DEC 6, 2010: THE 24 CARS OF CHRISTMAS DAY 6: THE 1968 CHARGER

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The 1968 Charger was one of those automotive moments where Detroit got it just right.

 

The car was a beauty and it made the first generation 1966-67 Charger more unloved than ever.

 

‘Personally, I really liked the 1966-67 Chargers- but I loved the 1968 Charger-the car was pure style from its hideaway headlights to its iconic taillights.’

In between was some of the best sheet metal ever lovingly stamped for an automobile.

 

 

The 1968 Charger became a movie star when ultra-cool actor Steve McQueen included it in ‘Bullitt‘ as part of a car chase scene that still ranks among the finest in movie history.

 

 

The only way that Steve McQueen could have gotten cooler would have been behind the wheel of the Charger. Sure the Mustang was nice, but a black 1968 Charger was a better fit in the cool department.

 

 

Plus-the reality of an actual race between a 1968 Mustang and a 1968 Charger equipped like the movie cars was no contest. The Charger would blow the doors off the Mustang.

 

 

Steve McQueen’s Mustang would have stayed in the Charger’s rear view mirror until he completely faded from view. There would have been no side- by- side door-bashing action in a real road duel.

 

 

So maybe the best chase in movie history made both cars very famous in car world, but I loved the 68 Charger long before I ever saw the movie. And I love them even more today than yesterday, to paraphrase an old song from the late 60s.

 

 

Chrysler climbed to the top of the mountain with its 1968 Charger, and you can’t go any higher than the top of the hill. Merry Christmas…

 

Jim Sutherland

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