Driver Justin Allgaier (left) joins Dodge executives and the new 2010 Challenger at Talladega Speedway. (Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)

Dodge Motorsports revealed the Dodge Challenger as the “New Car” for the NASCAR Nationwide Series and announced an expansion of its partnership with Penske Racing beginning in 2010. Dodge will provide support for Penske Racing’s two-car operation in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, in addition to Penske’s three teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

“As the performance brand of our new company, we are excited to expand our relationship with Penske Racing and introduce the iconic Dodge Challenger as our entry into the NASCAR Nationwide Series,” said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO, Dodge Car Brand. “Motorsports are a significant part of the Dodge brand’s legacy. Penske Racing has such a rich tradition in motorsports, and our partnership in the Nationwide Series will provide an excellent opportunity to showcase the Challenger and offer our loyal Dodge enthusiasts plenty of excitement in this very competitive series next year.”

Penske Racing will field two teams, both running the full-season schedule. The Dodge Challenger will be used at the four “New Car” races NASCAR has designated, starting at Daytona in July. At the other 31 events that complete the 35-race season, Penske Racing will field Dodge Chargers as it did this season with the No. 12 Verizon Wireless Dodge Charger driven by Justin Allgaier. NASCAR is expecting full integration of the “New Car” in 2011.