autoevolution
 

It Looks Like a Dodge Challenger, but It's a Honda Civic and You Can Blame Mitsuoka for It

The car that you are looking at is an 11th-generation Honda Civic hatch, but it looks like a Dodge Challenger. Mitsuoka calls it the M55 Concept and it is halfway between confusing and amazing.
Dodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda Civic 11 photos
Photo: Mitsuoka
Dodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda CivicDodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda Civic
As eccentric as it may seem, it is what it is. The Mitsuoka M55 (Double Five) Concept is the company's latest project, which arrived in time for its 55th anniversary. It is the first five-door muscle car based on a Japanese model, as Mitsuoka claims. And we can't contradict them on that one since they are the ones with the expertise. The company gained popularity in Japan for building retro-styled cars based on modern models, especially on those available on the local market.

Founded back in 1968, Mitsuoka found inspiration in the golden age of muscle cars of the 1970s. The company had to deal with quite a headache: converting the five-door hatchback into a muscle car posed quite a challenge.

The Dodge Challenger wannabe retains the stock greenhouse and chrome-trimmed window surrounds. The roof and doors also kept their ground. Mitsuoka worked to stretch the front and rear overhangs in an attempt to cancel the hatchback look. The team also came with new allow wheels and white lettering on the tires.

However, the front end screams "muscle car," taking it one step closer to the original Charger look. It's got round headlights, an upright radiator grille, and an elongated hood that follow the lines of those on the American model.

Dodge Challenger replica made by Mitsuoka out of a Honda Civic
Photo: Mitsuoka
But the rear is more of a Mustang fastback of the era. Louvers cover the rear window and flow into an integrated rear spoiler. A new rear bumper and hatch and redesigned taillights show up back there. The former taillights of the Honda Civic have been disguised by panels in the body color.

Mitsouka did not change much inside, but wrapped the seats in retro-style blue leather upholstery. They also integrated some modern features, such as the 10.25 touchscreen mounted on the dashboard.

It may look like a Dodge Challenger, but it does not act like one. Because under that Challenger-looking hood, there is still the 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine, which generates 180 horsepower (182 PS). A six-speed manual gearbox delivers it to the front axle. Anyway, the V8-powered Challenger has got its days numbered. The model will be dismissed by the end of the year, and the Charger will have the exact same fate.

Mitsuoka mentions no plans of putting the M55 Concept car into production. But it would surely be affordable, considering the underpinnings. Before that happens, if ever, the concept car will be on display at the Mistook Azabu Showroom in Tokyo from November 24 to December 16. And no, the concept is not for sale.

If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram X (Twitter)
 

Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories