Dodge Unleashes a Festival of Internal Combustion

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
dodge unleashes a festival of internal combustion

In the face of an inevitable EV onslaught, Dodge is determined not to go quietly into that good night. Yesterday, they showed plans for a half-dozen Charger/Challenger special editions for its final model year in 2023, tag-teamed a shop in Florida to make Chally convertibles, and heralded the return of the Durango Hellcat.

First up – the Charger and Challenger. This will indeed be the final year for those models as we know them, with production ceasing in Brampton at the end of 2023. Every copy made in this model year will earn addenda typical for this type of send-off, including a ‘Last Call’ plaque under the hood and a palette of popular throwback colors including B5 Blue and Plum Crazy. The so-called Jailbreak models, which permit an off-menu mix-and-match of paint and options, now expand to the Hellcat trim as well.

There will be six special edition models doled out in dribs and drabs over the next month or so, all said to be some sort of callback to a previous model or trim. This does not necessarily mean they’ll have more horsepower than current iterations. We think that’ll be saved for SEMA, where a seventh and final special edition will be shown. These will all be part of the production mix and not available for order.

Speaking of being doled out, Dodge is going to shake up its dealer allocation process for these machines in 2023. Anticipating fans and gearheads want one of these monsters before they’re gone for good, the company plans to publish its entire allocation – where, what models, and how many – on a public forum on their website. This will permit customers to track down the car they want and chase after it at a specific dealer. They’re doing this all at once in October for the entire model year, another aspect of this plan which is unorthodox.

Elsewhere, the company has partnered with a custom shop in Florida to make the closest thing we’ll ever get to a Challenger convertible. Dodge will ship a new rig right to the customizers, who will then send it to yer dealer for delivery. They are also going to make available a body-in-white Challenger ($7,995) and a full drag car less the powertrain ($89,995). Also on tap? Licensed carbon fiber parts including an entire 1970 Dodge Charger body which can be built into a finished vehicle. Yee haw.

Those of you who need three rows of seats can opt for the newly-returned Dodge Durango Hellcat, a muscular SUV cracking out 710 horsepower and enough speed to get the kids to soccer practice on time. No, really – this beast does 0 – 60 mph in 3.5 seconds while also having the capacity to tow 8,700 pounds (it likely can’t do both at the same time, however).

[Images: Dodge]

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  • Zerofoo "Hyundais just got better and better during the 1990s, though, and memories of those shoddy Excels faded."Never. A friend had an early 90s Hyundai Excel as his college beater. One day he decided that the last tank of gas he bought was worth more than the car. He drove it to empty and then he and his fraternity brothers pushed it into the woods and left it there.
  • Kwik_Shift There are no new Renegades for sale within my geographic circle of up to 85 kms. Looks like the artificial shortage game. They bring one in, 10 buyers line up for it, $10,000 over MSRP. Yeah. Like with a lot of new cars.
  • Ribbedroof In Oklahoma, no less!
  • Ribbedroof Have one in the shop for minor front collision repairs right now,I've seen more of these in the comments than in the 30 years I've been in collision repair.
  • Tassos And all 3 were ordered by Fisker's mother. Seriously, given Fisker's terrible record of Failure in the past, only an utter loser, (for example, VGhost or Art Vandelay?), looking for a BEV terrible enough to be a proper replacement of his 11 mile range Fiat 500E, would order one of these. (apart from Fisker's mother)