Unveiled: 2011 Dodge Charger

Chrysler officially pulled the cover off its upcoming 2011 Dodge Charger sedan this week, showing the evolutionary changes to the bodywork, as well as the revolutionary changes elsewhere in the updated car.  With more curves, more power and better fit & finish, Dodge’s flagship looks like a real competitor.  Read on for details, pictures and the press release.

Re-introduced for the 2006 model year after a several-year hiatus, the Dodge Charger revived a nameplate which had sunken into ignominy in the 1980s, with the only highlight being the “Shelby Edition” of 1987, and sharing its platform with the Dodge Charger Daytona, which had a couple of performance models as well.

The new model has sold reasonably well, and has been picked up by a plethora of police departments to use as cruisers, an alternative to Ford and Chevrolet’s offerings.

Despite a modicum of success, we’ve now been looking at the same Charger for 5 years, so it’s high time for a real update, and Chrysler has given it to us.  The sheetmetal hasn’t changed a whole lot, but has gained a lot of curves, including a rear end that evokes thoughts of its 2-doored brother, the Dodge Challenger.

Classic 5-spoke chrome wheels and a fastback-styled rear end make the new Charger look more like a coupe, so it’ll be interesting to put it next to a Challenger.  Purists will still buy the Challenger, of course, but anyone who has a regular use for those rear doors will skip it and go to the new Charger.

No word on the inside, but given the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, I’m going to bet that the materials and how they fit together are all improved, with softer-touch materials and a more upscale appearance overall.

While they haven’t released pictures of the interior, Chrysler has gone into great detail on how they are differentiating the new interior from its predecessor.  Triple-sealed doors, acoustically-treated windshield and front side glass, as well as extra sound deadening material ought to give us a very quiet interior.

On the power front, the Charger will come standard with the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, Chrysler’s new corporate V6.  Optional will be a 5.7-liter Hemi V8, with a 4-cylinder mode when only a small amount of power is called for.

Expect all the standard safety features, including traction control, stability control, predictive braking (where the braking system prepares to be used based on environment variables).

On the infotainment front, Chrysler vehicles can be optioned with uConnect, which combines Bluetooth, satellite radio, navigation and other high-tech goodies.

The 2011 Dodge Charger will enter production late this year, so I’d expect to see them on dealership lots by Christmas, but no later than mid-January if all goes well.

Show Press Release

by John Suit

Source: Chrysler

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