The Challenger Lineage

This page will showcase the history and lineage of the Dodge Challenger.

The Beginning : The Silver Challenger

Years Manufactured: 1958-1959

Manufacturer: Chrysler Corporation

Engine:  230 cu in (3.8L) “Getaway” L-head straight-six

326 cu in (5.3L) “Red Ram” V8

Transmission: 3-speed Manual

    4-speed Automatic

*This was the first car that was ever given the Challenger name and was known specifically for its exclusive silver paint.*

The Second Generation

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1970-71 Dodge Challenger body style – https//

Years Manufactured: 1970-1971

Manufacturer: Chrysler Corporation

Models: “Challenger” – Base model with either an I6 or V8

“Challenger R/T” Road/Track with the 383 cu (6.28L) V8

“Challenger SE” Special edition offers added appearance packages offered in both the base and R/T

“Challenger Coupe” introduced in the 1971 lineup with either an I6 or V8

“Challenger Coupe R/T” Performance model of the Challenger coupe

“Challenger T/A” (Trans Am) only produced in 1970. This is the street version of its race car that competed in the Sorts Car Club of America’s Trans American Sedan Championship Trans Am.

Engine: 225 cu (3.7L) six-cylinder – base model

318 cu (5.2L) V8 – standard for R/T model

340 cu (5.6L) – optional engine

383 cu (6.3L) – optional engine

440 cu (7.2L) – optional V8 engine

426 cu (7.0L) – optional V8 engine

383 cu (6.28L) “Magnum” V8 – standard for the Challenger Coupe R/T

440 cu (7.2L) “Magnum” Optional for the Challenger Coupe R/T

440 cu (7.2L) “Six-Pack” Optional for the Challenger Coupe R/T

426 cu (7.0L) “Hemi” Optional for the Challenger Coupe R/T

340 cu (5.57L) “Six-Pack” A de-stroked version of the 440 CID “Six-Pack” that was standard to the T/A model

Transmission: 3-speed manual

    4-speed manual

    TorqueFlite automatic transmission – only available for 225 CID I6 and 383 CID V8

*R/T models were available in either hardtop or convertibles but the 1970 base and R/T challengers had an optional SE package that could be ordered. This would include leather seats, vinyl roof, smaller rear window, and an overhead interior console that contained three warning lights: Door ajar, low fuel, and seat belts. The T/A was one of the first U.S muscle cars to fit different size tires front and rear.*

Third Generation (1978-1983)

Manufacturer: Mitsubishi Motors

Engine: 98cu (1.6L) 4G32 I4

160cu (2.6L) 4G32 I4

Transmission: 5-speed manual

3-speed automatic

*  Styled after the Mitsubishi Galant Lambda and Plymouth Sapporo the third generation challenger was widely known as the forgotten challenger. This model challenger was made originally overseas in Okazaki and Aichi Japan and was only sold through dodge dealers through captive import. They were often called the Colt Challengers since they were built with smaller engines (inline-four) instead of it’s original six and eight-cylinder engines.

Fourth Generation (2008-present)


Manufacturer: Chrysler LLC

Models : SRT8

Engine: 370cu (6.1L) Hemi

Transmission: 5-speed AutoStick automatic

*The original concept for the new challenger body style was unveiled during the 2006 Detroit Motor show. Its design was based off of the 1970 Challenger R/T. Chrysler begin taking deposits for the 4th generation challengers December 3rd, 2007. All 6,400 cars available for sale in the US were pre-sold and were typical sold above its MSRP around $37,999. Chrysler also auctioned off two 2008 SRT8s for charity with the first car going for $400.000 and another for a winning bid of $228,143.43*


Manufacturer: Chrysler LLC

Models: Challenger SE (Base model)

Challenger SXT (Canadian exclusive)

Challenger R/T

Challenger SRT8

Engine: 214cu (3.5L) – SE and SXT

345cu (5.7L) – R/T

370cu (6.1L) Hemi


Transmission: 4-speed Automatic (first half of 2009)

5-speed Automatic

6-speed Manual – Tremec TR-6060

  • The R/T had an optional “Track Pak” package which includes the Tremex transmission and a limited slip differential with self-leveling rear shock absorbers. Another optional package was the “Classic” , this equipped the challenger with retro aspects such as script “Challenger badges on the front panels and black or white “R/T” stripes*


Manufacturer: Chrysler LLC

Models: Challenger SE

Challenger Rallye

Challenger R/T

Challenger SRT8

Engine: 214cu (3.5L) – SE and SXT

345cu (5.7L) – R/T

392cu (6.4L) – SRT8

Transmission: 5-speed Automatic

6-speed Manual

  • In 2012 the Challenger SE was permanently renamed to the SXT to keep the naming consistent