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Yes, it’s true. Dodge will be getting an electric vehicle in the coming years, as early as late 2019, mid 2020. It may come as a surprise, with Dodge being the main muscle car automaker and slowly taking over the map with the Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger. The auto brand has never been known to toy much with alternative fuel vehicles, let alone hybrids or electric vehicles. Now, as the last generation of the Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger come to an end, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is seeking ways to keep some fan favorites alive in a new age.
Mike Manley, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, told The Detroit News that the current generation of the Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger will change going into 2020. With emissions regulations strangling the SRT Hellcat, the current powertrain lineup will change a lot more than it did for 2019. When Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) discussed their plans for hybrid and electric vehicles, no one expected Dodge to change, but with the likes of the Maserati going hybrid, another FCA-owned vehicle, the gamble isn’t alone.
The automotive group, FCA, has been slowly testing hybrid technology with the likes of eTorque, but could the same mild-hybrid system benefit Dodge? Muscle cars are all about the horsepower, now the torque. When it comes to going off-road or towing a large payload, eTorque greatly benefits Jeep® vehicles and Ram pickup trucks. When it comes to turning the wheels, torque helps, but it’s the engine pumping out the real RPMs.
“The reality is those platforms and that technology we used does need to move on…New technology is going to drive a load of weight out, so we can think of the powertrains in a different way. And we can use electrification to really supplement those vehicles…I think that electrification will certainly be part of the formula that says what is American muscle in the future…What it isn’t going to be is a V8, supercharged, 700-horsepower engine.” – Manley.
This will really be a different muscle car, that’s for sure. If Dodge were to make a hybrid vehicle, the current placeholder for the internal combustion engine is FCA’s new 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine or their turbocharged inline-six cylinder engine. There’s also the Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid powertrain to consider; many assume the new Dodge Challenger or Charger hybrid could use the same 3.6-liter V6 eHybrid engine powertrain set up with the V6 and a 16 kWh lithium-ion battery in the early beginnings of the next generation. When more FCA vehicles, like the Jeep Wrangler, go hybrid with the Wrangler Plug-in, we’ll have more information about the possible setup for the new powertrain.
From a Demon-inspired Hellcat model, the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye, to a hybrid. We’re not sure how that will work out, but we know it won’t have another 797 horsepower supercharged 6.2-Liter V8 engine, that’s for sure. All goods things end, regretfully.
What are your thoughts on the next-generation of Dodge vehicles? Is hybrid and electric really the way to go for a muscle car, even in this growing alternative fuel market? Join the discussion on NowCar social media.