Famed YouTube mechanic Car Wizard has recently bought a 2006 Dodge Charger Daytona in bad condition for just $3,000. He says it’s just going to be fixed up a little, but the model is a limited edition and has historic value.
In early 2005, the Dodge Charger returned to the Daytona International Speedway and Daytona Speedweek after 27 years of absence. Think about that: one of the most famous American cars and the most famous track, reunited after nearly three decades. To celebrate, they made a special edition.
The color is significant as well, Top Banana, one of the famous high-impact heritage paint names. It made its return in very limited numbers that year, along with the metallic Go ManGo!. I think they made 3,000 orange cars first and 3,000 yellow ones towards the end of the year.
The Daytona had other distinguishing features too. In addition to the paint, these limited-edition models came with a black honeycomb grille, special black decals that read “HEMI” and “Daytona”, R/T badging, and a black decklid spoiler. But Wizard’s car is clearly missing the black chin spoiler.
At first, that made me question its authenticity, but other elements deny this idea. It’s got the right 18-inch wheels, which are in great condition, and the HEMI 5.7-liter engine has the right orange cover.
All Daytona R/T models featured a 5.7L making 350 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque, 10 hp more than standard. The Mechanic says this may have been done through a bigger air intake, and his example has also been straight-piped.
Originally, the Charger Daytona would have a less restrictive exhaust with a three-pass muffler. The interior is specific to this model too, featuring a yellow dash insert, contrast stitching, and performance front seats with suede inserts and embroidered Daytona logos in the front.
So why did it only cost $3,000?
Well, the previous owner says the engine in this car is pretty much dead, which is what you’d expect after it’s done 250,000 miles and has replaced heads. But the YouTuber says he checked everything: oil, fluids, sparks, etc. This HEMI starts without a problem and runs smoothly.
The nasty sounds which may have sounded like a “dead” engine could have come from the struts. This may have been damaged doing Dukes of Hazzard jumps and have been replaced.
The car is missing a lot of trim, has fogged up headlights, and needs mufflers to quiet down the straight-piped V8. But I believe it even deserves full restoration or at least preservation. Dodge is moving into the six-cylinder era now. The V8 has had a nice run, and this 2006 Daytona edition is from the era where it all started.