According to Automotive News’ future product listing, the Dodge Challenger will be gaining all-wheel drive and a wide-body variant as early as this fall. While this seems like a sudden change, it’s actually FCA just putting into production one of their concept cars from SEMA last year.
The report states that Dodge will launch the Challenger GT AWD, which its namesake actually debuted at the 2015 SEMA show in Las Vegas. The show car was simply a Challenger with a fancy paint job and all-wheel drive drivetrain. However, the concept also had something else that is supposedly going to spawn a separate new Challenger: a wide-body kit.
Allegedly FCA is also going to bring the wide-body kit to production on the Challenger Hellcat as the Challenger ADR. ADR meaning American Drag Racing in this application.
Speculation that the Challenger GT AWD was in front of FCA’s approval board surfaced on enthusiast website Allpar.com earlier this year. Reportedly, FCA received nearly 5,000 correspondences from fans intrigued by the idea of offering a Challenger that powered all four’s.
Neither addition to the Challenger lineup is terribly shocking. While mainstream buyers have not been able to add all-wheel drive to FCA’s V-8 powered LX cars, the police have been with the Charger Pursuit package. So the technical ability to pair a HEMI and all-wheel drive on the LX cars is absolutely there.
There’s also the fact that FCA seems to be slowing down the pace of total redesigns on its products. Adding these trim levels will keep the Challenger fresh until the all-new version rolls out sometime after 2018.
A Challenger GT AWD will also bring something very new to the pony car segment. Will the other two respond?