10 reasons why every gearbox should drive an old Dodge Challenger

Cleverness is an American car manufacturer that specializes in making high-performance vehicles. They started making brilliant muscle cars like the Charger in the late ’60s and have continued to do so to this day, though they’ve expanded to build high-performance SUVs like the Durango SRT Hellcat and even borrow other car brands like Jeep their ridiculously powerful V8s to put in everyday cars.


However, one of their most acclaimed creations is the original Dodge Challenger, and we’re here to tell you more about why it was such a memorable car, and why you need to drive it before it becomes one of the most expensive classic cars Dodge has ever made. has ever made. produced.

10/10 The Challenger Legacy

Via: Mecum Auctions

Production of the Challenger started in 1970 and there was also a second generation until 1983. After that, the Challenger name remained extinct for 25 years, and then the modern Challenger made its appearance.

Dodge-Challenger-SRT-Hellcat---Front-2
Via NetCar Show

Technically, we are still in the third generation of the Challenger, albeit almost 15 years old. Countless different variations of the Challenger have been made like the Demon, but they all still embody the muscle car-like the first Challenger to hit the table.

Related: These Are The 10 Sickest Dodge Challengers We’ve Ever Seen

9/10 426 cubic centimeters of pure power

1971 Dodge Challenger RT engine bay
Via: Legendary Motorcar Company

Over 10 different engine options were available throughout the Dodge Challenger’s first generation, and of the bunch the most powerful was the 426 cubic inch (7.0 liter) Chrysler Hemi engine found in the Challenger R/T.

1970 Dodge Challenger RT, orange, side profile
Via: Mecum

Not only was it massive in size, but it also had a hilarious amount of power to aid its movement. This Hemi V8 produced an incredible 425 horsepower and an even more ridiculous 490 lb-ft of torque. Remember, this was the year 1970 and cars at that time struggled to produce more than 100 horsepower.

Related: The Challenger and Charger will lose their V8s in future move by Dodge

8/10 Real Muscle Car feeling

1974 Dodge Challenger
Via: Mecum.com

For one, the feeling of a muscle car is excellent and for the other it’s terrible. Muscle cars were never meant for cornering as a hot knife would cut through butter, they were focused on one thing only – straight line speed.

Dodge Challenger from 1970
Via Mecum Auctions

So even though the Charger weighed about 4,000 lbs and cornered like a clumsy lumberjack, it had a ridiculous amount of power that allowed it to post a 0-60 time of 5.1 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 13.6 seconds – like a real muscle car should.

7/10 Topless fun

1970 Dodge Hemi Challenger RT Convertible Trimmed (1)
Via mecum.com

New muscle cars rarely come with an optional retractable roof, well, some still do, like the Mustang, but the new Challenger has yet to be offered with a retractable roof. Back in the day, muscle cars were all over the top, and they actually came in convertible body styles and some outlandish colors that made sure all eyes were on you.

Green 1970 Dodge Hemi Challenger Convertible
Via mecum.com

It’s worth noting that some creative minds have gone to great lengths to convert their new Challengers into convertibles, and we think they look, if we’re being honest, really cool.

6/10 One of the best Muscle Cars ever

Orange-1970-Ford-Mustang-Boss-302-Fastback---Front-Right-Angle-1
Mecum Auctions

The late ’60s and early ’70s were the peaks for the American muscle car. Stunning examples of this were cars like the Ford Mustang Boss 302, the Chevy Chevelle SS and of course the Dodge Challenger R/T in particular.

Chevrolet Chevelle SS-454 from 1970
Via Bring-a-Trailer

This was an incredibly competitive space, and the muscle cars were at an all-time high, and even Dodge is still creating competition for itself with the Charger, but overall the Challenger’s sheer power was more than enough to rank as one of the greatest muscle cars of all time.

Related: Mopar Madness: A 1970s Dodge Charger, Super Bee, and Challenger Are Spectacular Barn Finds

5/10 Interior fit for a king

1970 Dodge Challenger RT interior from the back of the driver's compartment
Via: Mecum

Since the Challenger weighed the same as an elephant, there was no doubt that it would also have a luxurious interior. This may not mean state of the art technology or even a smooth ride, but all the materials used were of the highest quality, which is why you rarely see the cockpits of these cars in a sorry state.

blue 1970 dodge challenger interior
Via: Mecum Auctions

Not only were they built to last, but they were also highly customizable, and had the same extravagant options as the exterior paint – just check out the blue interior of this 1970s Challenger, pictured above.

4/10 Vanishing point hero car

Vanishing Point 1970 Dodge Challenger Front View
through IMCDB

The movie “Vanishing Point” was released to the public in the year 1971 when the Dodge Challenger was only on the market for a few years, but due to its increasing popularity, it earned itself the title of playing the hero car in this movie.

Dodge Challenger - Back Quarter
Through classic cars

The particular Challenger they used was a beautiful 1970 white R/T with a 440 Magnum hidden under the hood, and the location of the vehicles used for the production of the film…well, that’s an interesting story .

3/10 Intimidating by nature

Dodge Challenger RT black from 1971
Via: Barret-Jackson.com

Muscle cars always have a subtle sense of aggression, almost like a calm businessman in his suit drinking a glass of whiskey on the rocks and staring into the abyss. Of course you don’t want trouble with a man like that, and you wouldn’t want that with an old Challenger, especially an eclipsed one like the one pictured above.

1971 Dodge Challenger RT
Via: Barret-Jackson.com

It was a 7.0-liter Hemi V8 that was powerful enough to handle even some supercars of the era, such as the Lamborghini Countach. Oh, and most importantly, the rumbling sound of his V8 engine only instilled more fear in the hearts of all opponents.

2/10 Still relevant today

1970 Dodge Challenger Burnout
Via: YouTube @ Joakim Gustafsson

When you compare the sheer statics of the old Challenger to modern sports cars, it’s amazing how far we’ve come, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that this classic Dodge can’t keep up with modern sports cars.

1971 Dodge Challenger Restomod Trimmed (1)
Via mecum.com

As we’ve said before, the Challenger was able to set a quarter-mile time of 13.6 seconds, and compared to more modern cars it’s a perfect match against a new Ford Mustang GT.

1/10 There will never be anything like it again

1970 Dodge Challenger RT
Via: Mecum Auctions

We know it’s cliché to say that new cars will never be able to recapture the personality of an old car, but with regard to the old Challenger, there’s more to it than just safety and emissions regulations.

1970 Dodge Hemi Challenger RT Convertible 2 cropped
Via mecum.com

The first iteration of the Challenger was offered with a convertible roof and an endless amount of flamboyant paint choices, it handled excruciatingly shoddy and was only good in a straight line, but that’s exactly what made it so special. It wasn’t the perfect all-rounder, but it made for a damn good muscle car, and it breaks our hearts to see we never get to experience that again.

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