Oakland, Maryland, United States
Being in business for 100 years is a HUGE milestone, so we hope Dodge has more in mind to celebrate its centennial than just a special edition package for the 2014 Charger and Challenger. Called the 100th Anniversary Edition package, this collection of cosmetic enhancements will be available in limited quantities for both cars at a cost of $2,500.
Ordering a Charger or Challenger with the 100th Anniversary Edition package means starting with either a V6-powered SXT Plus or V8-powered R/T Plus model. They can each be ordered in many colors, but only the High-Octane Red Pearl Coat above is an anniversary exclusive. Each car also comes with an anniversary-exclusive set of 20-inch, five-spoke wheels with what Dodge calls "Granite Crystal pockets," a texture that's also mirrored on each car's grille.
Of course, there are commemorative badges galore affixed to the exterior of each car, including "Dodge Est. 1914" fender badges and "100" logos on the center caps of each wheel. The styling theme of each car's interior is a bit more interesting, with Dodge designers trying to evoke "the patina and machinist legacy of John and Horace Dodge," the company's founders. To that end, the leather interior can be had in Molten Red or Foundry Black Nappa, and each features a custom cloud overprint that makes the hide look like a working man's dirty dungarees. Designers also used brass-colored accent stitching on the interior's leather trim pieces, and affixed more "Dodge Est. 1914" badges to the front seat backs and floor mats. We do like the flat-bottomed steering wheel, and the Challenger 100th Anniversary Edition gets exclusive white gauges faces and the Charger black. The "100" on each car's speedometer is also highlighted in red.
The Viper wouldn't be the Viper if it wasn't the most powerful model under the Chrysler umbrella. But with the arrival of the Hellcat engine in the Dodge Charger and Challenger, the Viper has fallen behind in the bragging rights department: where the new supercharged V8 produces 707 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque, the naturally aspirated V10 offers "only" 640 hp and 600 lb-ft - gargantuan output figures by almost any other standard, but crucially behind on the SRT power scale. Conner Avenue is going to have to do something about that.
Although the Hellcat's engine reportedly won't fit under the Viper's hood, SRT is now rumored to have another trick up its sleeve: supercharge the existing V10. According to the Pentastar performance enthusiasts at allpar.com, Chrysler has already taken delivery of the first such prototype engines so that it can begin the process of fitting it into an upgraded Viper.
The spooled ten-pot is tipped to produce around 800 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque. More than that and the Viper's drivetrain, chassis and bodywork would have to be substantially reworked. Though beefier transmissions are available, fitting them would reportedly set off a domino-game of changes required to handle the added torque. Which may be something Chrysler would be prepared to do for the next-generation model, but in the meantime, 800 hp could prove enough to put the Viper back atop the Mopar performance ladder where it belongs, and give it an edge against the new Corvette Z06 to rekindle sales.
Dodge has just confirmed that it will be bringing its newest Dart variant, the Dart GT, to Detroit next week, but we're still in the dark about when we'll see a truly hotted-up SRT4 version. But now, by way of the rumormill anyway, we've got at least one proposed, potentially Dodge-based rendering to light our way.
Seen here is what would appear to be a design sketch of the SRT4 Dart. Obviously the image that has surfaced is of rather low-resolution, but there's at least some evidence to support that it may be legitimate. In the original picture, one can just make out the name Tim Doyle in the lower right corner. As it turns out, Tim Doyle's name is also watermarked on the final design image for the 2011 Dodge Durango Citadel Black & Tan, a model that was shown at SEMA in 2010.
Of course, even if this really is the work of Doyle, there's nothing to say that this image isn't one of a great many potential looks for the future SRT4. In fact, the departure of the cross-hair grille from the Dodge's nose seems like it could be a hard sell, though we do, naturally, dig the sleek hood scoop and the bulked up wheel/tire combination.