In 2006, the Dodge Charger R/T Daytona was introduced to celebrate Dodge’s 2005 return to NASCAR racing after a 27-year hiatus. While the new Daytona resembled nothing of its winged warrior ancestor, the car came loaded with special Daytona-only features and was available in vintage colors like GoMango, Top Banana and TorRed. In 2007, the available colors for the Daytona were limited to two choices; Sublime Green or Plum Crazy Purple. Hemi Orange was the color for 2008 and the model wrapped up in 2009 with Stone White. The Daytona featured a matte black chin spoiler, a blacked out grille, retro-style R/T badges, matte black graphics on the hood, trunk lid and quarter panels and a small rear trunk lid spoiler. Many die-hard Mopar fans bellyached over the fact the new Daytona didn’t have a huge wing like the 1969 original but let’s be honest, would you buy a modern Charger with a massive wing on the back? We didn’t think so.
Under the hood, the car packed a punch with Mopar’s 5.7L Hemi MDS V8 and NAG 1 five-speed automatic transmission. For the Daytona, the engineers at Dodge changed up the intake and exhaust system to let the engine breathe better. The changes gave the Daytona a 10-horsepower bump over other 5.7L Hemi engines resulting in the car producing 350 horsepower and 390 ft. lbs of torque at 4,000 rpm. These changes also gave the Daytona models more of an aggressive exhaust tone to go with its in-your-face presence and bold looks.
To match the car’s styling and performance, handling upgrades for the Daytona included performance-tuned steering and suspension, self-leveling rear shock absorbers and stock 18-inch R/T wheels that featured charcoal grey painted pockets. For 2007, the 18-inch wheels were upgraded to chrome five-spoke 20-inch alloys with 245/45R20 performance tires. On the inside, the Daytona edition received aggressively bolstered SRT8 style seats with body-colored stitching, suede inserts and a body-colored Daytona logo stitched into the headrest. The body-colored stitching was also done on the leather steering wheel and shift knob. To continue with the body-color accent theme, the radio and shifter bezels were done in the exterior color as well.
Every Daytona was individually numbered and featured a special numbered dash plaque on the passenger side of the dash. Production numbers are as follows:
- 2006; GoMango (4000 U.S, 200 CDN), Top Banana (4000 U.S, 250 CDN), TorRed (2000 U.S, 200 CDN)
- 2007; Sublime Green (1500 U.S, 150 CDN), Plum Crazy Purple (1400 U.S, 120 CDN)
- 2008; Hemi Orange (1650 U.S, 100 CDN)
- 2009; Stone White (400 U.S, 75 CDN; as well as 12 un-numbered CDN units)
When Mark and Karen Hemrich from British Columbia, Canada decided to start looking for a summertime daily driver for Karen in the Spring of 2014, a Plum Crazy Purple 2007 Charger Daytona on Craigslist caught their attention right away. The car was located in the small community of Bowen Island, just off the coast of Vancouver. The car had remained relatively untouched over the years, only acquiring 10,800 kilometers (6,700 miles) on the odometer. Finding these cars with low mileage is hard now-a-days being as most of them were driven hard and now have over 200,000 kilometers (100,000+ miles)!
“It was totally stock, totally original. It even had the original tires! It only had one oil change done at 5,000 kilometers. Everything was untouched and nothing was modified,” says Mark. The original owner had listed it for sale and was asking $22,000. Mark continues to say, “She told me she wasn’t stuck on $22,000 and to make her an offer. She had no idea what it was worth other than she had paid $44,000 for it when it was brand new. She even had the original window sticker! I told her it was for my wife and she loved purple and we already had one purple car (check out this link to see Mark’s 1970 Dodge Charger R/T we featured in 2016– Ed.)” After making an offer and agreeing to a price, Mark left a deposit and brought Karen back the next day to pick it up and bring the Daytona home.
Once they got the car home, it didn’t take Mark very long to start modifying it as not a single vehicle in their fleet is stock. Mark decided the Daytona needed a little bit more get up and go; so the stock exhaust manifolds and exhaust were replaced with JBA long-tube headers, high flow mid-pipes and a Corsa cat-back exhaust system. To give the Daytona an even throatier exhaust note, Mark installed a COMP Cams 268-H camshaft into the Hemi. The stock throttle body was swapped out for a BBK 85mm throttle body and Mark also installed an AFE cold air intake to let the engine breathe better and Accel performance coils for better spark. To give the car even more of a performance boost, Mark installed a Diablosport Intune programmer with a 91 octane performance tune on it. For some reason, despite all of the color matched items on the Daytonas, Dodge chose to put a Hemi Orange insert on the engine cover. To continue with the purple theme, Mark changed the orange insert to Plum Crazy Purple.
For handling upgrades, Mark kept the modifications to a minimum, only installing front and rear Mopar strut tower braces. To get better traction, the original tires were tossed out and 275/40/20 Cooper Zeon RS3-S tires were installed on all four corners. Besides that, Mark has only done a few other small minor modifications like replacing the original hood prop rod with hood struts. “You pay this much money new for a car and they give you a stupid hood prop rod that you’d find on a Toyota Corolla! That’s the first thing I got rid of when I got the car home,” says Mark laughing.
The exterior and interior of the Daytona remain completely stock appearing and look as good as they did when the car rolled out of the showroom; maybe even better we think! Both show zero signs of any wear as they should since the car only had 39,000 kilometers (24,000 miles) at the time the photos were taken. This particular one is #13 of 120 built for the Canadian market. Karen drives the Daytona daily in the summer months and for winter, it gets parked away and she drives a 2003 Durango R/T (it’s also modified!- Ed.) for those cold and snowy winter days.