The sales numbers for the 2023 Q2 are in and during the months of April, May and June, the Dodge Challenger outsold the Ford Mustang by a pretty considerably margin. However, thanks to a strong start in Q1, Ford still leads the muscle car race, but when the Dodge Challenger won the muscle car sales title in 2021 and 2022, the Pentastar- and Hemi-powered machines started the year off in a similar manner – trailing the Mustang only to come storming around for the win in the second half of the year. The past few months, coupled with the fact that every Challenger built this year will sell quickly, should allow Dodge to make a real run at the three-peat.
2023 Q2 Muscle Car Sales
The Dodge Challenger was the bestselling muscle car (or sporty two-door, rear-drive car if you prefer to argue the semantics of muscle cars, pony cars and sports cars – Challenger outsold them all) in the second quarter of 2023. Dodge sold 12,904 examples of their brawny muscle car during those three months, and while that is down 11% from the same grouping of months last year, the Mustang was down 12% during the same period even with the introduction of the 2024 models. Ford sold 10,760 Mustangs over the past three months, so Dodge won the Q2 portion of the race by about 2,000 units.
The Chevrolet Camaro does still exist for now and it had its best quarter since 2019, moving 9,557 units during Q2 of 2023. That is a remarkable improvement of 110% over the second quarter last year – presumably driven by the fact that GM has announced the official end of this era of the Camaro. Chevy didn’t even really bother to do much for the final model year, so the odds are good that Camaro sales will remain strong-but-flat through the end of the year. That being said, the Camaro has no shot of finishing anywhere but last in this race of three.
The Annual Sales Race
Ford won the first quarter race over the Challenger by 3,340 units and in Q2, Dodge won the race by 2,144 units, so the Mustang leads by a margin of 1,196 units after the first half of 2023. At the end of the first half in 2022, Ford led the race by 562 units and in 2021, Ford was 1,801 units ahead at halftime. In both of those situations, the Challenger performed like a Hellcat with the big pull at the end to take the win. We know that the Brampton Assembly Plant will work until late December to get every last possible Challenger built, but will that be enough to overcome the interested in the refreshed 2024?
We will have a much better look at the likely outcome of this race in early October.
Oh, as for the Camaro, Chevy has 17,337 units through the first six months of 2023, marking the best year for the bowtie-clad muscle car since 2019.