Dodge Charger: Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission / Gear Ranges

Dodge Charger 2011-2024 Owner's Manual / STARTING AND OPERATING / AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION / Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission / Gear Ranges

Do not press the accelerator pedal when shifting out of PARK (P) or NEUTRAL (N).


After selecting any gear range, wait a moment to allow the selected gear to engage before accelerating. This is especially important when the engine is cold.


This range supplements the parking brake by locking the transmission. The engine can be started in this range. Never attempt to use PARK while the vehicle is in motion. Apply the parking brake when exiting the vehicle in this range.

When parking on a hill, apply the parking brake before shifting the transmission to PARK. As an added precaution, turn the front wheels toward the curb on a downhill grade and away from the curb on an uphill grade.

When exiting the vehicle, always:

  • Apply the parking brake.
  • Shift the transmission into PARK.
  • Turn the ignition OFF.
  • Remove the key fob from the vehicle.


  • Never use the PARK position as a substi- tute for the parking brake. Always apply the parking brake fully when exiting the vehicle to guard against vehicle movement and possible injury or damage.
  • Your vehicle could move and injure you and others if it is not in PARK. Check by trying to move the transmission gear selector out of PARK with the brake pedal released. Make sure the transmission is in PARK before exiting the vehicle.
  • The transmission may not engage PARK if the vehicle is moving. Always bring the vehicle to a complete stop before shifting to PARK, and verify that the transmission gear position indicator solidly indicates PARK (P) without blinking. Ensure that the vehicle is completely stopped, and the PARK position is properly indicated, before exiting the vehicle.
  • It is dangerous to shift out of PARK or NEUTRAL if the engine speed is higher than idle speed. If your foot is not firmly pressing the brake pedal, the vehicle could accel- erate quickly forward or in reverse. You could lose control of the vehicle and hit someone or something. Only shift into gear when the engine is idling normally and your foot is firmly pressing the brake pedal.
  • Unintended movement of a vehicle could injure those in or near the vehicle. As with all vehicles, you should never exit a vehicle while the engine is running. Before exiting a vehicle, always come to a complete stop, then apply the parking brake, shift the transmission into PARK, and turn the igni- tion OFF. When the ignition is in the OFF mode, the transmission is locked in PARK, securing the vehicle against unwanted movement.
  • When exiting the vehicle, always make sure the ignition is in the OFF mode, remove the key fob from the vehicle, and lock the vehicle.
  • Never leave children alone in a vehicle, or with access to an unlocked vehicle. Allowing children to be in a vehicle unat- tended is dangerous for a number of reasons. A child or others could be seriously or fatally injured. Children should be warned not to touch the parking brake, brake pedal or the transmission gear selector.
  • Do not leave the key fob in or near the vehicle (or in a location accessible to chil- dren), and do not leave the ignition in the ACC or ON/RUN mode. A child could operate power windows, other controls, or move the vehicle.


  • Before moving the transmission gear selector out of PARK, you must start the engine, and also press the brake pedal. Otherwise, damage to the gear selector could result.
  • DO NOT race the engine when shifting from PARK or NEUTRAL into another gear range, as this can damage the drivetrain.

The following indicators should be used to ensure that you have properly engaged the transmission into the PARK position:

  • When shifting into PARK, push the lock button on the gear selector and firmly move the selector all the way forward until it stops and is fully seated.
  • Look at the transmission gear position display and verify that it indicates the PARK (P) position, and is not blinking.
  • With the brake pedal released, verify that the gear selector will not move out of PARK.


This range is for moving the vehicle backward. Shift into REVERSE only after the vehicle has come to a complete stop.


Use this range when the vehicle is standing for prolonged periods with the engine running. Apply the parking brake and shift the transmission into PARK if you must exit the vehicle.


Do not coast in NEUTRAL and never turn off the ignition to coast down a hill. These are unsafe practices that limit your response to changing traffic or road conditions. You might lose control of the vehicle and have a collision.


Towing the vehicle, coasting, or driving for any other reason with the transmission in NEUTRAL can cause severe transmission damage.

For “Recreational Towing”.

For “Towing A Disabled Vehicle”.


This range should be used for most city and highway driving. It provides the smoothest upshifts and downshifts, and the best fuel economy. The transmission automatically upshifts through all forward gears. The DRIVE position provides optimum driving characteristics under all normal operating conditions.

When frequent transmission shifting occurs (such as when operating the vehicle under heavy loading conditions, in hilly terrain, traveling into strong head winds, or while towing a heavy trailer), use the AutoStick shift control (if equipped) to select a lower gear. Under these conditions, using a lower gear will improve performance and extend transmission life by reducing excessive shifting and heat buildup.

During extremely cold temperatures (-22°F [-30°C] or below), transmission operation may be modified depending on engine and transmission temperature as well as vehicle speed. Normal operation will resume once the transmission temperature has risen to a suitable level.


The MANUAL (M, +/-) position (beside the DRIVE position) enables full manual control of transmission shifting (also known as AutoStick mode) Ú page 102. Toggling the gear selector forward (-) or rearward (+) while in the MANUAL (AutoStick) position will manually select the transmission gear, and will display the current gear in the instrument cluster as M1, M2, M3, etc.

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