It’s supposedly the largest gathering ever…
Pretty much everyone knows all about the Plymouth Superbird and Dodge Charger Daytona, two extreme aero cars developed to absolutely dominate NASCAR. What they don’t know is the Charger 500 was another aero car deployed for NASCAR wins and it’s a rarer beast than the more flamboyant nose cone twins. As you’ll see in the video attached to this article, during the 2019 Aero Warriors Reunion hosted by the Wellborn Muscle Car Museum, the biggest gathering of Charger 500s was held.
Learn what happened to a Dodge Daytona and its team after being banned from NASCAR here.
To truly appreciate why the gathering didn’t involve more cars, you have to understand the history of the Charger 500. In 1968 Dodge realized it need to do something about the high-speed stability of its NASCAR stock cars. Thanks to a redesign, the Charger was aerodynamically awful, the grille being recessed as well as the back window.
While one solution was to slap a nose cone and huge wing on the Charger, another was more subtle and it came first. The Dodge Charger 500 was named for the homologation rule at the time, which was that at least 500 of a car must be sold to the public for it to be considered stock. Only one item got NASCAR riled, the spoiler under the front bumper, although it was allowed because other stock cars used them. Since this car wasn’t rocking anything else too extreme, it was able to slide right into competition.
As for the consumer version, they were sold at a base price of $3,843 with a $648 increase for the 440ci Hemi V8. A lot of people think Dodge sold the cars at a loss, but they helped with its brand image, but they weren’t so stellar on the track. That’s why the Daytona was pushed next.
The funny thing is Dodge didn’t make 500 of the Charger 500s. While the exact number is debated often, 392 is what most experts agree on. In other words, they’re incredibly rare. In the video you get to see 13 of them together, a feat they claim is a record.