Daytona 50th the most powerful Charger ever

Remember the Dodge Charger Daytona? Perhaps a niche one for European tastes, but a massive deal in the history of American sports cars. Fifty years ago Dodge homologated a special Charger for NASCAR use (see the pic below), with an enormous rear spoiler for stability and a chiselled front end replacing the standard car's bluff snout and improving aero. It became a muscle car icon, partly thanks to just 501 being made (the minimum amount required for homologation) and partly because of how crazy it looked. But mostly because the race car was the first to set a NASCAR 200mph lap record. One that stood for 17 years...

To mark the anniversary, Dodge has made this, the Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody 50th Anniversary Edition. Catchy. Broadly the car is as that name would suggest, with a few minor tweaks. So in true anniversary edition limited run fashion, it comes with special stickers - in this case a 'Daytona' decklid motif, like an old Charger - a bespoke colour option (B5 Blue seen here is offered alongside Pitch Black, Triple Nickel and White Knuckle), unique details inside, wheels in a colour not offered elsewhere and a limited production run - 501, just like the original.

The Widebody bit is easier to explain, this Charger using exactly the same broader shell as introduced on Dodge's four-door muscle car earlier this year. The Hellcat part of the name is more interesting than it's ever been, the 50th Anniversary Edition receiving an ECU tickle to 717hp (torque stays at 650lb ft). Bear in mind, too, that that is US horsepower, so just about 730hp in metric money. Or more than a Ferrari F8 Tributo...

Beyond that this special edition is the Charger Hellcat we've come to know and admire fondly from across the Atlantic; the official line from Dodge is that this car is both "recognising the brand's performance heritage and staying true to our roots by offering high-performance, collectible vehicles that continue to defy the trends and deliver attainable performance that can't be found anywhere else." Sounds about right; do you know of any other 700hp saloon cars?

Orders for the Charger Anniversary Edition will open later this year, with deliveries beginning early in 2020. The car is going to give those customers "another way to display legendary Dodge performance attitude" - certainly it's not going to be mistaken for anything else, even in America. Prices aren't confirmed just yet, though expect a healthy premium over the $65k a Hellcat currently costs in the States. For eager NASCARists in the UK, there is a Charger for sale here, albeit with just the 707hp - Β£60,000 and it's yours...

Search for a Dodge here

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Comments (13) Join the discussion on the forum

  • ZX10R NIN 15 Aug 2019

    They needed to make it a bit more out there, also I'm not a fan of the wide body Charger.

  • emperorburger 15 Aug 2019

    Decals, embroidered seats and a remap. The perfect way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of an iconic car.

  • gruffgriff 15 Aug 2019

    Yes, poor show. A simple daft wing would have cost just a few bucks.....was never happy Charger appeared on a 4-door sedan anyway. Hrrmmmph. Mumble mumble. Millenials in charge...

  • steviegunn 15 Aug 2019

    HPP did a much better job in 2009 on the Challenger.

  • unsprung 15 Aug 2019

    steviegunn said:
    HPP did a much better job in 2009 on the Challenger.


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