The first Charger was this concept car meant to showcase the upcoming 426 HEMI. Stylists transformed a stock Polara into a sleek roadster with a custom interior. After appearing at auto shows and dealers with a 383-cubic V8, it was stored for nearly 35 years until notable concept car aficionado Joe Bortz had it restored by Fran Roxas with a correct 600 bhp HEMI. Afterward, was sold by RM to John O’Quinn at the 2007 Monterey Sports & Classic Car Auction for $1,100,000 USD.
By late 1963, when Pontiac’s GTO hit the market and arguably launched the “muscle car” concept, not everyone in Detroit was blindsided, for Chrysler had been quietly preparing to unleash their newest weapon for competition: the new 426-cubic inch “Hemi” V-8. To launch it, Chrysler’s corporate headquarters approved the radical Charger concept car, also marking Chrysler Corporation’s first use of the “Charger” name.