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Charger Daytonas compared

by David Zatz on

There have been four Dodge Charger Daytonas, not including the front-wheel-drive Dodge Daytonas. How do they compare?

The 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona was an aero package on top of the ordinary Dodge Charger, with a radical nose-cone to the front, a giant spoiler, flush rear glass, and other touches. A prepped car passed 200 mph, and they dominated some NASCAR tracks.

The second was a style-seats-and-tires package (adding radials) for the Dodge Charger SE, with standard economy engines. Finally, in 2006, it was mainly a stripe-and-spoiler package for the Dodge Charger Hemi, with exhaust and suspension tuning that added 10 hp [review]; a 2013 edition was limited to appearance.

What of the current version? Well, it has the standard engines, the 375-horse 5.7 and the 485-horse 6.4 Hemi. The latter easily outpowers any 1969-70 Dodge engine, and does so consistently; it also outpowers the competition.

The Charger Daytona package adds $3,000 to the R/T Plus, using the same 5.7 engine but with an SRT front and rear, a 20×9 inch wheel, and 245 wide F1 tires. Straight line performance upgrades are limited to a cold air intake and a large-diameter cat-back exhaust.

new and old Charger Daytonas

The Charger Daytona 6.4 adds the brake, tire, and wheel package from the Hellcat, with a leather SRT seat, plus a functional cold air intake, for under $45,000 ($46,100 with destination). This is the one that Dodge would probably prefer for you to compare to the original Charger Daytona. It won’t hit the original’s 0.28 drag coefficient, nor will it hit 200 mph unless you swap in a Hellcat engine.

yellow and red cars

Yesterday, we concluded that the Dodge Challenger T/A was a match for the original, based on the changes made to each car for the package. Today, we conclude that the Charger Daytona is not really like the original, which was essentially an aero kit. However, it’s right on the mark of its modern-Charger predecessor and an improvement on the “Cordoba” version of 1975, which merely added bigger wheels and tires, and a snazzy paint job.

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