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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've never modded a car before, but to be honest, I've never had a car I've wanted to mod before. But now I've got my car. The first car I've ever bought brand-new, and the first car I've ever bought because I wanted to buy a new car; every car in the past I've bought because I needed to because what I was driving before was giving up the ghost and I had to replace it.

So I want to do something special, and it began by having it ordered right from the factory.

Well, now that I've had a chance to break her in, it's time to get to work to craft my "Retro Rocket."

Heh. Puns.

Anyway, One thing I love about the Challenger is its retro looks. Of the three "Pony Cars" still on the market, the Challenger I feel is the one that best evokes the iconic design of its predecessors. The Camaro hardly even looks like the classic Camaros, and while the 2005-2014 Mustangs did a good job of modernizing the first gen design, the 2015 has begun going the way of the Corvette, with its classic looks being destroyed by designers that want to look too...European (the new Mustang honestly looks like someone lopped the front end off a Fusion and welded it to the back end of a Porsche).

What I intend to do is start adding a few touches here and there to further the vintage looks.

First, here's my girl when I picked her up from the dealer in March:

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And this is May just after having the windows tinted and the first round of PPF applied (full front end, roof, and high-impact areas):

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The Angry Bee fender logos have since been reapplied.

Now, these are the mods I have planned:

Primary Mods

This group of mods are the "main" ones I'm looking to have done. Either because they're simply easy or would have the biggest effect on the looks of the car.

Round One - In Progress
Retro USA Quarter Scoops
Script Fender Badge
Script Rear Badge

The scoops and fender badge are the first two modifications I'll be making, with both parts on order. The Quarter Scoops should fit nicely right in front of the fender flare, if a little further forward of where it would be on the '71. After looking at a number of pictures of the '71 Challenger, it seems that quite a few paired the script badge with the R/T badge on the fender. While mine has the Angry Bee I think the same effect will work here. The question is exactly where to place it, as the positioning seems to vary. Some cars put the script centered just above the fender badge, below the line of the body angle. Others put the script above the line. I think below the angle may look best. Above the line may have worked on the '71, but that's also because the angle was a good bit lower.

I'll also be replacing the "Dodge" rear badge with another script badge. It's not a high priority, but it's such an easy thing to do I may as well.

Round Two

Polished Stainless Tail Light Bezels
Polished Stainless Rear Marker Trim
Polished Stainless Side Marker Trim

So, this is another easy set of modifications, adding the stainless trim to the reflectors and tail lights. However, I do also have a problem: I find plenty of options for marker tint or overlays that fit the Widebody, but I haven't seen anywhere selling the stainless trim that will work. Will the standard marker trim work on the Widebody if bent it around the fender? Or has anyone actually seen trim that is specifically designed to fit the Widebody?

Round Three

Stainless/Chrome Bumpers and Grill/Rear Trim
Quad Exhaust Tips

Ok, this one is the problem, but it's one I really want to do. I love the look of Retro USA's bumper and trim kit. I think the bumper helps break up the front and rear fascia and make them look less "fat" than they really are. And well, I miss the days of the chrome bumper. The problem is...Retro discontinued their kits.

So, I'm currently checking with some detailers on options.

In addition, I want to change out the stock exhaust tips for quads. Preferably square ones to match those on the original Challengers.

Secondary Mods

This group of mods that aren't a high priority, but wouldn't mind doing.

Round Four

Miscellaneous Stainless/Chrome Trim

I'd like to add some additional trim present on the '71 Challengers. Specifically:

Fender Rims
Windshield and Windows
Door handles
Grille Inserts

The grille inserts are another one that may take some doing since the Widebody doesn't have the mount points. I think if I were to have them fabricated I can get them large enough to fit around the Widebody's enlarged R/T grille badge. The problem remains the lack of attachment points, though presumably there are ways around that.

I think doing the mirrors may be a little much, and it looks like some '71 Challengers had body-colored mirrors, anyway.

Round Five

Fog Lamps

Another tricky one is I'd like to mod the front to restore the fog lamps that were deleted on the Widebody. That may take some figuring out, though, since the front fascia isn't even designed for them. Also, I'm no electrician so wouldn't even know where to begin wiring them into the electrical system. However the are amber halo lights out there that should match nicely if I can figure out a way to have mounts built and installed for them. I guess that's another one to talk to the detailer about.

Round Six

Wood Grain Center Console/Dash

Simple enough. Replace the stock plastic insert on the center console and dashboard with a wood grain. It would give the interior a nice vintage look, and honestly, the stock plastic is kind of ugly.

Undecided

I'm thinking of adding a rear window louvre for that "Vintage 'Murican Muscle" look if I can find one that fits properly, (no sagging, no interfering with the trunk) doesn't rattle, and isn't missing bottom slats. I'd want the vintage style, not that modern design that has the funky angles and such. But I haven't made a decision on this one yet.

Some Day

These are things I'd love to do, but simply not in the cards at present:

Exhaust System
Vintage-style Wheels

I'd love to do a cat back exhaust system and replace the stock with one that really gets that 70s rumble. I would also like to exchange the stock rims for a more vintage-style wheel, although I don't think I've seen anything for the Widebody.

Anyway, that's a bit of a rundown of what I have in mind. I'm going to try adding pics to this thread to chart the progress. So maybe stay tuned. And if anyone has any thoughts or suggestions I'd love to hear them.
 

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Happy Days! Another retro fanatic. I have been converting mine since 2015. My toughest find was the "Dodge" emblem for the front grill. Good luck and enjoy:).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Happy Days! Another retro fanatic. I have been converting mine since 2015. My toughest find was the "Dodge" emblem for the front grill. Good luck and enjoy:).
Thanks. I'll be keeping the Challenger script for the grille since it seems that some did have it. That's the interesting thing I've noticed: There was a lot of variation in the badges on those cars.

One thing I was thinking of doing was keeping the letters from the rear badge when I swap them for the script and reapplying them to the front across the hood since many '71s appear to have it there.

Another thing I was considering was to use an aftermarket hood with the "nostril" intakes, rather than the stock SRT-style, since that's what was used on the '71s. The main question I'd have is whether the Scat Pack actually needs the extra cooling of the center intake and vents. But it would let me put the "392 Hemi" badge along the side of the scoops like on the '71s (although I suppose I could still do it with the center intake).
 

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I had done suspension mods in my cars (love twisty roads) for years - going back to my early years

When I got my first Challenger and '09 - that brought me going even further and then getting into cam swaps and engine mods...

I've always done my own maintenance, but getting into the modern muscle era inspired me to "do deep".

My philosophy has long been, if it doesn't improve performance, I'm not doing it.

I've done retro graphics on my Challengers - between their paint colors and graphics they stood out - that was about my only deviation from my statement from above

Enjoy the ride...
Wheel Tire Vehicle Car Hood

Car Vehicle Tire Wheel Hood
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I do have an interest in improving performance as well, but I see that as a separate thing. And also probably under the “If I can ever get some really good money” thing with the exhaust and wheels.
 

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1028033

A Guy
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Oh, I do like the look of "Dodge" on the hood there. Especially with the more modern script; retro but with a touch of modern. The question is how it would work on the Scat Pack's hood with the center scoop. I think the spot might be a bit narrower.

The other problem is the recommended part has been discontinued, so I'll be at the mercy of eBay. Looks like the remaining unused ones are going for a fairly high price. So would I rather spend the extra cash on new, or deal with the hassle of cleaning up a used set.

And does anyone know of a manufacturer who makes a larger Challenger script logo that would correctly fill the rear plate? The fender logo is honestly too small to properly fill it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
See what you think, they are all smallish

View attachment 1028065
This one is a little bigger than those modern scripts, about 8" long, 4" high


A Guy
From the look of things, we probably need one that's about 12" long to properly fill the tail plate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
t's not going to be easy to really get a retro vibe with a Widebody , the Grille, Tail Lights, Flares, Hood, etc. is not going to allow it to get close.
Also 2015 and above lost tons of the Retro styling along the way went with a shell body and then went totally modern all way around. Good luck and
just go for it.
I think the main thing the grille is missing is the oval inserts. I may be able to have something done to rig them up. And the tail lights are at least partly based on the '71 so even if not exact there's still a a clear reference. I'll grant you the hood and fender flares, although as noted I was considering an aftermarket hood with the more retro-style nostril intakes, though that would be a ways off because of the money involved.

With the Cockpit interior the Console in 15 and up is not going to give you the look with wood grain it will be off sorry but its fact.
This is how my 2011 is done with Real Walnut Veneer and Stainless Im fabricating more for this to be complete.
All that carbon fiber crap will be covered soon.
I was actually looking at the Remin kit, which looks pretty good. Particularly the Japanese Cherry. I think it complements the black and ruby well.

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I do have a full Retro USA Bumper and Trim Kit for front and rear put up.
I'm jealous. I want to do that but am going to have to figure out another way to do it since those kits have been discontinued.

The best thing is when all is said and done plus the using your imagination and hands to actually
doing the projects.
I've got plenty of imagination. The problem is I'm not exactly handy. At least not like this. Sure, in theory I could fab an alternative for the Retro USA kits, but I lack the skill set and the equipment to do it myself.
 

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if back in the day counts the first things we did were add chrome wheels, Something like a cragar, rocket or keystone (i did chip foose on mine) hood pins and louvers and a Hurst shifter (if it was a stick) Only other mod ive done to mine is that stainless tail light surround and ive got the old classic style two scoop hood and put the 392 hemi emblems on it that come on the shaker that makes it look like the old 440 six pack call out on the scoops. Mine came with double up the middle stripe and thats enough stripe for me If I was going to change that id remove those stripes and put the old billboard stripes on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So, quarter scoops arrive tomorrow, and the script fender badges and the Pentastar badge I snapped up from eBay arrive by Saturday. So I should have the first pics soon.
 

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i looked too a couple months ago and it looks like there history
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i looked too a couple months ago and it looks like there history
Well crap. I'd prefer the Hurst over the Barton for the name association, but I'm leery of doing it with all the reports I've seen of the shifter shaft breaking on the Hurst. Unless there's another aftermarket shaft that does the same thing as Larry's mod.
 

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How the heck do you break a shifter shaft in an automatic? Just curious, but enough so that I'm going to research it.
 
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