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Fiat Chrysler Shakesdown the Challenger

Challenger concept combines the legendary '71 look with an updated drivetrain, engine and interior.

As a strategy, the phrase “steal with pride” is often touted in leveraging ideas from within different departments of the same company.

After reviewing what Fiat-Chrysler did with the Challenger Shakedown concept car at the Specialty Equipment Market Association, or SEMA show, out in Las Vegas this week, it’s safe to say that their engineers took this saying to heart.

The Shakedown is a classic combination of legacy muscle car and modern driving indulgences.

The only real trait it inherited from its ground-rattling forefathers is the classic Challenger look. The chassis was converted from a unibody design to a more sectional approach, and the suspension was lowered.

Drip rails, door handles, and turn signals were all removed for a cleaner look, while the fitted grille, headlights, and taillights are courtesy of the most recent Challenger.

Additionally, Brembo brakes come from the Hellcat line and a six-speed manual transmission was borrowed from the Viper. A shaker cold-air intake and custom exhaust works in symphony with the 6.4-liter 392 Hemi in cranking out over 485 horsepower.

The Shakedown also gets 20-inch Slingshot rear wheels and a pair of custom 19s on the front.

One detail that was preserved is the bright red "392" decal that graced all those classic Mopars with 360 cubic-inch V8s. Inside, the Viper shares its steering wheel, gearbox and other vintage Mopar accents, and the rear seats were ditched in favor of a parcel shelf and a roll bar.

The Shakedown offers what appears to be the absolute best FCA has to offer in terms of automotive design ingenuity and legacy awesomeness. So I’ll add my appeal to the thousands asking FCA to move this car from concept to reality.

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