The R/T nameplate has as much heritage to the Dodge brand as HEMI®. Both equally resonate among passionate enthusiasts all over the globe. First introduced in 1967 on the Dodge Coronet model, the R/T package was much more than just flashy wheels and some badges plastered all over the bodywork. Short for “Road” and “Track”, the Dodge engineers and product planners did their homework and when the R/T made its debut. Instead of going with the sedate 383, the team insisted on making sure the new 375 horsepower 440 Magnum V8 was under the hood as standard equipment (the 426 HEMI was optional for buyers looking to take no prisoners on the drag strip). The R/T package also included a heavy duty suspension, performance tires and an upgraded cooling system.
By 1968, the R/T packaged was available on the second generation Charger and when the Challenger was introduced in 1970, buyers could purchase an R/T model with a wide variety of engines and options. With the changing consumer tastes due to high insurance rates going through the stratosphere for performance vehicles and with the infamous oil embargo, the R/T nameplate met a lowly demise and quietly slipped away by 1972. It resurfaced momentarily in the late 1970′s on the Dodge Aspen but the heart and soul was not there as the ground pounding big-block Wedge and HEMI engines were not to be found in the option guides. The R/T nameplate would reappear in the 1990′s on the Dodge Neon and Stealth but it would take another decade to find its rightful place among gear heads looking for a rear-wheel drive performance car.
Fast forward to 2006 and the R/T package is reunited with an old friend, the Charger. And just like the glory days of the past, the Charger R/T was powered by the next generation HEMI displacing 5.7 liters and pushing out well over 300 horsepower. With the introduction of the 2009 Challenger R/T, the HEMI received a bump to 370 horsepower. Our product team even developed the “Classic” edition that included a 1971 inspired “R/T” stripes and high-impact colors. This year, the infamous R/T package will be available on the 2011 Durango, Grand Caravan, and Journey. And like its predecessors of the late 1960′s, it will carry the same DNA with great drive train, refined suspension, unique wheel and tire packages and an aggressive style that is distinctively Dodge.
Article Courtesy of RedLetterDodge