Charge It: Dodge Teases Facelifted 2019 Charger
The Dodge Charger and its Challenger cousin have been stalwart models of the Dodge lineup since the 2006 model year, back when the place was still called DaimlerChrysler.
By the way, it’s been 20 years since that “merger of equals” (which it totally wasn’t) and Automotive News has a fantastic longform piece on the milestone with behind-the-scenes stories from people who lived to tell the tale. The description of a senior-level German lighting up a cigar while steamrolling the “no smoking” exhortations of the Chrysler contingent tells you all you need to know about who was really in charge at the time.
I digress. Now, about that 2019 Charger. It appears a four-door Hellcat will continue after all.
FCA last hit the Charger with a major refresh for the 2011 model year, a machine of which your author owns a 2012 copy and enjoys immensely. It’s one of the few machines that can fit my 6’6” frame in stretch-out comfort yet routinely still return better than 27 mpg from the 3.6-liter Pentastar and eight-speed ZF automatic.
The Charger’s corners were softened for 2015 with a mild exterior facelift in the form of massaged taillights and a set of headlamps that look like wraparound sunglasses. By design, this teaser image doesn’t tell us much, beyond a slimming of the grille, potential LED mascara on the lower edge of the headlamps, and maybe some sort of nostril intake on the outboard part of the grille – at least on the Hellcat shown here. Spy photos of the Hellcat Charger have also surfaced in recent days.
Dodge touts the Charger as “America’s only four-door muscle car” and, with the demise of Chevy’s super but obtusely-titled SS, your author thinks they have a point. The company makes it clear it thinks customers enjoy the car’s aggro appearance, calling the new front end “sinister” and boasting of its “visual width.”
These exterior refinements are obstinately a stop-gap measure until a new Charger comes along, whenever that may be. Product timelines at FCA change with the wind, after all. Right now, the car is set for a redesign by 2021 with a switch to the Giulia or Ghibli platform, depending on who you talk to. The Ghibli base, called the M157 (a shortened version of the M156 platform found in the Quattroporte), is currently the most widely spoken of rumour.
With Sergio on his way out the door, there is every reason in the world to think the new corporate helmsman (or woman) will bin those plans in favor of building all trucks or all SUVs or opening a polar bear-friendly bicycle factory. Hard to tell these days.
Dodge promises more details about the 2019 Charger in the coming months.
[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]
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- IanGTCS Blue jays games are on AM so if I happen to be in the car when they are playing I listen. Sometimes I'll tune into the comedy station as well. If AM went away I'd really only miss listening to baseball but I imagine they would migrate to a local FM station.
- Syke I still listen, primarily because Richmond Flying Squirrels (AA - Giants farm system) road games are on 910AM.
- Timothy I have heard nothing in this article about the problems with the 3.3 liter engine. I have a 2014 Sorento with 3.3 v6. Purchased it from original owner with 68,000 miles on it. Drove it for 3 months, then leaking headgaskets! come to find out there is problem with head bolts pulling out of the block. Kia even has name for it, "soft block issue"! Dealer said not under warranty because I'm not original owner. I called customer service and they said same thing. They told me it was a defect but not under warranty. Pretty sad. After my Hyundai engine went bad and now this with Sorento, I'm done with both.
- IBx1 Telling employees to relocate when housing prices are hyperinflated and interest rates are kissing double-digits, right before the next great depression deletes all that "value" they'd have to buy?
- Jeanbaptiste The last time I used AM was in a Park area that said listen to 1300AM for water releases. That was a decade ago.
I could see a Durango “coupe” or a shortened one named Ramcharger.
If I had the financial means to do so, I'd buy a Charger in a heartbeat. The mileage would be a bit under my needs (I'd like at least 35 mpg as my DD is 84 miles round trip), but if I could afford one the fuel cost wouldn't be a big deal either most likely. In fact, I'd be driving one now if they had put the 99 concept into production. I thought that was a great iteration of what the Charger was to me. I've always bought used and with two exceptions they have always worked out well. I've wanted to see how far I could get a new car. All I've owned have been over 250k vehicles (the exceptions being the aforementioned 2). I figure I should be able to get a new one to a half million easy (came close with the 84 Shelby Charger which had 406K when I sold it). As it stands now, I'll probably not get the chance as I'm soon to be 66 and I expect my time on the road will decrease as I get older.