Classic Concepts: 1999 Dodge Charger R/T Packs Supercharged V8 Power

With the next generation of the Dodge Charger on the horizon, we wanted to take a look back at the concept car that introduced the world to the modern usage of that legendary nameplate. The 1999 Dodge Charger R/T didn’t share many aspects with the production cars with the same name that debuted for the 2006 model year, but this was the car that effectively gave us our first look at the modern rear-wheel-drive Mopar performance lineup.

1999 Dodge Charger R/T Concept

Like the 2006 production car, the 1999 Dodge Charger R/T was a four-door sedan riding on a variation of the LH platform, but those were really the only similarities between this concept car and the production car. The most obvious difference at first glance is the front end of the concept, which has a much more aero-friendly design with a sharply tapered nose that varies wildly from the upright design of the 2006 production front fascia.

1999 Dodge Charger R/T Concept

The greenhouse of the 1999 Dodge Charger R/T is also more slippery than the 2006 production models, but the sculpting that flows from the front doors back to the rear quarter panels was showcased on the 2012-and-newer Chargers. Out back, the 1999 Charger R/T concept has a very linear design and while all of the production Chargers have a linear design, none of them really look like the ‘99 concept car. The overall shape of the rear end does slightly resemble that of the upcoming 2024 Charger and, like the upcoming models, the concept had the exhaust exiting through the middle of the lower fascia.

1999 Dodge Charger R/T Concept

Where the 1999 Dodge Charger R/T was unique from any production car ever offered from the performance-minded brand was in the drivetrain. This sleek concept was powered by a unique variation of the 4.7-liter overhead camshaft V8 from the Dodge Dakota, but where the pickup engine is naturally aspirated and offers up to 250 horsepower, the Charger R/T concept 4.7-liter mill was supercharged and set up to run on compressed natural gas.

1999 Dodge Charger R/T Concept

The supercharged CNG 4.7-liter V8 in the 1999 Dodge Charger R/T delivered 325 horsepower and the power was sent towards the rear wheels by means of a 5-speed manual transmission. No modern Dodge product ever featured a supercharged 4.7-liter V8 that ran on compressed natural gas and no modern Charger came with a manual transmission, so we never saw a production drivetrain similar to this concept – but we did see a supercharged V8 help the modern Charger become the most powerful four-door sedan in the world.

1999 Dodge Charger R/T Concept

While this sexy sedan never made it to production, the 1999 Dodge Charger R/T was the first look at the program that would yield the modern Dodge Charger sedan, along with the modern Dodge Challenger, Dodge Magnum and Chrysler 300. The V8 drivetrain was unlike anything we ever got in production form, but this car showed the world that some affordable rear-drive Dodge performance vehicles were on the way.