Dodge Challenger

Dodge Challenger Image

Dodge Challenger

Dodge introduced the name Challenger in 1958 as the name of the limited series of Dodge Coronet (Silver Challenger). This model was only manufactured for two years, exclusively in silver color, then its production was stopped. In some places it’s referred to as the first generation but it rather represented an equipment level.

1959 Dodge Silver Challenger

First generation (1969-74)

The contemporary press received the Challenger skeptically, although people generally liked it a lot, which showed in the sales figures.

Chrysler meant this type to become a competitor to luxury pony cars like the Mercury Cougar or the Pontiac Firebird,

while its sister model, the Plymouth Barracuda was intended to compete directly with the Mustang. One of the keys to its success was the high range of equipment options, which seems unbelievable by today’s standards.

1970 Dodge Challenger R/T 426 HEMI

The R/T (road/track) version, for example, was only available with 380 (5.2 L) and bigger engines and included gadgets like a rev counter scaled up to 8000 rpm. The T/A (Trans Am) version was really designed for races (what a surprise: it took part in the Trans Am series in 1970). The suction-engine took the air through three twin carburetors and to prevent the poor thing from a shortness of breath, an air-scoop the size of a suitcase was fitted on the hood. With all the air it produced quite a lot of horsepower from the fuel, then waste gas left the car through a low-resistance double exhaust system before the rear wheels through Megaphone tips, with a matching roar of a sound.

1970 Dodge Challenger T/A

Perhaps the most memorable appearance of this car type was in the road movie Vanishing Point made in 1971, in which Kowalski is driving a ’71 R/T across America.

1970 Dodge Challenger R/T “Vanishing Point”

Although well received in its first year, sales soon fell dramatically as the pony car segment was already declining by the time the Challenger arrived, so classic Challys barely got five model years. Experts say that 1970 was the best. No wonder, back then the three big manufacturers were still fighting the horsepower war, so the Chally also came with seven engine types. King of the range was the same 426 Hemi that represented one of the most powerful passenger car engines of the world at that time. In ’71 the performance of the engines was already reduced and after ’72 the most serious engines were gradually withdrawn from production: by 1974 only two V8 versions were left (5.2 and 5.9 L) with a maximum performance of 245 HP, then Challenger production ceased without a successor.

Second generation (1978-83)

There was also a slightly modified Mitsubishi Galant that was named Challenger but let’s not waste any more words on that chapter…

Third generation (2008-)

The new era of muscle cars have brought about a resurgence: Dodge introduced the new Chally dressed in a very similar outfit as that of the original, in which nobody could complain about engine size or performance anymore.

2008 Dodge Challenger SRT

Ára: €-tól | Közzétéve: 2017-11-27 | Kategória: Dream cars