You have got to hand it to Daimler Chrysler, the company behind the successful launch this summer of the 2006 Dodge Charger: the car hearkens back to the glory days of pure Dodge power while successfully incorporating the latest technologies from the German American automaker. One of the biggest names in the muscle car era has returned with a vengeance: the Dodge Charger.
When Daimler and Chrysler merged in 1998, many Mopar fans felt that an important era in American automobile manufacturing had abruptly come to an end. Indeed, the venerable maker of Chrysler, Plymouth, Dodge, and Jeep vehicles would no longer be controlled exclusively from their Detroit base. Instead, the German manufacturer of luxury Mercedes automobiles would set the course and steer the company in the direction they wanted it to go. Or so it seemed.
Fortunately, what started out as a rocky marriage between a pair of perceived unequals has resulted in offspring that are, well, cool! It took several years for the relationship to get on track and that became evident with the release of the Chrysler 300M and Dodge Magnum vehicles. Both cars have performed very strongly since their release in 2004 and have literally set the ground work for a successful launch of the Dodge Charger earlier this year. The Charger is based on the same platform of the 300M/Magnum and was originally meant to have been a sedan version of the Magnum. Instead, Dodge gave the car its own personality.
Alright, enough of the background. Let’s take a look at what this baby has to offer:
Yes, the Dodge Charger is equipped with all the bells and whistles found in today’s hotrods and then some. The car comes in one body style a four door, five passenger sedan while earlier renditions of the Charger nameplate were two door fastback coupes. Still, for a sedan the car has very sleek and racy edges and a grill that is meant to intimidate.
Press coverage of the Charger has been highly favorable. Indeed, Automotive Magazine had this to say about the Charger:
The 2006 Dodge Charger is the latest in a remarkably long line of certain hits from the Chrysler Group. The new Charger has all the necessary ingredients, from an impressive line of engines to state-of-the-art electronic technology to the right mix of suspension and wheel-and-tire componentry to stand-out styling. So what if it isn't a two-door coupe? We like it and think Dodge will sell every one it can build.
Naturally, this is the type of press that Daimler Chrysler has hoped for. Despite gas prices in excess of $2.50 per gallon the automaker should be able to sell the Charger to those with money to spare and with a desire to relive 1960s muscle car glory.
It has been a long time since American sedans have been competitive with their Japanese and European counterparts; the 2006 Dodge Charger will cause its competitors to stand up and take notice. A good thing indeed!
Matthew Keegan is the owner of a successful web design and marketing company based in North Carolina, USA. He manages several sites including the Corporate Flight Attendant Community at http://www.corporateflyer.net and the Aviation Employment Board at http://www.aviationemploymentboard.net