Sales results for the American muscle car/pony car are in for the first half of 2019, and the results are shaky. In third place currently is the Chevrolet Camaro, with 24,516 deliveries. That’s down 3.4 percent compared to the same time a year ago. At the top (again) is the venerable Ford Mustang, with 38,542 deliveries, which is down a more volatile 9.2 percent. In the middle is the Dodge Challenger, with 28,668 units delivered. That’s down a full 23 percent from a year ago.
So it goes. As the entire auto industry faces a cyclical pullback in sales, it’s usually discretionary vehicles such as brand new performance cars that serve as the proverbial canaries in the coal mine. However, there’s a fair bit of positivity surrounding the Dodge Challenger, and it comes down to who is buying one.
“For the Challenger, it’s the youngest buyer in the segment, so there’s something to be said about that,” said Kevin Hellman, current brand manager for the Dodge Challenger, to MC&T. He’s also what you may refer to as a Millennial.
The leadership surrounding the Dodge Challenger is indeed youthful, and that may play a part as to why the Challenger has the youngest buyer in the segment. However, the median age Hellman is referring to is 51 years old.
51 is an age that may seem rather senior, but it’s all about perspective. Because according to research published by the Federal Reserve earlier this year, the average age of a new car or truck buyer has increased over the past decade, and is now around 53 years old. The central bank also noted that among new vehicles buyers, the age group made up of people 55 or older has a 15 percentage point increase since 2000. In short, new car buyers are getting older over time. But not for the Dodge Challenger.
The 50th anniversary for the Dodge Challenger is 2020 model year, so we’re looking forward to see what’s in store for what’s sure to be a special milestone for the nameplate.