• May 3, 2008
Click above to see what the Vanishing Point Challenger looked like before

The Chrysler employees who entered the prototype Dodge Challenger in this year's One Lap of America may have taken the car's Vanishing Point theme a bit too seriously. Just like in the classic film, the stark white Challenger came face to face with a solid object. The car met its demise in Round 2's time trial event at Road America after getting loose through turn 1. It then left the track and came to a stop perched atop a tire-wall. This course of events departs slightly from the original movie plot, where the Challenger did not meet its destructive fate until the final frames. The film version also somehow managed to survive its own slew of off road adventures without much harm, proving that Hollywood doesn't necessarily mimic real life. Fortunately the Challenger driver, Erich Heuschele, came away from his off track excursion unscathed. The crew has reported that the car will be out for the remainder of events, though it was spotted leaving the track under its own power so a return might be a slim possibility. Check out the source link below for more images of the carnage.



5/4/08 - 2:40 PM EST - UPDATE: The team came back today with a second, orange Challenger, but since One Lap rules forbid changing cars mid-campaign, they're out of the running for points. On a related side note: one of the Chrysler employees drove the wrecked Challenger some 200 miles with no mechanical issues. The vehicle is current at a friend's shop, being repaired and prepped for the upcoming Targa Newfoundland Rally.

[Source: Car Domain Blog]


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  • 49 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      I say they just pull the plastic that is off all the way off. Get any mechanical stuff fixed, and drive it. Who cares what it looks like. It has character with the front end missing :)
      • 6 Years Ago
      I am sure this is a result of getting the car getting rushed to be ready for the event. No one had seat time in it and no one had a chance to sort the car out. Its a shame, it was a really nice looking car.

      I think these guys managed to crash one before the NHTSA has. At least we got that out of the way.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I'm curious why none of the journalists, who'd never driven it, didn't managed to total the Aston V12 RS at Paul Ricard. Then again that was a whole 24 hours after it had been on the stands at the show...

        Seriously though, sad.
      • 6 Years Ago
      How embarrassing for these guys. We just talked about how badass this car was and they wreck it already. Amateurs much?
      • 6 Years Ago
      The one car that Dodge made that I like... and two amateurs put it into a wall.

      I'd be curious to know the details of what actually happened...
        • 6 Years Ago
        Erich is far from an amateur. He's been racing Vipers (and anything else from Dodge with insane amounts of power) for many years, and is one of the best factory test drivers from any manufacturer.

        That said, even the best drivers still plant one in the wall every now and then. I'm glad he got away without injury.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Well that's a little comforting that they knew what they were doing... but what does it say for the car? Again though, hard to say for sure without knowing the conditions or actual cause.
      • 6 Years Ago
      A chrysler that can turn, that will be the day.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Guess the viper was all mercedes huh?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Don't forget the ME412 concept.
      • 6 Years Ago
      According to previous reviews I've read, the LX/LY cars handle pretty well for their big dimensions (and the platform was from mercedes I believe), so I don't get the ignorant "crappy American car handling" comments.

      Also, while I would like 100-200 lbs taken off (a realistic goal), all you people complaining that it weighs more than a freakin Mustang or GT-R (and yes i know the GT-R has some weight added for awd) don't get it. This car has much bigger dimensions, both inside and out (after all, this is essentially a 2-door charger) than a camaro, mustang, GT-R, etc. If you didn't complain about the weight of the charger, you have no excuse here, since the dimensions are essentially the same (of course the challenger will have a little less interior/trunk room than a charger, but that's always the case comparing coupes and sedans). Get the weight down to about 3,900 lbs without really affecting the price, and that would be great.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I can only hope this does not start some "Save the Enzo's" type of thing.

      A really nice car though, I'm guessing it will be repaired to new condition.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I doubt it. It was a pre-production model that was destined for the crusher anyways.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Good to see someone is driving it hard enough to beef it. that's a victory scar!
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'll take the wheels.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I lol'd. To be honest.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Silly charger, handling is for imports! Lol.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It's imported from Canada.....
        • 6 Years Ago
        And apparently knowing what car it is is for grown ups.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Reminds me of the Veyron's crash that messed up the production schedule.
      I wonder if this will affect the production schedule, or suspension settings?
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