• Nov 26, 2007
click above image for more high-res pics of the Dodge Challenger Concept

The Ford Mustang has held court in the modern day muscle car segment long enough. At least that's what Chevy and Dodge would like you to believe, as both brands are prepping their answer to the Mustang as we speak. Dodge's offering will of course be the new Challenger, and Allpar.com has dug up some news on the rear-wheel-drive muscle car's productions specs that was previously unknown. Along with detail information on each of the Challenger's drivetrains, including engines, transmissions and axle ratios, Allpar.com reveals two new features that the Challenger will sport when it goes on sale sometime next year as a 2009 model. The first is the same Hill Start Assist technology used on the Dodge Ram, Jeep Commander, Grand Cherokee and Liberty. Like the name suggests, HSA will hold the car in place on a hill, giving the driver a small amount of time to switch pedals and begin applying throttle. Hopefully it will save a few rear bumpers from some expensive bodywork. The second feature is called the Trak Pak, which is reportedly just a marketing term for a specific combination of transmission, shfiter and gearing. Available on R/T and SRT-8 models, the Tremec 6-speed manual is included, as well as a limited slip differential, though the axle ratio appears to vary between the two models on which the Trak Pak is included.

Follow the jump
for more including a complete breakdown of the Dodge Challenger's drivetrains.

[Source: Allpar.com]

Going over the breakdown of each model's drivetrain, the base 2009 Dodge Charger appears to be a bit of a letdown with its 3.5L V6 and 4-speed automatic. Allpar.com reports that the 4.0L Phoenix V6 will replace the 4.5L eventually, but probably not until the 2011 model year.

Also of note is that Allpar.com claims that the first Challengers will actually be 2008 models produced as early as next March. These will only be SRT-8 models with an automatic, and as we reported earlier, will likely number less than 5,000. It sounds like immediately following this initial run, Dodge will begin producing all three variants of the Challenger as 2009 models. Will the Dodge Challenger have the goods to knock the Mustang off its throne? We're guessing it will make a dent in Mustang sales, as will the new Chevy Camaro, but that the Mustang will remain the segment's sales leader.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 40 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      I can't believe all of the picky,negative comments about one of the most anticipated releases in automotive history. I saw new '70 Challengers on the showroom floor and this new versions looks and does everything better than the original. Let's just be elated that this exciting nameplate is returning and shades of the muscle car era is now with us in a safe beautiful package.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Man, what is it with Chrysler putting giant wheels and tires on a car that is going to look stupid with them. I mean, 18" wheel covers on a Charger look ridiculous, and they'll look JUST as ridiculous on this Challenger.
      • 7 Years Ago
      another stupid car from a stupid company. Oil is about to hit $100 a barrel and here comes a 4000 pound car with a 6.1 liter V8.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Uh oh, the Hummer is gonna get a break when this comes out. I'm seeing busted windows, dented bodywork and red paint splashed across Challengers.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'll wait for the one with the Viper engine, or whatever they'll have above the SRT-8. 425hp just isn't enough when there are plenty of 500+hp Shelby/Roush/Saleen/ect Mustangs floating around. I'm sure the new Camaro will see 500hp as well right out of the factory.

      I know it sounds odd, but 425hp just isn't enough. Not for their top model muscle/pony car. It would be if this car came out a couple years ago, but no longer. Especially for a car that I'm sure will cost over $40,000.

      As far as gas prices go, I wonder if the 5.7L hemi will have the 8cyl-to-4cyl deactivation technology the Charger does? If it does, gas mileage wont be too bad for what it is.
      • 7 Years Ago
      No manual v-6 model? Oh well. This thing with a v-6 probably wouldn't be worth rowing the gears in anyway. Two tons--sheesh. I guess it is the return of the '70's. Whale body mustangs, Challengers too heavy and late to the scene, oil going sky high...

      At least we don't have disco. ;)
      • 7 Years Ago


      This is "deja vu all over again".

      Muscle cars, $100/barrel oil, and government environmentalists has me thinking I'm reliving the 1970's.

      I'll wager that the new Camaro quickly succumbs to the Chevy Aveo platform - a "SS Avamaro" with racing stripes.
      • 7 Years Ago
      If you need HSA to drive a stick, then you have no business driving one.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This car is the real reason the Magnum is going out of production.

      Chrysler expects the Challenger to be a big hit and with the Magnum gone that means the plant can produce more Challengers to meet anticipated demand.

      There's no question this car is hot. I've also heard they will eventually offer a more poweful HEMI for the SRT-8 in 2009 or later.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The problem is that this car is much less of a long-run contender than the Magnum is. It's (by far) the most ungainly looking of the New Muscle/Pony Car set and, if the Charger is any evidence, will weigh the most.

        It bugs me that this is replacing the Magnum. In base form, the Magnum was still being bought in reasonable numbers by normal people and was hamstrung only by it's poor power in base form. Equipped with the diesel from the CRD Liberty, could have solved the power/performance problem that dogged the 2.7L.

        This car will be bought by a few enthusiasts at first, fight over a shrinking share of the market with the Camaro and Mustang, then will sit on dealer lots for months, followed by much hand-wringing by execs and analysts.

        Meanwhile, the Magnum is departing a niche that it had pretty much all to itself.
      • 7 Years Ago
      3.5L V6 with a 4-speed A/T???? HAHahahhah, they've got to be kidding... Even the base Mustang V6 has a 5-speed A/T. This is completely non-sense...

      On the other hand, the car is really hot.
      • 7 Years Ago
      3.5L V6 and 4-speed automatic = Rental Car

      Give a manual option for people who want some sort of economy.
      • 7 Years Ago
      [quote]Chrysler expects the Challenger to be a big hit and with the Magnum gone that means the plant can produce more Challengers to meet anticipated demand.[/quote]With gas at $3/gallon, the Challenger is NOT going to be a big hit. Initial sales will be strong, due to pent up demand from Challenger enthusiasts. After six months that demand will tale off dramatically.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I have a real job that pays real money and I'd like to keep as much of that money as possible so that I may invest it wisely in wine, women, and song not fritter it away on gasoline.
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