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Dodge Charger R/T (1999 concept)

The 1999 Dodge Charger R/T concept car at Pocono International Speedway.

In 1999 Dodge debuted a new Dodge Charger R/T concept car. It took many styling cues from the 1960s Chargers (most notably the second generation) but also had four doors. The designers attempted to blend the rear doors into the design so they would not be noticed very easily. Compressed natural gas was purported as being in the lineup for a possible fuel source.

HistoryEdit

The concept Charger R/T exterior design was supervised by Tom Gale, head of Chrysler's styling department. The interior design was done by design partner Trevor Creed. While the concept car shared the long nose and rearward cab of the original 1966 Dodge Charger, it was a good deal shorter. It was 187 in (4,750 mm) in overall length compared to 203 in (5,156 mm) for the 1966 car. It was also lighter, 3,000 lb (1,361 kg) versus 3,650 lb (1,656 kg). The vehicle was fueled by CNG (compressed natural gas) technology. It had functional side scoops, and the chrome plated, central mounted exhaust was somewhat reminiscent of the Dodge Viper. The vehicle had functional air exhausters sculpted into its rear fascia. The concept car used a new storage tank system to deliver a 300 miles (480 km) range while not compromising storage space in the trunk.[1]

The cylinders, or pressure cells, inside the fiberglass storage tank were lined with a gas-impermeable high density polyurethane (HDPE) thermoplastic and wrapped in a hybrid mix of high-strength carbon and super-tough glass filaments that were wound with an epoxy resin. The cylinders were laid into a foam egg crate to absorb impacts. They were designed to be strong yet lightweight, resistant to environmental damage, reliable and durable. The fuel could be stored at 3600 lb³ of pressure. The car was powered by a supercharged 289 cubic inch 4.7 liter V8 engine, 2 valves per cylinder, with a single overhead cam, rated at 325 horsepower at 6000 rpm. The engine was mated to a five-speed manual transmission. This was the first rear wheel drive car on the Chrysler LH line. The car was rumored to run 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds.[2]

Following the Daimler Chrysler merger, management went in another direction with the future of the company, and the concept car was not placed into production. A new Dodge Charger (LX) would not reach production until the 2006 model year. Although built on the same Chrysler LX platform as the concept car, the new Charger bears little resemblance to the 1999 concept.

The car was featured in the video game Midnight Club III: DUB Edition.[3]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ gazeo.com. "Dodge Charger Concept - CNG that never was - gazeo.com". gazeo.com.
  2. ^ "The 1999 Dodge Charger R/T concept car". www.allpar.com.
  3. ^ "The 1999 Dodge Charger R/T concept car". www.allpar.com.