Dodge is continuing to celebrate 50 years of its Challenger muscle car the only way it knows how—with more special editions, most recently the 50th Anniversary Commemorative Edition. If the name itself sounds familiar, too, don’t worry. Dodge announced a limited-production run of 1960 50th Anniversary Edition Challengers at the L.A. auto show last year (remember auto shows?) Think of the 50th Anniversary Commemorative Edition—hereafter abbreviated 50th A.C.E.—as the exclusive shindig’s after party, where security is a lot more lax and they’ll let anyone in the front door.
The analogy holds, since this new run of golden jubilee muscle cars is not limited in production; anyone in the market for a Challenger R/T, R/T Scat Pack, or R/T Scat Pack Widebody can pony up some extra coin to join the retrospective fun.
Opting for the 50th A.C.E. nets you a host of cosmetic upgrades. The hood, roof, trunk lid, fuel-filler door, and taillamp badges all receive the satin black treatment. These jazzed-up Challengers also get 20-inch wheels finished in Gold School and model-specific fender badges with “Challenger 50th Anniversary” grille and spoiler badges in the same satin gold treatment. Look closely at the Air Catcher headlamps and you’ll notice some LED-illuminated “50” logos inside. It’s all in the details when celebrating the big five-oh.
Inside, the party continues with tasteful “50” logos embroidered in the seat backs of the heated-and-ventilated Alcantara suede and Nappa leather seats. Sepia stitching adorns the seats, Alcantara door bolsters, instrument panel, door panels and armrest, center console lid, and the steering wheel. White-faced gauges are set into a copper-weave carbon-fiber instrument panel that boasts a similar “Challenger50” logo. When you first ignite the Hemi V-8 in your 50th A.C.E. Challenger, the instrument panels’ startup animation depicts a 1970 Challenger, a subtle nod to the beginning of this timeless muscle car.
Paint-wise, the new Commemorative Edition Challenger brings a new color to the fold, dubbed Smoke Show, but will also be offered in more familiar colors like Granite, Indigo Blue, Octane Red, Pitch Black, Triple Nickel and White Knuckle. The Smoke Show shade is one of the five new exterior colors available on 2020 Challenger and Charger models, the other four being Hellraisin, Sinamon Stick, Frostbite, and limited-edition Gold Rush.
Dodge says interested buyers should expect to pay $4995 for the package on Challenger R/T models, $5495 on R/T Scat Pack models, and $11,495 (which includes the $6000 Widebody Package) for the R/T Scat Pack Widebody. (Keep in mind that’s in addition to a $1495 destination charge and whatever extra goodies you decide to spec.) The package is already available for order, and vehicles should arrive in dealerships this fall, COVID-19-complications notwithstanding.
While some folks might roll their eyes at yet another mix-and-match Challenger, we think it’s a great play. The Challenger is the most design-forward and customizable of the muscle cars still on offer from the Big Three, so finding a way to appeal to another type of customer—in this case, one who may have missed out on the limited-run, 50th Anniversary Edition Challengers—is a logical and praise-worthy move.