I have a weakness for a good American muscle car, the Challenger is no exception. Dodge has tapped into the formula for blending design, function and fun…to make a quintessentially American form of accessible luxury.
For me, it’s a love-love story. The sound, the feel, the drive experience and the ability to transform my day with the push of a button make the Challenger the drivable stuff of legend.
Is It Really Last Call?
Well, yes, the bell is ringing. It is clear that the countdown has begun as the automotive world dances toward new sources of power and of the OEMs grapple with what comes next.
That being said, when Dodge issued their “Last Call” last year, I felt the little pang of loss of what could be (and quite possibly would be) lost to the new age of electrification. That fear might be unfounded as it turns out that they’ve created a pretty stellar concept, fully-EV Charger Daytona Banshee, (we got a peek at it at the Chicago Auto Show and it is stunning).
SHOUT OUT TO THE LOVERS
Perfect for the iconic muscle car lovers, especially those that have been bit by the nostalgia bug, it is time to meet the first of 7 ‘Last Call’ Special Edition models. They are limited editions based on the concepts and cult-favorites of the past.
Luckily, we got to drive the first one, the 2023 Dodge Challenger Shakedown.
Unmistakably Dodge, viscerally engaging and thoughtfully designed, the 2023 Challenger Shakedown is a limited edition and collector’s model from the jump. It’s one of 1000 scheduled for production… and definitely, worth it.
I heard the rumble as it roared to life, and it arrived on one of those days when Texas was all blue skies and sunshine. Polished high gloss black paint contrasts with smooth matte black striping and the bright accent of a distinctive Shakedown red stripe bisects the hood and body drawing the eye and reminding you from first glance that driving is supposed to be a pleasurable experience. It gets to be fun, and it almost begs you to get in. I did.
The seats cradle your body and let you sit comfortably. All buttons and knobs are within easy reach and the car performs exactly as expect.
It’s exhilarating and just plain fun.
It reminds me of the pleasures of driving, the thrill of accelerating, letting the wind whip through the car and power of well-made vehicle to elevate a day and experience.
CONCEPT TO REALITY
Based on the 2016 SEMA concept Dodge Challenger Shakedown, this one is a Widebody R/T Scatpack, but follows with the same sharp, good looks with the striking black-and-red color scheme throughout. Fine details like crosshatched red stitching, Alcantara seating, smooth red seatbelts, pebbled leather, tactile textures and last call badging under the hood elevate the experience and make this last call sing.
Peep the “392” fender graphics, the bold spoiler badging, bright red Brembo brakes and wide Slingshot wheels. It a bold signal that it’s designed for more than sitting and looking pretty, but rather to perform like the beastly champion that it is.
A MACHINE MADE FOR USE
Built with drivers in mind, there are dozens of reasons why the Challenger has become a beloved vehicle for drivers and enthusiasts alike.
It’s empowered with 807HP and 707lb.ft of torque for a controlled yet powerful ride with the balanced stopping power to keep the experience fun. The combo of sensors and cameras designed for track and street up the comfort level and give you the data to enhance your abilities. It’s connected — the award-winning UConnect5 system allows you to connect to your phone and music with ease and minimal fiddling. All combined, the Challenger Shakedown is end of an era in the best possible way. It blends that love of a brilliant ICE with the updated tech, DNA-coded fun and heritage of can-do drivers and make-it-happen ingenuity.
HOW TO GET IT?
Available now, you can use the Dodge Garage to find it and its siblings. You’ll also be able to stay up to date on what’s new and next from Dodge. Starting at just over $30k, you can choose from a variety of models and trims to create your own piece of Dodge Challenger heritage.
As always, if you need a referral to a trusted dealer or have questions, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org