Dodge Honors Street Racing Legend With The 2023 Challenger Black Ghost Edition


The sixth “Last Call” model is the 2023 Dodge Challenger Black Ghost special edition. Limited to just 300 units, this package is designed to pay tribute to the 1970 Dodge Challenger owned by legendary Detroit street racer and Detroit police officer Godfrey Qualls. Qualls’ Challenger, which was powered by the 426 Hemi, would randomly show up on the Detroit street racing scene, win some races and then disappear into the night – sometimes remaining unseen for months at a time.

It was unknown who drove this mysterious Dodge Challenger back in the 1970s until years later, when it was discovered that the car was driven by Qualls. The fact that he was a police officer was likely why he was so secretive about his street racing activity, while also playing a role in him never being caught by the authorities. His Challenger was black with a gator skin vinyl top and it is still in his family’s possession today, unrestored and in remarkably good condition. The picture below shows Qualls’ 1970 Challenger RT SE on display at the 2022 Roadkill Nights by Dodge event in Metro Detroit.

“There are so many legendary muscle cars in Dodge brand history, it was hard to choose the seven vehicles we wanted to pay homage to with our Last Call lineup, but the Black Ghost was an easy pick,” said Tim Kuniskis, Dodge brand chief executive officer – Stellantis. “The 2023 Dodge Challenger Black Ghost is the prelude to what we’re going to unveil with our seventh and final special-edition model.” 

The 2023 Dodge Challenger Black Ghost is based on the SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody, but it features the 807-horsepower output of the Jailbreak and Super Stock models. The 8-speed automatic transmission is standard on this package as it is with all Redeye-based models, and a set of 3.09 gears help the Mopar monster move out a bit quicker from a dig.

As you can see in the images here, the Challenger Black Ghost is painted Pitch Black with a white tail stripe and an array of silver trim bits, including the 1970s-style “Dodge” font logo across the upper fascia. 

This is a pretty interesting idea, as the 1970 Challenger had this logo across the leading edge of the hood, but that car’s hood extended all of the way out over the grille. The modern car has a design where the hood stops well short of the grille and the front fascia fills the space between the grille and hood. The Black Ghost Challenger also features a classic cursive script Challenger logo on the grille, fenders and rear spoiler, giving the package a very retro look. 

The most unique feature of Qualls’ 1970 Challenger was the gator skin vinyl roof treatment and this new buzz model replicates that look with a black vinyl wrap of the center-roof section that mimics the design of the old school vinyl top. The exterior of this package is completed with a bright fuel filler door, black Brembo brake calipers, Mopar hood pins and the 20×11-inch Satin Carbon Warp Speed wheels.

On the inside, the 2023 Dodge Challenger Black Ghost special edition package comes with Laguna Leather and Alcantara seats and door panels, with an Alcantara-wrapped steering with with a red illuminated SRT logo in the center and a suede headliner. The interior also features real carbon fiber bezels and a unique Black Ghost badge on the passenger’s side of the dashboard.

While we do know that only 300 examples of the Black Ghost special edition will be made, we do not know for sure how much these cars will cost. Since they are essentially loaded Challenger Redeye Widebody models with extra features, we expect that they will be priced on the higher end of the Redeye range. Official pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date, but like the rest of the Last Call buzz models, the Black Ghost package cannot be ordered. These cars will be randomly built and shipped to pre-selected dealerships, and prospective buyers will be able to learn their location on the Dodge Garage Horsepower Locator, which is set to go live sometime in October.

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Patrick Rall

Industry News Editor Patrick entered the Mopar world when he bought his 1983 Mirada back in 1994, installing a mild 340 a year later that would eventually be built up into the range of 500 horsepower. Today, Patrick daily drives a Hellcat Challenger, but he still has his 340-powered Mirada, as well as a 1972 Demon 340 and a Hemi Ram.

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