Free Shipping On Orders Over $49. Details

Talk to an Enthusiast
1-877-887-1105
M-F 8:30A-11P, Sat-Sun 8:30A-9P

Challenger Air Suspension Systems: Styling & Performance in One

Written By:

Shop Challenger Air Suspension

Air suspension systems have advanced like any other technology over the reasons, making air setups consistently more viable in all situations than one might expect. Adjustments on the fly, amazing curbside appeal, and improved handling are hard to pass up in modern Challengers. Just be sure to have a pro take care of the installation.

Challenger Air Ride >

There’s no secret that you will be spending time modifying your third-generation Challenger’s suspension. Dodge did a wonderful job making the car much more agile than anyone would have expected, but it’s still a big and heavy car that isn’t much more graceful than a bull in a china shop. The suspension package beneath the car works, but there is much one can do to increase performance and comfort. The problem with raising the performance of the suspension system is that comfort will usually be sacrificed. Air suspension systems bundle everything you will need into one package to get the best of both worlds.

Challenger Factory Suspension

The Challenger’s factory suspension works with hydraulic shocks. These shocks are gas-charged shocks that are geared toward the performance genetics of the Challenger.

They are non-adjustable units with fixed ride height. Regardless of what kind of performance driving one is looking to do with their Challenger, the factory shock absorbers will be ditched for something more favorable.

What is Air Suspension?

Not every Challenger owner will be subjecting their car to the same environment every single day. Fitting a Challenger with fixed ride height and even fully adjustable shocks won’t cut it for those who need to make changes on the fly. Air suspension systems allow owners to select the settings they desire and control the vehicle’s ride height on the fly by using compressed air in the system.

How Air Shocks Work

Hydraulic shocks are still present with an air suspension system. The difference is that bellows are added to the shock units. As these bellows fill the ride height is raised; when the air is let out of the system the ride height lowers. This is controlled by an air compressor that will be mounted to the vehicle meaning the driver can control the vehicle’s stance from the comfort of the cabin.

Raising and Lowering Ride Height: Many performance car owners will opt to lower their car to help improve the vehicle’s handling. As the center of gravity is pulled lower to the ground, body roll and sway are greatly reduced.

Comfort is sacrificed as lowered suspension makes for a stiffer ride and increases the chance of uneven road patterns ruining the underside of the car. Being able to control ride height allows you to raise the Challenger for regular daily driving and lower it when you’re ready to take the car to the limit.

The Pros and Cons of Air Suspension

Air suspension is a full-package deal. You get the comfort and drivability of a streetcar when you want it and you get the performance and handling characteristics of a track car when you want it.

Full control over the suspension is worth it for most, but others may find that there are some drawbacks to this upgrade. The cost of an air ride system will run about the same as coil overs will and won’t offer the same amount of gains in track performance. This isn’t taking into consideration the cost of the install. If one wants to save some money and install this system themselves they will also find that the level of difficulty is quite high for a suspension upgrade. 

Pros

  • Comfort and Performance on Command
  • Adjustable Ride Height

Cons

  • Difficult to Install 
  • High Cost in Parts and Labor
  • Less Performance Gains than Coil Overs

Running on Air

Many will see past the drawbacks of getting involved with this sort of system and will still push forward on making the leap; the benefit of total control with ease is well worth the investment. The battle isn’t over with the initial purchase though. Once the parts are in you will need to prepare to install the air suspension on your Challenger.

What’s in the Package: Before you buy your air ride system you will want to take the time to decide whether or not you want to be able to control the ride height from the comfort of the car.

Not all kits will include the air compressor and what’s needed to hook it up to your system. If it doesn’t, you will get the shocks and all of the lines and fittings you will need to run compressed air through the system.

Some kits come with everything you need to run air but without the compressor. These are cheaper options but you will have to use an external source to fill the bellows.

How to Install: Installing the air shocks themselves is no different than installing regular shock absorbers. What separates the process is the addition of airlines and fittings for kits that will use an onboard compressor system.

If you are running an onboard compressor you will need to plan out the best route possible to run your lines and the best place to mount the compressor. You will also need to find the area you will want to run wiring for switches and power to properly control the system. For the do it yourselfer this is easily a full weekend project.

Fitment includes: 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, SRT-8, RT, SE, SXT, RallyeRedline, ScatPack, Hellcat, GT, TA, Demon