My mother always said, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans”. Now whether or not you believe in the existence of an all powerful deity, you have to admit there are always forces stronger than yourself that can steer your life into a certain direction. You know, that whole “everything happens for a reason” ideology. But I’m not here to bombard you with cliches. This is the story of how Walter Hartman, a Process Manager for Capitol One Bank in Richmond, Virginia, came to own his gorgeous 2013 Granite Crystal Metallic Dodge Charger R/T.
Walter has always been a guy who rolls through cars quickly; always trading up for something bigger and faster to keep his appetite satisfied. Back in April of 2013, Walter was crusing in his daily driver, a Nissan Frontier, when a careless driver ran a red light while texting and totalled his truck. Devastated, but undaunted, Walter’s gap coverage and insurance covered everything and he was able to buy a brand new 2013 Charger R/T without any negative equity being rolled into the cost of the car. Walter knew right away that the Charger R/T was exactly the car for him, and he ventured out to bring one home. So in the end, Walter ended up with a showroom new car, with all the trimmings, for a lower monthly payment than he was paying for the Nissan. We all know texting while driving has become sort of a pandemic in our society, but thankfully no one was seriously hurt in this situation and something good came from it.
The new R/T is not Walter’s first Mopar. Walter got into the Mopar game when he purchased a 1972 Dodge Power Wagon with the intention of restoring it. He bought that truck before he even had his license but as fate would have it, the Power Wagon met its end wrapped around another car in Walter’s stepfather’s junk yard. Over the years, Walter has owned a 1990 Dodge Shadow Turbo, a 1995 Dodge Neon and a 2000 Dodge Dakota which had a vanity license plate reading ‘LOUDNLO’, of which he still has the license plate. His draw to the new Charger was actually kind of opposite of what most people say. The majority of fans jeered at a four-door version of the classic, but Walter welcomed it. He loved the concept of a four-door sedan with enough power to, as Walter puts it, “whoop most coupes out there”. We at Modern Mopar Magazine happen to agree with that theory! Walter has developed quite a love affair with the Charger. The car is no trailer queen or weekend warrior ride. He proudly takes it everywhere and shows it off.
In the short time that Walter has owned the Charger, he’s managed to do some subtle but attractive upgrades. The deep exterior color really didn’t need anything done, so that was left alone, as was the plush interior. Under the hood, Walter went old school by adding a HEMI orange engine cover and a K&N cold air intake that was also painted HEMI orange. The car is too new to need a brake upgrade yet, but Walter wanted to give them a custom touch. He installed a set of MGP brake caliper covers, had them painted to match the car and the iconic R/T logo was engraved. To keep the interior cool, and give the Charger a little more of a sinister look, Walter tinted the windows and to go one step further, had the R/T logo cut out in the rear quarter windows.
While Walter admits he usually flips cars when he gets tired of them, he tells us that there is no way he’ll be trading in his new Charger at any point in time. It’s a “keeper” in his words and he’s let us in on some of his plans. His next modification planned is going to be a cat back exhaust system, so he can give his HEMI a little more of a growl. Walter also let us know that after a few of his expenses are cut down, that he’s saving his pennies for an Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger. Now we’re talking!! Walter, the gang at Modern Mopar Magazine has one request: When the supercharger is installed to definitely keep us posted. We look forward to seeing both the smile on your face, and the bill for a new set of rear tires!
By: Shawn Kaufman