Dodge will run a one-off Charger Widebody at Pikes Peak
It wasn't just plucked from the dealership showroom.
Andrew KrokReviews Editor / Cars
Cars are Andrew's jam, as is strawberry. After spending years as a regular ol' car fanatic, he started working his way through the echelons of the automotive industry, starting out as social-media director of a small European-focused garage outside of Chicago. From there, he moved to the editorial side, penning several written features in Total 911 Magazine before becoming a full-time auto writer, first for a local Chicago outlet and then for CNET Cars.
The 2020 Dodge Charger Widebody's existence hasn't even been acknowledged for a full day yet, but already,
has even more interesting news to share about the car. While hillclimb isn't Dodge's usual motorsport hang, it's apparently prepped a car that will make the dangerous ascent up the fully paved mountain road.
Dodge announced on Thursday that it created a one-off 2020 Charger Widebody to make the run up the mountain at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado. With 156 turns over 12.4 miles of paved road, the vehicle needs to handle decreasing air pressure while making sure it has the power and grip to compete with the best. It will run in the Exhibition class.
Dodge started with a regular' ol 2020 Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody, but it underwent a multitude of changes to make it ready for racing. The car's supercharged 6.2-liter V8 has been massaged just for this run, with a race exhaust and special engine tuning. It has the stock SRT suspension with some Bilstein shock absorbers to handle the g-forces. It's running on Toyo Proxes RR competition tires, and its brake system packs racing pads and high-temperature fluid. Inside, there's an FIA-spec roll cage, a racing seat and a fuel cell, all of which will contribute to the driver's safety. The whole package is wrapped in some clever tricolored livery.
Watch this: Five things you need to know about the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye
There are still plenty of stock parts in there, though. In addition to the stock suspension tuning, the Pikes Peak Hellcat also uses the six-piston Brembo brakes from the production car, as well as its eight-speed automatic transmission. Heck, it even has an air conditioning compressor -- sure, Dodge could have taken it out, but it wanted to stress how similar the Pikes Peak car is to its production counterpart.
Behind the wheel is Randy Pobst, a racing driver with a solid resume, and this trip will mark Pobst's fourth time at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The car was prepped by Wesley Motorsports in Lansing, Michigan. It's the third car from Wesley to enter the race: In 2016, a tuned
ACR finished second on race day after leading its class in qualifying, and in 2018, a
SRT Hellcat Redeye Widebody finished in 11th place because of some mechanical issues.
It was all but a matter of time before Dodge applied the popular Widebody kit to its sedan as well as its coupe. The Charger Widebody family adds 3.5 inches of body width, making space for wider wheels and tires, which in conjunction with new suspension tuning should make for a better-handling car. All 2020 Charger Hellcats will come with the Widebody upgrade, while it's only optional for Scat Pack vehicles.
This one-of-one Dodge Charger Widebody is headed to Pikes Peak