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From Automotive News:

Chrysler to decide whether to build Challenger by fall, report says

By BRADFORD WERNLE | AUTOMOTIVE NEWS

AutoWeek | Published 06/19/06, 7:52 am et

The Chrysler group may decide whether to make the Challenger muscle car as early as the end of the third quarter, CEO Tom LaSorda says.

LaSorda on Friday said Chrysler has been flooded with positive responses to the Challenger concept, shown at the Detroit auto show in January.

"You have to look at the investment, the cost of the program and the margins you can make," he told Automotive News at Chrysler's Auburn Hills, Mich., headquarters. "With something like this, you chase the business case and not the volume."

Chrysler officials have said the Challenger will likely be a lower-volume car with a V-8 engine. It would be built on the same platform as the Chrysler 300, Dodge Magnum and Dodge Charger cars. John Wolkonowicz, an analyst for Global Insight, predicts Chrysler will make 20,000 to 30,000 and sell them in the low-$30,000 range.
 

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Dumb ass's. They need a V-6 low cost one. To get volume sales. Why would you not want to sell more cars, and make more money?????? Look at the Mustang over 225,000 sold. The 1st year and, 70% of them 4.0 V-6 models. And Ford still can't build the 5 speed stick one's fast enough. Every dealer i talked to said you can get a the 5 speed autos. But the 5 speed sticks are hard to find and cost more.
 

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My dealer said that it was a matter not of when but where they would build it!

They wanted to get it out as promised (Time wise) With no setbacks!

My idea: dump the sebring and build the challenger as a coup/conv and the dreaded

v-6 for the "old folks"
 

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I'm right there with Spook. Why not do a lower cost V-6 option? See the secret to the Mustang has always been a range of options customize the car to what you the consumer wanted. A number of different engine options and many other things you could select from. The early ones had a lot to choose from, not so much these days. so I don't see how limiting the Challenger to just a V-8 helps anything. And its not like the early Challengers only had 8's. I'm no Mopar historian but I believe they also had slant sixes in them too. Since they're using the same platform as the Magnum/Charger/300, then they've got the 2.7 and 3.5 for options.
 

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A V6 version would likely be available in the second/third year. To launch with it would be direct competition against the 300 / Chargers. Once their sales level off popping a six in the 'LY' will bring new buyers.
 

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Just as long as they don't do the GM thing and make two Challenger 'R/T's (one with a 6 and one with an 8), like the Cobalt 'SS'. <- I ask guys if they have the fake SS or the real one :p
 

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With current market conditions the car is dead. They need to spend every dollar they can dig up to update the fleet with smaller cars and trucks. A heavy V8 coupe is a waste of money.
 

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Dead then how come they have been flooded. With people wanting them to build it. Even in non-Mopar circles. There has been alot of feed back to build it. Mustangs are still selling very strong after 2 years on the market. I do agree they need to but it on a diet. It needs to be 200 to 300+ pounds lighter that the Chargers. It would help Handling, Mpg, and Performance.
 

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froggy81500 said:
I'm right there with Spook. Why not do a lower cost V-6 option? See the secret to the Mustang has always been a range of options customize the car to what you the consumer wanted. A number of different engine options and many other things you could select from. The early ones had a lot to choose from, not so much these days. so I don't see how limiting the Challenger to just a V-8 helps anything. And its not like the early Challengers only had 8's. I'm no Mopar historian but I believe they also had slant sixes in them too. Since they're using the same platform as the Magnum/Charger/300, then they've got the 2.7 and 3.5 for options.
Your right you could get 225 slant six's in Cudas and Challengers. But they where rare. Most came with 318's and 383's.
 

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SPOOK R/T said:
Dead then how come they have been flooded. With people wanting them to build it. Even in non-Mopar circles. There has been alot of feed back to build it. Mustangs are still selling very strong after 2 years on the market. I do agree they need to but it on a diet. It needs to be 200 to 300+ pounds lighter that the Chargers. It would help Handling, Mpg, and Performance.

Lets see a business case for 20,000-30,000 unit car when the market is moving to smaller cars and trucks. No way the board is going to aprove a niche project like this when the rest of the fleet needs to redone to compete in a changing market. High fuel prices are here to stay and will only get higher in next few years. Now if they could could do a Challenger on a small platform and offer small engine for the volume with a small run performance version that could be a different story. It makes more sense to do a Challenger package on something like the new Avenger. They would sell as many units and spend much less money on developement. A few tape stripes and different engine and there you go.
 

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I totally agree about building them with v6s as well. Some people might like the styling but don't want the cost & poor fuel economy of the V8. Look at our cars, theres a ton of SEs but fewer ESs and even fewer R/Ts. Some people liked the intrepids but wanted the better fuel economy and lower cost of the 2.7. Back in the muscle car day there were so many mechanical options to choose from. I no at one point with the camaros GM had 2 or 3 different 350s with different power to choose from. Back then you could also order special packages and get different gears and all kinds of stuff from the factory. Today cars are pretty much standard for drivetrain and body style you just pick different comfort and convenience options. I guess it keeps production costs down but also limits the choices of the consumer and I would think sometimes forces a buyer to go to another brand because a car they like might come standard with more features than they can afford.
 

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adaptabl said:
High fuel prices are here to stay and will only get higher in next few years.
From what I understand (told by some business owners in the oil and gas business), approximately 60% of what we're paying for gasoline today is pure "terrorist risk", which will begin to dissipate within a year or two. As that trend continues, prices will end up back at 1/2 of today's prices. I guess we shall see, I hope they are correct...
 

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IntrepidBus IV said:
From what I understand (told by some business owners in the oil and gas business), approximately 60% of what we're paying for gasoline today is pure "terrorist risk", which will begin to dissipate within a year or two. As that trend continues, prices will end up back at 1/2 of today's prices. I guess we shall see, I hope they are correct...
No way. In this day and age, just as one threat starts to disappear, another one is on the horizon. I'm pretty confident you can kiss goodbye the days of cheaper energy. And another important factor affecting prices is inflation. Right now inflation here is rising. You might be right on the terrorist risk and its influence on price, but I really doubt its gonna decline anytime soon. We bounced from Afganistan to Iraq and next possibly to Iran and/or Korea.

But back on the car topic. It is a tough situation. People want the car built but yet will there be an adequate market to justify it? I've made these parellel comparisions before regarding the 70's energy crisis and our current energy prices (Spook, I'm sure you remember that thread!). Back in the 70's, when there were lines at the pumps and all the other things going on, it killed the era for the Muscle Cars. Only a small handful survived because they adapted to the times. That energy crisis gave birth to the econobox trend. That was really the beginning of the Far East invasion of small, reliable and fuel efficient cars that are taking over US automakers at the top of the list. And in these current times, since Hurricane Katrina especially, we're really looking at a similar situation. Watch every TV commercial for a car and a majority of them are promoting how fuel efficient their cars are. Like the latest Chevy commercial I recently saw that they have X number of cars getting 30 MPG or better. Unfortunately, the Challenger isn't one of those cars that'll fit into that kind of marketing strategy. And sadly enough, the Challenger is sitting in limbo because of the energy market right now. Everybody is looking at fuel efficient cars, hybrids and ethanol technology meanwhile DC is pondering how in the hell they'll get the Challenger off the ground, so to speak. To Ford's credit, they got the new restyled Mustang out ahead of the latest energy buzz. Its sales is highly fueled by its retrostyling and, of course, its name. The Challenger might be able to ride it out on retrostyling, but a lot of the younger culture don't have a clue what a Challenger was, so there might not be a big fan base like the Mustang.

And of course, GM has to watch this carefully, since they're looking at re-issuing the Camaro and Firebird, both very much retrostyled as well. At least to GM's credit, much like Ford, it hasn't been that long since the last production of the Camaro and Firebird, so they aren't exactly a distant memory like the Challenger.
 

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What Chrysler really needs is a mid-size car with a V6 in the $20-25,000 (CAD) range.

Like the....uh um Intrepid!

enough with these high priced cars like the Magnum and 300C.
 

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boltuprite said:
What Chrysler really needs is a mid-size car with a V6 in the $20-25,000 (CAD) range.

Like the....uh um Intrepid!

enough with these high priced cars like the Magnum and 300C.

Chrysler can't compete in that market. They would be going against the Accord,Camry,altima,Mazda6,Fusion,G6,Sonata,Etc. Tough market to break into. Even tougher market to make money in for DC.
 

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I thought the Intrepid is full-size correct? But in any event the Challenger ought to be in the $25000 price range...with an optional v6...the original Challengers and Cuda's had about 15 different combinations of engine setups. Also people were able to afford them too, nowadays 35000 for a new car...not me!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
The one thing Chrysler has in it's favor to build the Challenger is the platform is already there. Cost-wise it will be much cheaper to bring it out. They'll sell enough but making it available with a V-6 would help saleswise. The sad thing is I read that they're now thinking of not making a V-6 model so they could keep it more exclusive. Dumb move from my perspective. The V-6 can only help it saleswise.
 

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Anyone serious about owning a Challenger should opt for the V8 ANYWAYS.
 
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