2005 Dodge Magnum Appearance Enhancements - Making Your Magnum Venomous
Going From R/T To SRT
From the July, 2007 issue of Mopar Muscle
By Dave Young
Photography by Dave Young
Even if you don't like the styling of Dodge's new low-riding Magnum or other LX platform cars, you must admit it's nice that Mopar finally provided a V-8-powered, rear-wheel-drive performance automobile. In our eyes, the Magnum is a nice blend of utility, performance, and style, and the Hemi-equipped R/T version has plenty of power to elevate your heart rate. But while the Magnum R/T performs well, it just doesn't have many styling cues to distinguish it from its V-6-powered siblings. So when our friend Steve Edwards of Bartow, Florida, decided to give his Magnum R/T the look of an SRT, we decided to follow along and see just how involved the conversion was.
The performance of the new...
The performance of the new Magnum R/T and the power of the new 5.7 Hemi is more than enough for the average driver, but what if you want the styling of the SRT Magnum without the expense of the SRT package? In this article, we'll show you what it takes to get the SRT look without the cost of the SRT package.
From the front, the Magnum...
From the front, the Magnum R/T doesn't look much different than its V-6-powered SXT siblings. We'll change that by adding SRT bumpers, grille, and a Magnum Force hood from RKSport.
Styling differences are subtle...
Styling differences are subtle between the R/T and SRT versions of the Magnum, but the SRT trim does give the car a more aggressive look. As you can see, the new bumper covers come in primer so they must be painted to match the color of the car.
Adding aftermarket hardware to a car to improve its looks, performance, or both, is nothing new. In the '70s, it was Hi-Jacker air shocks, traction bars, and a set of Cragars. In the '80s, everything was overchromed or pro-streeted, but rarely ran down the track. In the '90s, the G-machines became popular as more aftermarket suppliers were manufacturing quality suspension and brake components for older vehicles. These days most automotive upgrades are a blend of performance and looks. Large diameter wheels, low-profile tires, composite body panels, and ground effects are now the trend, especially when it comes to new iron. Since the Magnum already has large wheelwells, Steve wanted to take advantage of this feature by adding larger rims and tires. When it came to the external appearance of his Magnum, he liked the styling of the SRT.
To achieve the look of an SRT Magnum, both the front and rear bumper covers must be changed, as well as the grille and trim. There is also some ducting which must be added to take advantage of the additional openings in the SRT bumper, routing air to cool the brakes. All the parts necessary to complete the bumper change are available from Mopar through your local dealer.
Since Steve didn't want to simply look like every other SRT Magnum on the road, he opted for a fiberglass "Magnum Force" hood from RKSport in Murrieta, California. This hood closely resembles the hood of a Viper SRT 10 and fits well on the SRT-adorned Magnum, giving a look that appears somewhat factory, but is much more aggressive. An added benefit of this hood is that it ducts fresh air to the airbox, giving a performance gain as well. The swap is really pretty straightforward, but since the new SRT bumper covers and the hood all come unfinished, they need to be painted to match the outer body color of the car.
Overall, this conversion is easy and, except for the painting, can be accomplished with basic hand tools. Aside from the painting, the entire conversion took about 10 hours to complete and really changed the appearance of the car. While the parts aren't cheap, they cost far less than the price tag of an actual SRT Magnum, so this conversion makes sense if you're after the look but not necessarily the performance of a Magnum SRT-8.
Before the hood is removed,...
Before the hood is removed, the windshield washer nozzles, lines, and hood insulation must be removed.
The factory hood is held to...
The factory hood is held to the hinges with four bolts. Since the factory Magnum hood is made from lightweight aluminum, the fiberglass hood is nearly the same weight, so the hood struts won't need to be changed.
Before painting our new RKSport...
Before painting our new RKSport hood, it must be checked for proper fit. It's better to make any necessary adjustments now than after the hood is painted.
Once the hood is properly...
Once the hood is properly fitted to the car, the windshield washer nozzles can be installed. We used a grinder and carbide cutting bit to slowly enlarge the holes until the nozzles fit snugly.
Having the right tool helps...
Having the right tool helps to remove the clips holding the upper front bumper cover on. These clips can be re-used if removed properly; if removed with a screwdriver they'll probably have to be replaced.
With the upper clips removed...
With the upper clips removed from the front bumper cover, it can be pulled away from the radiator support to access the lower attaching bolts.
With the factory front bumper...
With the factory front bumper cover removed, the new SRT cover is trial fit to the car. Any adjustments or trimming should be accomplished now before the cover is painted to match the car. The same procedure is used for the rear bumper cover.
With the new front bumper...
With the new front bumper cover installed, the fit of the new hood is again checked. It's better to find any interference now than after the parts have been painted.
Once everything is properly...
Once everything is properly fitted, it is again taken apart to be prepped for paint. Since the hood ducts cold air to the engine, we won't be using the insulation blanket, and the bottom of the hood will be painted the body color as well.
Using the factory front seal,...
Using the factory front seal, the new hood is marked and drilled for the retaining clips.
After priming the new hood,...
After priming the new hood, it's coated with a dry guide coat and sanded to find any low spots. None were found, so after a quick block-sanding, our hood was ready for paint.
Once sanded and prepped, the...
Once sanded and prepped, the parts are moved to the paint booth where they are once again cleaned and blown off with compressed air.
What You'll Need
Lots of small parts are required to complete this conversion. the following is a list of the part numbers you'll need to make your Magnum look like an SRT. Thanks to Tom Edwards Dodge, we were able to secure all the part numbers. You'll need to call your local Dodge dealer for current parts pricing.
|Quantity ||Part number ||Description |
|1 ||4854675-AA ||Front fascia |
|1 ||5030048-AA ||Fog lamp bezel |
|1 ||5030049-AA ||Fog lamp bezel |
|4 ||6504521 ||Pushpins |
|1 ||030054-AA ||Air duct |
|1 ||030055-AA ||Air duct |
|1 ||5030042-AB ||Grille |
|1 ||5030043-AA ||Grille |
|1 ||5030044-AA ||Front molding |
|1 ||5030045-AA ||Front molding |
|2 ||6503819 ||Retainer |
|8 ||4806226-AA ||Spring clip |
|4 ||6505223-AA ||Nut |
|2 ||6503929 ||Cone screw |
|4 ||4806110-AA ||Pin |
|8 ||505145-AA ||Hex screw |
|1 ||5029908-AB ||Front shield |
|11 ||34201631 ||Retainer |
|1 ||065322-AC ||Weatherstrip |
|1 ||5030050-AB ||Rear fascia |
|1 ||5030052-AA ||Fascia molding |
|1 ||5030053-AA ||Fascia molding |
|1 ||5030051-AA ||Closeout panel |
|4 ||6504521 ||Pushpin |
|3 ||4806240-AB ||Pushpin |
|4 ||4806334-AA ||Fascia pin |
|4 ||6500859 ||Rivet |
|1 ||4805754-AF ||Headlamp |
|1 ||4805755-AF ||Headlamp |
|1 ||4806011-AE ||Windshield washer hose |
|1 ||5030130-AA ||Plate, package |
|24 ||68019469-AA ||Grille clip |
|1 ||4805899-AB ||Ram ornament |
J.D. paints each part in Diamont...
J.D. paints each part in Diamont base/clear to match the car's exterior color. If you're doing this conversion at home, we recommend taking the parts to a quality paint-and-body shop to be painted.
After the paint cures, the...
After the paint cures, the grilles, trim, and ducting can be assembled before the bumper is installed on the car.
Starting at the bottom, the...
Starting at the bottom, the SRT front bumper cover is installed using the new hardware. The same procedure is used for the rear bumper.
The hood can now be installed...
The hood can now be installed and adjusted for proper fit. Once the hood is bolted in place, the front hood seal and windshield washer nozzles can be installed.
From the rear, the SRT bumper...
From the rear, the SRT bumper cover gives the Magnum a more aggressive look.
The SRT bumpers, trim, and...
The SRT bumpers, trim, and grille, matched with the RKSport Magnum Force hood, really give the Magnum R/T an aggressive look that matches its performance. At under $4,000, this conversion is far less than the difference between an R/T and SRT versions of the Magnum. So if you're happy with the performance of an R/T but want the SRT look, this transformation definitely makes sense.