5 Best Redesigns in Dodge History
Whether it's the automaker's muscle cars like the 2015 Dodge Charger or its rugged trucks like the RAM 1500, Dodge has always had a signature style that helps it stand out from the pack. With bold lines, angular design and polished steel, you can always recognize a Dodge, no matter what the stylistic conventions of the era were.
Over the years, Dodge has worked to improve on its own excellence and has taken to redesigning one of the vehicles in its line, resulting in some stunning new models. From the 1969 Dodge Charger to the 2015 Dodge Durango, we've rounded up five of the best redesigns in Dodge history for you to feast your eyes upon:
1992 Dodge Dakota
The Dodge Dakota has been the every man's truck since it was introduced in 1987. It offers the power of a full-size pickup truck without the huge size that some can find cumbersome or overwhelming. Yet with its redesign in 1992, the Dodge Dakota became even more powerful, and it enjoyed its best sales year yet.
Dodge began the redesign process in 1991 by adding a 5.2-liter V8 engine with 170 horsepower to its regular production, and it modified the body to include a longer nose with more space behind the grille.
In 1992, Dodge introduced the Magnum series with redesigned V6 and V8 engines. Both had improved cylinder heads and a more advanced fuel-injection system that helped increased horsepower. The 3.9-liter V6 had 180 horsepower, and the 5.2-liter V8 had 230 horsepower. The new engines could challenge the Dodge Shelby and the Mustang GT in power and performance. Road tests clocked the V8 at 0 to 60 mph in 7.9 seconds.
1996 Viper GTS Coupe
The Dodge Viper has a flashy, distinctive style that turns heads on the road. The 1996 Viper GTS Coupe headlined the second generation of Vipers, and it improved on both the style and the engineering of the original Viper RT/10 roadster.
The GTS Coupe's bold style included a duck tail rear spoiler and smooth, flaring lines. The exterior was Shelby Blue with white racing stripes on the hood, roof and spoiler. Smaller features that made less of an impact on the look but more of an impact on user experience included exterior door handles and roll-up side windows.
Some new features for the 1996 Viper GTS Coupe included a new exhaust system to cut down on emissions, as well as the roar that made Vipers less than neighborhood-friendly. OBD-II emissions controls were added, as were dual airbags and aluminum links for the suspension.
The Viper GTS Coupe's lighter-weight frame also made it faster and easier to handle. A production model was even used as a pacer for the 1996 Indianapolis 500.
1969 Dodge Charger
Looks like them Dodge boys are at it again. When they redesigned the Charger for 1969, they not only made what many consider to be the best-looking Charger in the history of the line, but they also made television history. The 1969 Dodge Charger was immortalized onscreen as The General Lee, the car driven by the mischievous Duke brothers in "The Dukes of Hazzard."
The design changes between 1968 and 1969 were minimal, but they were enough to make an impact. Starting with the front grille, the previously undivided space was interrupted by a gray centerpiece. Heading around the back, the taillights were designed to look like hockey sticks. It retained the long, boxy body and the soft, leather interior.
Under the hood, the 1969 Charger got a 3.7-liter engine with 145 horsepower. It didn't have enough power to match the bulky Dodge, so some found the performance to be lagging -- though you couldn't tell the Duke brokers that! However, special models such as the Charger S/E got more power to create a more sporty ride.
Dodge even created special 1969 Chargers for racing, such as the Charger 500 and the Charger Daytona. Buddy Baker was behind the wheel of a Charger Daytona when it became the first stock car to turn a lap at more than 200 miles per hour.
2008 Dodge Challenger
When Dodge introduced the Challenger in 1970, muscle cars were nearing their fall from favor. The first generation had its run through 1974, but sales continued to decline. A Japanese produced version was introduced in 1978, but it had only fair success and was discontinued in 1983.
When Dodge revived the Challenger in 2008, it created the best version yet. The new Challenger was styled to look like the first generation, but it has some modern upgrades. The body weighs about 500 pounds more, and the body is bigger, including a larger wheelbase, bigger wheels and a lengthier profile. Other features include airbags and stability control.
The 2008 Challenger has a 6.1-liter V8 Hemi engine with 425 horsepower that can take the car from 0 to 60 in just 5.1 seconds. Though the car may weigh more than the original, it feels lighter and handles better. The car can come to an emergency stop in 115 feet.
2015 Dodge Durango
Despite its large size, the seven-passenger 2015 Dodge Durango is both powerful and easy to maneuver. The 2015 model has a 3.6-liter V6 engine with an eight-speed automatic transmission, but you can choose an optional 5.7-liter V8 engine for even more power for heavy loads.
The interior has received a lot of updates, including optional red leather upholstery, an 8.4-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system, and three-zone climate control.
Safety features include emergency braking assist, dusk-sensing headlights, stability and traction control, a post-collision safety system, and brake drying.
The 2015 Dodge Durango sells for about $33,000, and it is worth every penny. It's the perfect family vehicle, combing form and function in one safe ride.
Dodge has a long history serving a diverse market, including those looking for family cars and those who just want to have a bit of fun on the road. While it has always set out to create a great automobile, it has constantly striven to improve on its designs, and it has done so with some of these standouts.
Whether you are looking for a new 2015 Dodge Durango, Charger, or an older Dodge that left is mark on history, you may be able to find it at Miami Lakes Dodge. We sell new and previously owned Dodge models of all types, and our friendly representatives will help you find the right Dodge to fit your needs.