Fifty years ago, Dodge commissioned Creative Industries to build the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona as a homologation special to satisfy NASCAR rules. The extraterrestrial-looking coupe conquered at the race track, broke records, and frightened any onlooker possessed of a weak constitution; it's claimed that even the carmaker's general manager at the time, Bob McCurry, considered the Charger Daytona the ugliest car he'd ever laid eyes on. Time having worked its magic, Dodge is celebrating the now-iconic Winged Warrior with the 2020 Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Daytona 50th Anniversary Edition. The new model goes without a nose cone and vertical stabilizers, but it does loose 717 horsepower from its 6.2-liter supercharged V8, which is 10 more than the standard car.
The grunty sedan will be available in four colors: Pitch Black, Triple Nickel, White Knuckle, and B5 Blue exclusive to this model. B5 was the original paint code for a Blue Fire Poly hue available on Dodge and Plymouth products built between 1969 and 1972. Evoking the original as well as highlighting the decklid spoiler on the new Charger, the black, nickel, and blue sedans get white "Daytona" decals on the rear quarter panels and a white spoiler, matching white Hellcat badges on the front fenders. White cars get blue "Daytona" decals and spoiler, and Hellcat badges in a bright finish. Twenty-inch Warp Speed wheels finished in Satin Carbon on all-season Pirellis and black Brembo brakes complete the exterior overhaul.
Inside, heated and cooled 12-way adjustable performance seats are trimmed in Nappa leather and Alcantara, with blue cross-stitching joining seatbacks embroidered with the word "Daytona." The flat-bottomed, suede-wrapped steering wheel with silver stitching and "velour-bound" floor mats will only come in this model, the festival of special appointments also including the dynamica suede headliner, carbon fiber instrument panel and bezels, light black chrome trim pieces, and blue stitching on the dash, shifter, center console armrest, and door panels.
Dodge will only produce 501 units, said to match the number of cars necessary for NASCAR homologation at the time, and each wears a plaque identifying it as "X out of 501." NASCAR rules in 1969 demanded 500 units, actually — the car Dodge built in 1968 to race was called the Charger 500, in fact. Also, Creative Industries built 503 1969 Charger Daytonas for the U.S. and another 40 for Canada, but who's counting? Another thing about the original car: They were expensive, they didn't like street duty, and dealers couldn't give them away, often resorting to removing the nosecone and wing to get the cars off lots. We don't think there'll be any such issues this time around.
Dealers begin taking orders for the Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Daytona 50th Anniversary Edition in the fall, deliveries to commence in early 2020. Before then, visitors to this weekend's Woodward Dream Cruise in Pontiac, Michigan can check out the sedan at Dodge's display at the Modern Street HEMI Shootout.