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Dodge Challenger Gains All-Wheel Drive this Fall

2016 Dodge Challenger SRT 392

The Dodge Challenger is well known for fouling empty parking lots with smoke-belching burnouts, but Fiat Chrysler Automobiles clearly feels its muscle coupe needs four-wheel traction.

Horsepower lovers in northern climes are likely celebrating the news (reported by Automotive News) that the Challenger will gain an all-wheel-drive variant.

According to the publication’s product update, FCA will market a Challenger GT AWD this fall, followed by a specialized version of its 707-horsepower Hellcat next year. That beast will be a wide-bodied, Hellcat-powered model called the Challenger ADR, likely designed for track use.

Adding all-wheel drive to the Challenger could mean new buyers for FCA’s aging pony car, which is struggling to hold its market share.

FCA’s product pipeline still shows the Dodge Charger and Challenger moving to the slimmed-down Alfa Romeo Giulia platform in 2018. The platform swap sees the two models drop significant weight (up to 500 pounds) while gaining a redesign. There’s the potential for a turbocharged four-cylinder base engine.

The Dodge Barracuda, a two-door convertible based on the Challenger, will bow in 2021.

A new look for the Chrysler 300 is a ways off, with a redesign tentatively scheduled for 2020. By not being included in the 2018 update of its LX platform cousins, the 300’s future is far more uncertain. There’s a chance that a future 300 will borrow the front-wheel-drive platform from the Chrysler Pacifica minivan — a possibility hinted at earlier this year by FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne.

(Update: the original version of this story reported that the Challenger Hellcat would receive an all-wheel drive version, which is incorrect. The text and headline has been changed to reflect this.)

[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

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