available Rallye Group package increases the 2017 Charger SXT's power to 300 hp. Other features on the 2017-2019 Charger SXT include:

  • 18-inch painted aluminum wheels
  • 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Sport-tuned suspension
  • Dual-zone automatic temperature control
  • Sport cloth upholstery


Chevrolet Camaro SS

Best Muscle Cars: Chevrolet Camaro SS | CarMax

The fearsome SS Camaro is powered by a 6.2L V8 engine that makes 455 hp. Broad-shouldered and bold, the Camaro's design matches its power, while the interior offers ample room for four adults. Chevrolet's muscle car received a series of updates for the 2018 model year and was refreshed further for the 2019 model year. There are two SS trims: 1SS and 2SS. The 2SS includes interior accents and the Camaro's Convenience and Lighting package. Standard equipment on the 2017-2019 Chevrolet Camaro SS includes:

  • 20-inch wheels
  • Brembo® performance four-wheel disc brakes
  • SS-specific dome-shaped hood
  • Xenon headlights and upgraded gauges
  • High-intensity discharge headlamps with LED accents

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Ford Mustang GT

Best Muscle Cars: Ford Mustang GT | CarMax

Songs have been sung and movies have been made about the Mustang GT, and for good reason: It hits the target with styling, power, and convenience. For the 2017 model year, the Mustang GT offers a 5.0L V8 that puts out 435 hp, while the 2018-2019 Mustang GT boasts 460 hp. For the 2019 model year, there's additional differentiation across the GT trim, with the introduction of the GT Premium and the iconic Bullitt model. Across 2017-2019 model years, standard features on the Ford Mustang GT include:

  • 18-inch wheels
  • Six-speed manual transmission
  • Six-way power cloth front seats with driver-seat power lumbar
  • Dual exhaust with quad tips
  • Highland Green paint option (Bullitt model only)


Ford Mustang Ecoboost

Best Muscle Cars: Ford Mustang Ecoboost | CarMax

Long the domain of V6 and V8 engine power, muscle cars now roll with a turbo attitude, thanks to the Ford Mustang. The Mustang is the ideal blend of fuel economy and peppy performance. The 2017-2019 Ford Mustang EcoBoost features a turbocharged 310 hp four-cylinder engine that gets an EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined, when equipped with the 10-speed automatic transmission.1 You can choose between the EcoBoost trim and the EcoBoost Premium; the Premium adds leather sport seats, navigation, and more to the standard features offered on the EcoBoost. For 2017–2019 model years, that standard equipment includes:

  • 17-inch wheels
  • Limited-slip rear differential
  • Keyless entry and ignition
  • Aluminum dashboard trim
  • Active noise cancellation


>Dodge Challenger SXT

Best Muscle Cars: Dodge Challenger SXT | CarMax

If you want Dodge Challenger appeal—with muscle that's lean and trim—the SXT is a capable and powerful vehicle. The Dodge Challenger SXT boasts a 305-hp V6 mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. It's a combination that's hard to pass up: muscle car retro appeal, a roomy cabin, 300+ hp, and an EPA-estimated combined 23 mpg (with the V6 on 2017-2019 models).1 For 2017-2019, the Dodge Challenger SXT also boasts a solid list of standard equipment, including:

  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Seven-inch touchscreen
  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capability
  • Six-speaker sound system
  • Rearview camera


Ford Mustang

Best Muscle Cars: Ford Mustang | CarMax

The Ford Mustang boasts a timeless, classic design and the performance to match. It's also built to please, with a broad variety of trims, engines, and body types, including coupe and convertible. The Mustang's options range from practical to powerful, designed to keep the fun galloping on. From 2017–2019, engine choices range from a 3.7L V6 making 300 hp, to an EcoBoost turbo four-cylinder that makes 310 hp, to a 5.0L V8 that cranks out 435 hp. Choose from the following 2017-2019 Ford Mustang trims:

  • Mustang V6
  • EcoBoost
  • EcoBoost Premium
  • GT
  • GT Premium


Chevrolet Camaro LT

Best Muscle Cars: Chevrolet Camaro LT | CarMax

Few muscle cars can conjure up the romance of the open road quite like the Camaro. That's especially true with the modernized iteration of this Chevy. Thanks to a refresh for the 2016 model year, the Camaro stayed mostly the same from 2017–2019. For those model years, the LT trim is powered by a 2.0L 275-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Standard features on 2017–2019 models include:

  • Heated and ventilated leather-trimmed seats
  • Available remote start system2
  • Eight-inch touchscreen display
  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capability
  • Bose® premium nine-speaker stereo system (seven speakers in the convertible)

If you like exciting style and performance in a practical size, there's something here for you. From the traditional Mustang to the upstart Camaro and aggressive Dodge heroes, muscle cars can provide stress-free driving fun.

Looking to learn more? These related articles can help you on your search:

1Fuel economy figures are based on EPA estimates for when vehicle sold as new. Fuel economy may vary for reasons like driving conditions and vehicle history. Unless specified, figures are for vehicles equipped with an automatic transmission. See fueleconomy.gov.
2Remote start functionality may require the purchase of a subscription plan and/or a compatible device like a smartphone. See the owner's manual or manufacturer website for more information.
Unless otherwise noted, information related to these featured vehicles comes from third-party sources, including manufacturer information. Product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of third-party entities. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by these entities.

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