Mopar transmissions have come a long way since the A-833 and 727 TorqueFlite, and so have the shifters we use to control them. Want proof? Jump out of your classic Mopar and into the driver seat of a new Challenger, Charger, or 300 and feel for yourself. Automatic equipped LX models have five forward gears and operate smoothly and efficiently with a lockup torque converter. New Hemi powered Mopars with manual transmissions are equipped with six forward gears, and shifting is far more precise than any A-833 could hope for, even with the best shifter. Speaking of shifters, we’ve always thought that the new Mopar offerings should be equipped with an iconic shifter that was made popular in classic Chrysler offerings, the Pistol Grip. Fortunately, a company called Custom Pistol Grips is making replacement shifter handles to convert your automatic-equipped Challenger, Charger, Magnum, or 300 to the classic look of a Pistol Grip shifter.

We’ve enjoyed our new Challenger since owning it, and although we opted for an automatic transmission, the new Mopar NAG1 automatic does have a manual shift, or “autostick” feature. While technically an automatic transmission with a torque converter, the NAG1 can be shifted manually by making side to side movements, left to downshift and right to up-shift, making the car fun to drive and putting the driver more in control of the vehicle. Since transmission shifting is controlled by electric switches in the console mounted shifter control, it’s easy to simply remove the stock shifter handle and replace it with a replacement unit from Custom Pistol Grips.

It’s not that we didn’t like the factory leather-wrapped shifter from Dodge, but when we discovered we could easily replace the stock handle and have the look of a classic Pistol Grip, we had to do it. Custom Pistol Grips has shifters to fit both older and the latest LX Mopars, with bodies CNC-machined from billet aluminum and inscribed with the proper shift pattern. Shifter grips are available in light or dark wood, carbon-fiber, or in plastic wood grain just like the originals.

We chose the carbon-fiber handles for our Challenger since the majority of the interior is black. It only took a couple of minutes to install the shifter, and while performance isn’t really affected, we love the way it looks. Additionally, the Pistol Grip shifter is a little taller, making it easier to rest your hand on it while resting your elbow on the center arm rest. Best of all, this is an easy swap you can accomplish in just a few minutes with a screwdriver and Allen wrench.