Out with the old and in with the new: Dodge is replacing all its current internal combustion chassis by the 2024 model year. This includes the Dodge Charger, which has essentially been riding on the same platform since 2006. Rumor has it that the next-generation Charger looks a lot like a forgotten concept car from 1999.
Will there be a new 2024 Dodge Charger?
Dodge is keeping a tight lid on the 2024 Charger. CEO Tim Kuniskis has only said that the brand will stop making the current Charger by 2024.
While discussing Dodge’s eMuscle future, Kuniskis said, “If a charger can make the Charger faster, we’re in.” He has also teased the silhouette of at least one of Dodge’s next-generation eMuscle cars.
Will any of them wear the Charger badge? The name seems too perfect for electrification–whether a plug-in hybrid or a full battery electric vehicle–for Dodge to pass up. But the actual drivetrain and appearance of the 2024 Charger remain a closely guarded secret.
The 1999 Dodge Charger R/T concept car
Before the retro car boom, before the sixth-generation 2006 Charger, even before the 2005 Mustang, Dodge rolled out a Charger prototype. The year was 1999. The Viper had been a success for seven years. While the new Millenium had many auto manufacturers looking to the future, Dodge unveiled a decidedly retro prototype.
The 1999 Charger R/T was a fully functional concept car. Tom Gale, the head of Chrysler’s styling department, designed the dramatic exterior. The concept Charger’s nose and crosshair grille looked fairly modern for 1999. Otherwise, much of the vehicle was a throwback.
Its proportions–a long sleek hood and a cockpit slid toward the rear axle–were reminiscent of the muscle-car-era Chargers. The rear fenders, flaring away from a fastback window, were especially reminiscent of the second-generation Dodge Charger (1968-1970). In addition, the designer expertly blended the four-door sedan’s rear doors into its coupe-like haunches.
The concept car’s interior features four bucket seats and a full-length center console. This was interior designer Trevor Creed’s throwback to the first-generation Dodge Charger (1966-1967).
Will the forgotten concept car ride again as the new 2024 Dodge Charger?
Dodge never produced the 1999 Charger R/T concept. Instead, the company engineered an all-new Charger sedan for the 2006 model year. Some MOPAR muscle fans wonder what a modern version of that first Charger prototype would look like. They might not have to wonder much longer.
In 2015, Dodge unveiled an early design of its next-generation Charger at a dealers’ convention in Las Vegas.
Eyewitnesses told Mopar Insider that the redesigned Charger shared many “styling elements” with the 1999 Charger R/T concept. Most of these elements were in the rear of the car. Dodge had modernized the front of the car with “a more upright fascia” that reminded those present of a BMW 7-series. And in an interesting twist, FCA also unveiled a convertible version badged as the “Cuda.”
Then, Dodge presented a slideshow during Stellantis’ 2021 EV day event. The slideshow shared the outline of a Dodge Charger’s fastback rear window and wide fenders. Some believed it was a second-generation Charger’s prototype. But on closer examination, this silhouette is also reminiscent of the 1999 concept car. Will any aspects of 1999’s concept car or 2015’s super-secret prototypes see the light of day in the 2024 Charger? We will have to wait to find out.