The 1921 Duesenberg Straight Eight and the 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T SE have officially been inducted into the National Historic Vehicle Register! These two cars will join the ranks of the other 26 automobiles currently on the register. Their histories will be documented in perpetuity at the Library of Congress so their stories may live on for generations!
This 1921 Duesenberg Straight Eight, later known as the Model A, was the first passenger car Duesenberg, ordered new by the Castle Family. It was designed to “outclass, outrun, and outlast any car on the road” by setting a new standard for luxury and performance in a road-going automobile at the time. Featuring the first straight-eight engine in a passenger car, innovative hydraulic brakes, and an aluminum body by Bender, the Straight Eight laid the foundation for one of the most prolific and recognized automobile brands in American history. The “Castle Duesenberg”, as it is often called, stayed with the Castle family for nearly 100 years until it was donated to the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum in late 2019.
The 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T SE is the quintessential example of a muscle car. Ordered new with loads of options by Godfrey Qualls, this unrestored Hemi Challenger was secretly street raced on the roads of Detroit and eventually passed down from father to son amongst the Qualls family. It features a gator-grain top, a 4-speed transmission, Hurst shifter, an all-black color scheme, and a 425 hp Hemi V8 (among other styling and performance options) that make it a one of the most unique Dodge Challengers ever built.
With Duesenberg celebrating its 100th Anniversary and Challenger celebrating its 50th anniversary, there is no better time than now to recognize each of these vehicles as having made an impact on America’s history.
Stay tuned for full-length documentaries on each of these cars, and even a glimpse of what it’s like to get behind the wheel of such legendary historic vehicles!