Could This Be The 2017 Challenger Hellcat SRT?


2018-Dodge-Challenger-Carscoops-2

Dodge recently updated the Challenger around the time the Hellcat was unleashed on an unsuspecting automotive public, so we don’t think the full re-design is in the offing next month or anything. However, that doesn’t stop would-be automotive designers on the internet from throwing their couple of cents out there as to the vision for the next generation Chally.

The folks over at Carscoops feel their evolution might be right on the money. It moves away from the retro ’70 reboot a bit and introduces a modern, nuanced front fascia. The wide lower grill and narrow upper opening look familiar, but the whole frontage doesn’t meet the wind like a brick wall. Instead, it seems to bend with it, sweeping back through to the fenders.

This yield to the wind is carried up the sides by a deep “wind-groove” that appears to eliminate one of the nagging aspects of the Challenger design: that high belt-line that makes the car appear slab-sided in certain photos,  a bit like it’s wearing high-waisted Mom jeans. The groove visually lowers the car and provides an underline to the high-stalk mirrors. It works.

fascia1

Window moldings have lost their over-contrasted wide black presence, giving in to a more handsome, finished side glass treatment. The rear haunches kick up and out like a – dare we say it – Herlitz-drawn 1970 ‘Cuda. Things come to a fine point at the rear with a tiny spoiler that gets the visual job done nicely by looking blended in rather than bolted on.

The hood has its familiar design roots on display, having the markers of the traditional twin power bulges. Yet these seem to sweep back towards the driver, yielding to the wind’s direction once again. It makes you wonder what’s hiding beneath the twin outlets. 1,000 supercharged horses, perhaps? AWD? We’ll have to wait and see.

As a design exercise it has many strong points. In about 20 months, we’ll see how much it has in common with initial photos of the real thing. Stay tuned.

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Des Ryan

Des Ryan has been involved in all levels of Mopar musclecar ownership, from barn finds to drivers to a high-level restored Hemicar. He's also spent over 20 years in the advertising industry as a copywriter and creative director. With pen in one hand and pistol-grip shifter in the other, Des is bringing his two passions together to keep you Direct-Connected.

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    Jim Nelson 23 January, 2016 at 19:19 Reply

    I surely hope this is just a styling exercise by some internet, photo shop kid. Someone has taken the sacred Challenger design and added both Camaro and Mustang styling cues to create this image. Whoever did it does not realize that the Camaro and Mustang are “the enemy” and true Mopar enthusiasts loath the look of them. OK, I’m exaggerating a bit, as I actually think the Camaro and Mustang are cool cars in their own right, but the Challenger is even cooler and we DON’T need the Challenger to start looking like either of those other two cars. Please say this drawing is not the direction Chrysler is taking our beloved Challenger!

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