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2015 Charger: the unexpected refresh

by David Zatz on

With E-Evo work pushed back (and maybe abandoned) and a complete rework of the large car line postponed until 2017 or later, Chrysler announced in late 2012 that it would have an unexpected L-car refresh, covering Charger and 300/300C. Thus, the 2015 Dodge Charger (to be unveiled in mid-2014) will not be the completely new car some expected, but is likely to be a polish-and-update of the current cars.

Most observers expect the 2015 Charger and 300C to get eight-speed automatics as standard equipment across the line, which would help the V6 police car to compete more effectively against Chevy’s V8 Caprice, and could cut operating costs for police departments regardless of which engine they choose. By then, the eight-speed should have amassed a good reputation for reliability and durability, including the Chrysler-rejiggered version built in Indiana. UConnect 2, full parking assist, and other gizmos are also de rigeur for the refreshed cars.

What is less likely, perhaps, is a major revision to the front suspension, moving from the Mercedes-influenced high-wishbone design to Maserati’s new low-stacked wishbone, as seen in the Maserati Ghibli. However, Chrysler engineers are likely to do what they can to edge closer to the livelier Maserati configuration, without causing too much disruption at the plant. Currently, we expect that the Charger, Challenger, and 300C will each be phased in at different times, which may limit how much each model can be changed. Ralph Gilles has already told us that the 300C will not be moving to the new Chrysler styling theme for this refresh, because the changes would be too extensive. The rear suspension may or may not adopt some of the Ghibli tuning changes, where time and cost permit.

The speculative rendering above wraps current Dodge cues around the shape of the Ghibli, and might be a rough pointer as to where the Charger will end up in its 2017-2020 reincarnation. You can see a more forward-looking rendering and an overlay of the Charger over the Ghibli, along with a rear view (based on 1999 Charger, 2013 Charger, and Ghibli) and more details on our 2015 Dodge Charger page.

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