Could Dodge Bring Back the Challenger Convertible?
What happened to the Dodge Challenger convertible? Chevrolet sells the Corvette Stingray as a convertible, and many would consider that high-performance car the competition. Sadly, Dodge hasn’t been that big on offering the Challenger a convertible body for some time. It was most notably known during the first generation of the Dodge Challenger, having debuted back in 1969 and lasting only a few years once the 1973 oil crisis hit. After that, the second generation wouldn’t;’t debut for nearly a decade. In the third-generation, over a decade old trailing back to 2018, the Dodge Challenger still has no convertible body in sight. The best way for a consumer to get a convertible body these days would be to send their Challenger to a body shop to convert the coupe. With all Dodge is doing to make 2019 one of the last best years for the high-performance muscle car, one would think re-introducing a convertible option would be on the list.
Let’s face it. Ever since Dodge announced that the automaker would soon go electric was a bit of a reality check. With automakers working on the next most fuel-efficient vehicle and alternative fuel becoming ever popular in the auto market, the fuel-burning high-horsepower SRT powertrain lineup of the Dodge Challenger (and the Dodge Charger) have an expiration date. Early on in 2019, Dodge announced that an electric vehicle, or at the very least a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle will be introduced to the lineup very soon. Mike Manley, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, told The Detroit News that the current generation of these muscle cars won’t enter 2020 with the same high-octane engines they’re known for today.
2020 is right around the corner, so honestly, we’re excited and a little anxious. What could this possibly mean for the beloved muscle car? It’s possible that the next Dodge Challenger will get an electric boost with from the new 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine from FCA or even the new turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine from FCA, able to outperform the Pentastar V6 in either capacity, 3.2-liters or 3.6-liters. Horsepower is one thing but torque is what really powers the wheels – maybe a smaller engine won’t be so bad if Dodge also takes a look at the mild-hybrid system, eTorque.
Regardless of the new powertrains, there’s still the convertible body question. Will we ever get it back? So far, there aren’t any news pieces on that being a possibility, but let’s look at what Dodge has done for the Challenger for 2019.
1 – The 2019 Dodge Challenger now comes with a new dual-snorkel hood exclusively built into the design of the new 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and SRT Hellcat Redeye. Dodge hasn’t given the Challenger much of an upgrade for several years.
2 – The Redeye. Dodge didn’t have to release a new model for 2019. After the flop of the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, we didn’t think Dodge would make the same mistake. Luckily, they didn’t. In fact, the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is the SRT Demon we deserved. Made with Demon parts but still keeping things under control the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye keeps the same 6.2-litre HEMI V8 engine under the hood, but it is now able to generate 797 horsepower and 707 lb-ft of torque.
3 – Three words – SRT. Hellcat. Widebody. Not only has Dodge made the Widebody package for the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, SRT Hellcat Redeye, and even offered the Widebody package on the 2019 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack trim. Dodge has also recently revealed the 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody.
With all these final additions and upgrades for possibly the last straight up gasoline powered SRT muscle car, one would think Dodge would bring back an oldie but a goodie. Here’s hoping the Dodge Challenger convertible is in the mix. Who knows? It might be the perfect match for a hybrid electric Dodge vehicle. Think about it, and then join the discussion on Aventura Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram social media.