This 1968 Dodge Charger came into the Roadster Shop as an unfinished project. During the next five years of on-again, off-again work, the Roadster Shop completely hand-built every square inch of the car. “We wanted to clean up, enhance, refine, and improve the Charger,” Gerber says. The Charger’s owner worked with the in-house designers and fabricators at the Roadster Shop, managing to change up every panel. Well, almost every panel. “The middle of the roof skin is unmodified,” Gerber says.
Body mods include lowering the front of the roof 1-1/2 inches to remove its uphill profile, moving the front wheel openings forward 4 inches and then stretching both front and rear openings, making new doorskins featuring exaggerated vents, aluminum hood, aluminum bumpers, shortening the cowl, fabricating the front and rear valances, bulging the front fenders and rear quarters to exaggerate the Coke-bottle effect, and creating a small deck spoiler.
Moving to the chassis, it was also completely fabricated using 1-5/8-inch chromoly tubing. The wheelbase has been stretched 5 inches to 122 inches, partially to handle the added length of the Gen II (1996–2002) Viper V10 built by Nelson Racing Engines. Tom Nelson, who also built the one-off billet aluminum intake, reworked the aluminum heads with Inconel valves. Two 67mm Precision turbos help create 13 pounds of boost, exiting through the stainless steel exhaust hidden in the rocker panels. Displacement remains Viper-stock at 488 ci.
All of this works out to 1,300 hp at 6,200 rpm and 1,100 lb-ft of torque at 5,100 rpm. The V10 spins a Centerforce flywheel, clutch, and pressure plate, all worked by a Legends five-speed transmission. In the rear is a Viper center section, with a Mark Williams ring and pinion, and Roadster Shop fabbed uprights, half-shafts, cantilevered upper shocks, and tubular control arms. The front and rear shocks are Penske double-adjustable coilovers. Front and rear brakes are Brembo Gran Turismo 14-inch discs fit with six-piston calipers. The engine block, rearend housing, and front spindles are the only off-the-shelf Viper pieces used on this Viper-Charger mashup.
The suspension is a Roadster Shop one-off design, with 19-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels designed by the Roadster Shop. BFGoodrich G-Force 295-series tires run in front and M/T 28×18-inch rear.
Also published on Medium.