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No fun in the sun: Dodge cancels Challenger convertible

While it may be a few years too late, the muscle car wars are once again upon us. Ford is planning to introduce a new Mustang in just a few weeks at the Los Angeles Auto Show and Chevrolet has already taken the wraps off its all-new Camaro. Dodge fans are also back in the game with the revived Challenger, but Mopar buffs will have a few less muscle car options than first thought.

While the Challenger will be offered in three flavors for 2009 - SE, R/T and SRT8 - an optional sun roof will be the closest sun-lovers will get to a drop top Challenger. Despite reports that Dodge would offer a convertible version of the Challenger, those plans have since been cancelled.

"We considered a convertible when we were developing Challenger, but the extra weight needed to beef up the car when the top was removed was too much of a penalty," Mike Accavitti, director of Dodge brand marketing, told Kicking Tires. "And that was with a manual soft-top. A power-retractable hardtop would add even more weight."

Accavitti also added that the convertible would have been aimed at a niche market, making it hard for Chrysler to recoup the development costs - especially at a time when the Michigan automaker is already strapped for cash.