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Daimler's abuse of the Dodge Charger legacy.

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  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    especially once they went to the hidden headlight models. They Daytona used the nicer LeBaron coupe dashboard (I think the LeBaron GTS and Lancer used it as well) and some interior bits, instead of the more generic Aries/Reliant/400/600/Caravelle stuff.

    I never really liked the Avenger/Sebring coupe, but I do kinda like the '01+ Stratus/Sebring coupes. They do seem kinda "grown up", though, where with the Daytona was aimed more at the Mustang/Camaro type of car.
  • utterutter Posts: 79
    "Anyway, back to the Charger....
    Saw an old Dukes of Hazard, with the real Charger, on TV yesterday. My-my, that machine was fly! "


    I heard the movie wasn't too fly though...;-)

    I had a Charger sighting by me the other week. A Silver Charger SE. The front end of the car is really nice even though the other models have even more character. Was ncie to see one though. Anyone else catch any crazy sightings lately?
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Well a '68-'74 Charger is most fly! The car was fly, so that was the one to buy. ;)
    http://www.musclecarclub.com/musclecars/dodge-charger/dodge-charger-history.shtml
    Pre '68 and post '74 ummmm, not so good. :(

    Loren
  • xkssxkss Posts: 722
    I don't like the new Charger that much, but it is a lot better than the Intrepid that is replaced.

    I'm waiting for the 2010 Challenger (two doors and confirmed).
  • Oooh...don't insult Andre's car! ;)

    Anyone know how the Charger's doing, sales-wise? I'm starting to see them on the roads more.

    Though I will say that more than a year ago, I opined that the muscle-car revival was just in time for escalating gas prices. And I wasn't even thinking of the possibility of natural disaster. I wonder if the second-coming of the muscle cars is over before it even really started...
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    if nothing else, Dodge does seem to be on the ball, according to the recent ad for one I saw in Motortrend. It read... "The Dodge Charger Hybrid. It burns gas AND rubber!" :P

    As for sales, so far this year the Charger has sold 16,912 units. However, it didn't come out until sometime in May, as I recall. For the month of August, they sold 5,222 of them. I know that does sound kind of low, but I don't think the Charger is supposed to be as much of a mass market car as the likes of the Impala, Camry, Accord, Taurus, or the Intrepid. Also, the Charger isn't offered in an ultra-cheap version with the 2.7 like the Magnum and 300 are, so that might keep sales a bit low, as they might not get dumped in rental fleets to quite the degree of the Impala and Taurus, or the way the Intrepid did.

    Just for comparison, Dodge sold 4,585 Magnums in August, and 39,735 for the year. Chrysler's sold 9,934 300's in August, and 94,081 for the year.
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    The local Dodge dealer has at least ten Chargers lined up in a row, right at the front of the lot. This dealer isn't too big, so ten of anything represents a pretty substantial amount of inventory. Either the dealer can't sell them, or it stocked up on inventory in anticipation of strong sales. I haven't seen too many on the road, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything.
  • hercherc Posts: 8
    I have a 2006 RT Daytona and oh my, my, the car is most definitely fly! I wasn't sure about 4 doors either, but trust me, Chrysler did it right. Having owned a number of the old Mopars I can tell you that while some of those bodies are just plain incredible looking, the old ones couldn't hold a candle to the new Charger. The new one will out run, out handle, out comfort, and just flat out haul donkey all while getting 24 MPG highway on regular unleaded. Everywhere I've been with this car people either don't care about the number of doors, or they forget about it in a hurry once they see it much less drive one. I was thinking about waiting for the 2009 Challenger but who knows what it will look like and if they will even get there. Gas prices and customer buying habits can change product planning in a hurry. I'm completely satisfied with the new Charger.

    Know what else? It will flat out smoke (on the curves or otherwise) the majority of slammed skateboard like and plasticlad tuner cars and I don't need a kidney belt to drive it. I can even hear my stereo, which is great by they way. Alpine head unit and Boston Acoustics speakers. Wow! Some tuner cars go like stink but it costs a bundle and they're barely streetable. In summary, I smile every time I get behind the wheel. I salute the folks who are interested and build the tuners but it is a hoot to see their faces when the Daytona rolls buy.
  • Nice to hear from someone who actually owns a new Charger.

    Which color did you get...screamin' yellow or go mango? :shades:
  • hercherc Posts: 8
    Hi John,

    Thanks. I got GoManGo! Looks even better in real life than in pictures. I read a story that the color is actually closer to the copper color used in 1970. The name for that color was "ComeGetMe Copper!" The article said that the Dodge folks wanted to use the original name but th elegal suits were worried about it drawing too much unwanted attention and sending the wrong message. Ah..Uh huh. :P
  • The new Dodge Meadowbrook, aka "Charger" is most definitely high tech, but style wise it sucks! Everything out of Dodge looks like a truck from the front. And yeah, there is no such thing as a 4 door Charger, and to true Dodge fanatics there never will be! You can stick any kind of label on any thing, means absolutely nothing! The best thing anyone can do with the new Meadowbrook is to scrap ALL of the sheet metal and slap a REAL Charger body on it!
    By the way I own several Dodges from a 1960 D-500, a ' 65 Coronet 500 426, a ' 68 Charger RT, a 71 Cuda Pak ( original) and a 78 Magnum. All, except the ' 78 will EASILY smoke the new Charger, 0 to 60 or in the quarter. No, they won't equal the gas mileage, but who cares? They are my toys, not my daily transportation appliance! Which is all the new so-called Charger is, an ugly appliance! It's a shame, cause Daimler could have done it right, but they chose to pander to the morons that wear their pants down around their Knees and their caps on sidewise!
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    is that 1960 D-500 one of the lighter Dart cars or is it a Polara/Matador? What engine do you have in that Magnum? I have a '79 New Yorker (basically a re-skinned B-body, although they called it the R) with a 360. It's hardly a screamer, but for what it is it ain't too bad.
  • john_324john_324 Posts: 974
    I certainly understand the dissapointment that the enthusiasts are experiencing with the new Charger, but try to see things from Chrysler's perspective. A Charger like the one you're describing simply will not sell enough to make it profitable.

    Consider the GM F-bodies (Camaro, Firebird)...these things were fire-breathing pony/muscle cars of the highest order. They were also a bargain (maybe not insurance-wise, but... ;) ) and were relatively cheap to make. Even with all of this going for them, GM axed them. Why? Not enough people were willing to buy them.

    Chrysler has to do the best it can in a very competitive marketplace. The Charger is a pretty good atttempt at balancing enthusiast concerns with the stuff that sells cars to the masses...

    And don't forget, we do get the SRT-8 version soon...it'll take any of the classic Chargers in the quarter mile, and actually can brake and turn too. Surely that's worth a least a little understanding for Chrysler...
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    that a 4-door Charger is an insult, well it could be a LOT worse!
  • hercherc Posts: 8
    I see coronet just doesn't get it. I had a number of Mopar muscle cars including a Road Runner, Cuda, and a Challenger. None of them would "smoke" a new Charger and I seriously doubt yours would either if they're stock. I know this because actually own a new Charger and old muscle. The new Charger will also actually go around curves as opposed to just a straight line. It will actually stop like a true sports sedan too! I also get as many or more thumbs up and compliments on my new Charger as I did with the old muscle. The folks who like the car range from young kids all the way to the old timers and all in between. The new Charger IS a muscle car and more.........and it does all of this on 87 octane pump gas. I'd suggest the whining be stopped and actually drive one. When you turn the wheel the car responds as opposed to having to wait until that slack from worn out recirculating ball steering in the old muscle catches up.

    Look, old muscle has it's place, but let me tell ya' sir, I just spent a day at the Mopar drags in Milan, MI and I saw Neon SRT4s running 12.5 seconds in the quarter. On the best day a bone stock 426 hemi MIGHT get close to these numbers. Most ran high 12s/low 13s and required 100 octane to do it. The "new" muscle at the strip was just as potent as the big blocks of yore, but the folks then drove the new ones home from the track getting 25 MPG while the "real" muscle cars were put on a trailer. The styling of a car doesn't appeal to everyone. That's the way it works. Chrysler has stated for the last several years that it is their goal to have polarizing style. Without it we'd all be driving Accords. For the record, my 2006 Daytona Charger beats my 1969 Road Runner in every aspect. Yes, even 0-60 and in the quarter mile. I love the way my Charger looks and so do a lot of other folks. They did a great job on this car as virtually every car mag I've read has indicated. Also keep in mind that the new Charger gives people a car not that much short of much more expensive cars from the likes of BMW and others. Lastly, I do not wear a hat sideways, I do not wear my pants down around my knees, and I wouldn't part with my Charger for any car on the planet right now. It's really that good. Especially when considering price. So stop complaining about what is truly a great car and wait for the 2009 Challenger if all your worried about is how many doors the darned thing has.
  • Hi: I bought my ' 60 Dart Phoenix convertible D-500 new when i was 19 years old. Yep i am an old fart that basically and admittedly hates most of the new offerings! Mainly because of the style, not the tech! Hard to tell a Caddy from a Crysler if you can't read the label! Now that I got that out of the way: My ' 60 came with the state police suspension and brakes and the 383 dual quad with a 3 speed Borg Warner T- 85 trans. The trans was a mistake! Ran it Super Stock Optional back in the day! switched to a ' 62 413 and aluminum 727 back in the ' 60's. Now it has a 440, still ram inducted, and is wicked fast, and with poly bushings, sway bar, etc. actually handles pretty damn good! Stock from the factory, on skinny bias plys, with a 3:23 gear it ran 15:30 at 92 mph using about half the quarter, first run ever. Best the 383 did, still with street tires, 9:00/ 14 Atlas Bucrons, but still stock 383 was 13:10 in the qtr. Not too bad, you new Charger fans, eh? This was driving to and from the strip too! My ' 65 i also special ordered new, again with the state police suspension, big brakes, 426 wedge and hd 727. I have tweaked it a little with a comp cam, better carb and manifold, and am running Nitto tires. It handles pretty good too. I drove it to the strip, unbuckled my grand kids, and with a full tank of gas, tools and spare tire and full ice chest in the trunk ran 12:10, 118 ,mph thru the mufflers. Ran a 12:50 in "Drive"! Not too shabby for "old junk" eh? With good tires and a little traction, I have no doubt it will run deep in the 11's, and still be totally streetable! And for all you nay sayers, the only reason old Hemis did not do better was and still is a matter of traction! They did not come with a computer controlled trans that gave optimum grip or todays tires! I know plenty of guys that own basically stock hemis that with modern rubber and very little else WILL smoke your new "Hemi" Charger! Big time! You win on the gas mileage though!
    My ' 78 Magnum is a GT with a two barrel 360 only. Has a pretty tall gear and is not a dragster, but looks good and will get 22mpg highway, even with the sad engine. One of these days............
    Just to be clear. I have no doubt that new tech can get the job done. I also have no doubt that in my opinion and the opinions of most of the people i cruise with, that Chrysler blew it. Other makers have no problem selling two door cars, including Japanese and German marques! Also, the 4 door Charger that Chrysler was showing a few years ago at least looked like what a Charger should look like despite 4 doors! Hey, face it. Most car guys consider Neons, Magnums, Chargers, and so'called Chrysler 300's as high tech, but Coyote ugly! I can afford to buy whatever i want. It won't be a "Charger" in the current style!
  • I said most of what I had to say in my other post, but I would like to specifically address a couple of points you made. First and foremost, I live in North West Indiana, close to the shores of beautiful Lake Michigan. If your ever in the area, and you see a white ' 60 Dart convt. or a dark metallic turquoise Coronet 500 cruising by, say hello, but don't try me out with your new ride unless you want to be disappointed, LOL! I can also be found most Friday nites when the weather is good at the local cruise in at the Target store just off SR 49 and SR 2 in Valparaiso, Indiana. There are usually upwards of 200 + really cool cars, all makes present. A really great free car show!
    Now then! You say I "don't get it"! Lets take a look at what I don't get. What does the new Charger have in common with the real Chargers? Not much. First, it has more in common, heritage wise, with ANY 4 door sedan from the early ' 50's on up. An old early Dodge 4 door sedan from the early ' 50's could be ordered with a real Hemi! Minus 50 + years of technology, a lot closer to the new Charger in concept! Hell, the only thing the new Charger has in common with the classics is the label. Same for the so-called new Hemi. Might be a great motor, but it is NOT a "Hemi"! Spark plugs in the middle of valve covers that shout "Hemi", do not a "Hemi" make! Hemispherical combustion chambers are what make a "Hemi" a "Hemi"! Something the new "Hemi" does NOT have!
    What really ticks me off though is that for years loyal Dodge fans have BEGGED Dodge for a RWD performance car to compete with cars like the Mustang. We even begged that the Charger concept car of a few years ago would be built, 4 doors or no! Instead, Dieter and the rest of the powers that be at Daimler-Chrysler basically spit in our eye and told us, for all intents and purposes, "to hell with what YOU want, you'll buy what we decide you'll buy!" Guess what. I don't think so! Sadly, some former Dodge owners have jumped to Ford, buying Mustangs since Dodge won't give them what they want.
    Seems Ford has no problem selling Mustangs. Around here, new "Chargers" are not exactly flying out the dealers doors! I have actually only seen one on the road so far. As a local Dodge Dealerships owner said: "It's a shame. It's really a great car. Too bad Dodge didn't listen to their loyal customer base"!
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    actually a "pent-roof" design? One thing that think is kinda cool about the new Hemi is that Chrysler chose to make it a 345 cubic inch, which was the displacement of the '57 DeSoto Adventurer's Hemi. The '57 Adventurer was also the first mass produced passenger car to offer 1 hp per cubic inch as standard equipment. Chevy offered 1 hp per cubic in on the 283 in '57, but only as an option, and Chrysler actually broke that barrier, with a 355 hp 354 Hemi in '56, but again it was an optional engine. For some reason though, Chevy advertising was all over their 1 hp per cubic inch, while DeSoto advertising seemed to side-step it, like they were ashamed of it or something!

    Oh, one thing the new Charger DOES have in common with the old ones...I think it has the same 4.5" on 5 wheel bolt pattern! :P (at least, the LH cars did and the minivans do, so I'd imagine that the LX cars do, too..)
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    Coronet, do you have any electronic pics of any of your cars? They sound really cool. I've always loved the 1960 Dodges, and even the '78-79 Magnums were way cool in my book!
  • Actually I am amazed i do as much on the internet as I do, being the old dinosaur that I am. Photography has never been my strong suit. Maybe I can get my son to post some pics. Right now he has digital pics of the new motor I built for the ' 60. He made up some posters of it. That's the 440 I mentioned, when it was still on the engine stand. He could also take some pics of the ' 65 and probably send em out. My other son Tim is a painter by profession and as we speak is getting ready to re shoot the " 60. Years ago, I removed all of the badging, leaded in the seams, and shot it with the whitest white I could. My son finally convinced me to put it back to stock, ergo, it will be shot the original Satin White, and all of the badges, even the ugly hood badge will go back on. He promised me I would get it back in two weeks! If you don't mind, send me your email address and I will send you some pics as soon as I can get my other son to do it!
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I read a lot of critics about the looks of the Charger.I will admit that when I first saw the Charger I had the same reaction.What is Chrysler thinking.Given time it grew on me like the 300 did.Now that I own one They couldnt have done a better job.This car is awesome.Best riding and handling car I owned.Iv'e had mopars my whole life as well as a mechanic that worked on tons of police cars.I wish we had cars like that back then.For the people who dont like the looks ,dont look at them and let the ones who own them enjoy them like I am.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    sorry I didn't get back to ya sooner, but my email address is in my profile. BTW, if anybody's interested, here's a few pics of one of my old relics. And yeah, it's got a Hemi! :P
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    congratulations on your purchase. I think the Charger, even in base and SXT form, gives you a lot of car for the money. At one point I had my heart set on a Hemi, but with the way fuel prices have gotten I've reconsidered. Plus I figure I'll drive my old Intrepid until it dies, and try to save up some more money. I'd definitely consider a Charger when that time comes. And the Intrepid's up to around 112,000 fairly troublefree miles, so it's beyond the potential of ever pissing me off enough to swear off Chrysler products...I figure anything that breaks from here on out I can attribute to the car getting up in age and miles! :shades:
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    Thanks for your comment.The car I traded in was a 2002 Intrepid SXT.With only 10000 on it.I had a lot of talking to convince my wife I needed the Charger.I loved and enjoyed my Trep ,but glad I have the Charger.I saw your pixs and It looks great, i love old Mopars.The dart looked good also.Take care and thanks again.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    that's kind of ironic...every once in awhile I'll see an Intrepid SXT pop up at a local used car lot, and I'll think about trading in my '00 for it! It seems like every single one ends up being that Inferno Red. I guess it would be kinda silly though, to trade in a car that's still running fine for a newer, but still used, version of the same thing. Plus, I'm probably at the point of no return with regards to value. At 112,000 miles I probably should just run it into the ground.

    Glad you liked the pics! That Dart has around 338,000 miles on it and is a little roughed up. Common sense is telling me to get rid of it, but when it comes to me and old cars, common sense usually doesn't win out... :blush:
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,683
    you are going to buy a charger, don't buy a white one. trust me on this. :(
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    My SXT happens to be stone white.My wife wanted a black one till she saw it.I
    had a stone white 02 Intrepid SXT that got a lot of looks because it was white.IN Arizona white's the car to have.I must say MY Charger looks better than any other color I've seen.But then again thats my opinion,just like yours.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    You said that you keep looking at the Trep SXTs.If you drive one ,you will see a big differance than your trep you have now.I had one of the mechanics at the dealer brought back my car and said he drove a lot of treps ,but that felt like no trep.
    I think you'll like it.What ever you decide good luck. :)
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,968
    with white? My supervisor has a 300 Touring in that white they call "Cool Vanilla", and I think it's attractive. I'm actually a sucker for green, so if I were to get a Charger or 300, it would probably be in that Magnesium color.

    The only thing I really don't like about white is that I'm a bit tired of it, I guess. I've had my white Dart now for over 13 years. And every single car my stepdad has owned has been white. Still, I could see how white would have its advantages out in the desert! I've also pretty much sworn off grays and silvers, because I've had too many of them now. In addition to my silver Intrepid I've had a silver '89 Gran Fury copcar, a gray '85 LeSabre that my grandma gave me, and a two-tone gray over silver '86 Monte that my Mom gave me.

    Xtec, a few years ago I found a 2002 Intrepid R/T at the dealer where I bought my Intrepid, and I fell in love. Once I drove it though, I hate to say it, but I wasn't THAT impressed with it. It was definitely quicker than my Trep, and better optioned out, but the more thought about it, the more I started having second thoughts. One thing I didn't like about it was that on acceleration, it almost felt like the tranny was keeping the engine from realizing its full potential. On the 2.7 it does that to a small extent, trying to upshift too quickly, but on this R/T, it also felt really slow to shift between gears. Now it did have around 35,000 miles on it, so it might have just been driven hard, but then I drove a 2005 Magnum SXT, and the tranny did the same thing. I think they've phased that 4-speed tranny out in all of the LX cars except for the 2.7 Magnum/300, so most of them these days should have the 5-speed tranny.

    Another thing that made me a bit jittery was getting into that much debt again. The price on this R/T was $15,995. They had come down from around $17,995, so I guess it had been on their lot for awhile. This was in September, 2003. At first they offered me $3500 for my Trep, which had around 86,000 miles on it at the time. However, they upped that offer to what I owed on the car, which at the time was something like $4722. So that would've put me back into debt again. Another thing that bothered me is that they couldn't give me a straight answer as to the warranty on the car. Chrysler played around with their warranties some in 2002, so some models have the 3/36K bumper-to-bumper, but some have the powertrain part of that bumped out to 7/70K. If this thing had the good warranty, I would've been more tempted. Another thing that made me reconsider was that they didn't have any maintenance records for the car (supposedly the previous owner was a mechanic's wife...yeah, aren't they all? :P ) Plus, I remembered that around that mileage was when my '00 started needing a few things, like new tires (I actually wore mine out at 30K) new front brake pads (39K), the door seals started shrinking up after less than two years, and the thermostat housing started leaking a bit and was replaced around 51K, same as the rear pads. Now maybe the 3.5 had a different thermostat housing, so that might not have been an issue.

    Still, thinking about it all was enough to make me just keep the car I had! And that turned out to be for the best, because now it's paid off, and November will mark my 12th month without a car payment!
  • john_324john_324 Posts: 974
    Yeah, what's wrong with white? I've seen a couple, and I think it's a good color for the new Charger.

    Kinda reminds me of a modern version of Kowalsky's Challenger from Vanishing Point... ;)
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