Challenger

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2008 Dodge Challenger Overview

To say there's a lot of anticipation for Chrysler's new retro Dodge Challenger would be a bit of an understatement. You can almost see the puddles of man-drool collecting in the corners of Internet chat forums. Rumors have it that Dodge will very likely release its 1970s-inspired Challenger sometime in 2008, and early buzz and photos show that Dodge has done everything right. This car might actually make it cool to own a Dodge again. The only colors available for the 2008 model year will be black, silver, and Challenger Orange (see pictures).

After seeing the success Ford had with its redesigned Mustang, Chrysler went to work on designing a concept car based on its original Challenger. This concept car first appeared at the 2006 International Auto Show. Built on the same platform as the Dodge Charger, but two inches shorter, four inches wider, and sitting lower to the ground, the Challenger concept car features a 6.1-liter Hemi V8 paired with a 6-speed manual transmission. Like its 1970s inspiration, it has 425 horsepower, but it's even quicker off the line, with a claimed 0-to-60 time of 4.5 seconds and a max speed of 174 mph. It's likely the 6.1 Hemi will only be an option on the 2008 Challenger, and some of us will just have to settle for the mere standard 5.7-liter Hemi V8 engine.

Early pictures reveal horizontal taillights and four round headlights, with race-car striping on the hood. The word "cool" doesn't do it enough justice. If you need any more convincing, go out and rent a copy of "Vanishing Point" or "Gone in 60 Seconds," or check out old "Mannix" reruns on Nick at Night and get ready to welcome back the Dodge Challenger. Now, excuse me while I grab a towel to wipe the drool off my computer screen.

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