• Oct 14th 2008 at 3:02PM
  • 20
Click either image for a high-res gallery of Dodge's SEMA-bound Challengers

While a V10-powered Challenger is devilishly delectable, our Mopar-loving hearts beat for something a bit more balanced with a healthy dose of motorsports cred. To that end, Dodge created the Challenger Targa to campaign in the Targa Newfoundland enduro earlier this year.

Affectionately known as "Samantha," the Challenger began its existence as a Mopar Challenger drag race car, complete with a 392 HEMI V8 crate motor putting 540 hp and 490 lb.-ft. of torque to the rear wheels via a Tremec six-speed manual and a modified rear diff. The green hue of the Challenger Targa is pulled from the Viper, but the snake's influence doesn't stop at aesthetics. A KW race-ready suspension, six-piston calipers with 380mm Stop-Tech rotors (front) and 355mm, rear discs with four-pot calipers are all culled from the V10 'Ring-slayer.

In addition to the Targa model, Dodge and Mopar will debut the Challenger Blacktop at SEMA, retaining the 5.7-liter V8 and six-speed manual gearbox. Most of the modifications focus on style, including the black-on-black racing stripe paint scheme, custom spoilers and front brow. A Mopar coilover kit drops the Blacktop over 22-inch Viper wheels created by Factory Reproductions and wrapped in 265/35/R22 (front) and 305/30/R22 (rear) Dunlop rubber. A Mopar cat-back exhaust and cold air intake remain the only modifications to the engine, and if the V8's sound isn't intoxicating enough, a Kicker audio system will keep the Blacktop's driver entertained while bombing along Highway 15 on their way to the SEMA festivities in Sin City.


Dodge Challenger Blacktop
A menacing creation from the minds of the Mopar Underground design team. The Dodge Challenger Blacktop began life as a 2009 Dodge Challenger R/T equipped with a 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 and six-speed manual transmission. Mopar Underground added custom-made spoilers and front brow. To finish off the look, a black-on-black racing stripe paint scheme was added. The "in the weeds" stance and superb handling characteristics are accomplished by the Mopar coil-over suspension and strut tower brace. Blacktop rolls on massive 22-inch Dodge Viper wheels from Factory Reproductions wrapped in Dunlop tires measuring 265/35 R22 front and 305/30 R22 rear. To ensure the powertrain can keep up with the suspension, underhood performance is enhanced. The addition of Mopar components, including a cat back dual-exhaust, cold air intake, allow the HEMI V-8 to breathe easy. The interior has been enhanced with Katzkin leather seating finished in bright red plus a Mopar Kicker audio system for premium sound.

Dodge Challenger Targa
The Dodge Challenger Targa is a full-blown competition car that raced and completed the infamous Targa Newfoundland race this year. "Samantha" started life as a Mopar Challenger drag race package car. Many features were borrowed from the Dodge Viper, but the most noticeable is the snakeskin green paint. To keep the front end down, a Mopar chin spoiler "Splats" developed in a full scale wind tunnel, was added to the front of the car. Mopar gauges keep a close eye on the vital signs. The Mopar hood is equipped with a scoop to make room for the 540-horsepower, 490 lb. ft. of torque, 392 HEMI® V-8 Mopar crate motor. Mated to a Tremec six-speed manual gearbox, the engine blasts power to the rear wheels through a production 2009 modified gear ratio in the rear end. An abundance of fade resistant stopping power comes from Stop-Tech brakes. Up front, the six-piston calipers clamp 380-millimetre rotors, while in the rear, four-pot calipers work with 355-mm rotors. Developed by KW, the race suspension and brake upgrades came from a proven hero - the Dodge Viper ACR, which just broke the production car lap record at the world-renown Nurburgring in Germany. With only a few exceptions, the Dodge Challenger Targa was built using parts available through Mopar.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      Man, Dodge is making me love the Challenger more everyday. As if I didn't want one already, now they show us these two and the SRT10 Concept. Awesome.
      • 6 Years Ago
      No thanks, it got beat in the Targa by a Mazda Miata.


      16-1994 Mazda Miata
      22-2008 Dodge Challenger
        • 6 Years Ago
        There were what? 9-10 classes. It was based on the stop watch. The Challenger received a FIA-esqe time penalty in one of the early stages.

        (5 minutes... that tends to drop ya down the overall standings... just ask Hamilton or Bourdais!!!)
        • 6 Years Ago
        Racing is based on the stopwatch, that's kinda the point :) The 5 minute penalty was for missing stage 3-6. Miss a stage, you get a big penalty. Logical enough and it's in the rules.

        I know they had some trouble keeping brakes under that monster. Lots of power and lots of weight means lots of work for the brakes.

        Sounded awesome and made all the other cars invisible though. Except for the Group B Quattro.
        • 6 Years Ago
        feh... following your logic the most desirable car would be ... a 1969 bmw 2002

        Well I guess those are pretty neat cars but rally results seem to be a poor indication of the worth of a car.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I love that green one!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Dodge should of offer the Challenger in that color trim.
      • 6 Years Ago
      looks like they have to chop the roof a little to make it more meaner....

      DO IT.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I got to see (and hear) this car up close when it was here for Targa Newfoundland. I've got a few pics on flickr of the cars. Here's the above mentioned Mopar Targa car:


      It sounded like a monster when i was leaving the parking lot. They had a standard SRT8 version as well, but it didn't have quite the presence of the Targa

      • 6 Years Ago
      Uncanny Resemblance to the 70' Challenger T/A:

      Pretty Slick!

        • 6 Years Ago
        I actually never realized they were that similar!
        Thanks for the link, i have both cars saved back to back on my background
      • 6 Years Ago
      Did anyone actually read the press release?

      "Developed by KW, the race suspension and brake upgrades came from a proven hero - the Dodge Viper ACR,"

      Um, I want to know how easy/hard it was to put Vipers suspension pieces on an LX vehicle....
      • 6 Years Ago
      Two words: Simply badass!!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Man, look at that front wheel dangling in the air. Usually when a muscle car does that, it's due to a wheelie.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It's called 'front heavy a** car.'

        For a seond there I thought it was a 4-banger FWD ricer lifting a wheel.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think T.I. is driving the blacktop in his new video
        • 6 Years Ago
        Damn dawg! T.I. ridin' in a Dodge?? Does Dale Jr & Chevy know this???

        :) :)
        • 6 Years Ago
        I thought it was too at first, but his has SRT on the seats and an SRT badge in the grille
      • 6 Years Ago
      The Blacktop has Jay Leno Syndrome...

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