- Automotive Makes & Models
Dodge Charger 1966
The Charger was built originally to fut between the Ford Mustang's thorough bred pony and the Ford Thunderbird's luxurious insides. The Dodge Charger was to be a mid market car that offered both of these car markets in one and would appeal to a wider market for that reason. The car was designed by Carl 'Cam' Cameron who was a relatively decorated designer at the time. The first production care came out in 1966 with much of the cars body solely to appeal to the muscle car crowd. There were some features that did however show that dodge has spent some money trying to make sure that the car had some new unique sales points such as the fully rotating headlights that rotated with the whole grill. This would create the sense of the car coming alive and a present surprise for the car owners. Inside was a wood grain steering wheel which complemented the luxurious yet sport feel to be found inside.
The interior featured four individual bucket seats two in front and rear with most of the middle of the car covered by a console that stretched from the front to the back of the car. There were courtesy interior lights which complimented the premium trim that came along with it , vinyl upholster and a electro-luminated dashboard were all there to give a sense that this was a new and improved car.
When production started in 1966 the models that were available were only available in v8 straight six engines that produced large amounts of power and torque. The 1966 charger was also the first U.S production vehicle to offer a spoiler and the charger driven by David Pearson also went on to win the NASCAR Grand National Championship.
After a 2 year ride the Charger was once brought back to the drawing board and was redesigned by Richard Sias, the 68 charger was the first in the line of models to feature a RT option and the elusive Hemi engines that powered other Chrysler based cars.
Manufactured by Chrysler Corp from 1966 to 1978 this was and still is one of the iconic muscle car of the era. The body style was a 2 door coupe with much of the interior very minimal to save weight and allow for fast take offs that the muscle cars were known for. The Front to rear drive train layout was text book , however the body shape meant there had to be a lot of reinforcement to the top of the car as there was not much support to the roof. Making the cars chassis stern created a lot of bulk and even though the monster that was under the hood was sizable the numbers did not impress as much as they should have. Many of these cars today are highly modified because of this reason and they are used to drag race.
New vs old
The 1969 Dodge Charger is one of the if not the most famous of muscle cars in most people memories. This car has been featured in multiple auto shows and has seen a lot of camera time from the like of the TV series The Dukes of Hazard. Another movie which made the car infamous was The Fast & Furious first installment which featured the car in a drag race.
After launching the car into the racing scene many of the drivers complained that the car was not aerodynamic enough for some of the high speed tracks. There were complaints that the car felt like it was driving on ice because of the nose which actually created lift. After this designers went back to the drawing board they released the Charger Daytona which had a much more aerodynamic profile to the body and the iconic huge spoiler.This car is also set to be featured in the new Fast & Furious 6 film.