Dodge converts its quintessential muscle car to electric

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The future of American “muscle cars” is all to be written and, for now, the indications are conflicting. If on the one hand Ford is about to present the seventh generation of the Mustang for which, at least initially, no form of electrification is envisaged, on the other hand there is the Dodge which, on the contrary, seems willing to follow an opposite path and disruptive, despite having always been a distinctly traditionalist brand. The US brand of the Stellantis Group, in fact, not only announced that at the end of 2023 it will remove conventional Chargers and Challengers from the lists, but also presented the prototype of a fully electric Charger. Leaving the idea that, from 2024, this concept can be translated into series production.

Called the Daytona SRT (the acronym for “Street and Racing Technology” traditionally reserved for the sportiest models of the brand), the car offers a line inspired by tradition but revolutionary mechanics. It has four-wheel drive, because it uses a front and a rear engine, and is based on a new electric architecture called Banshee at 800 volts, like that of the most performing battery-powered cars of European production such as Porsche Taycan and Audi e-tron GT (but also from other advanced cars such as Kia EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq5). This solution allows for faster reloads, better engine cooling and also lighter wiring. Like the two Germans, the Dodge provides the original solution of an electromechanical automatic gearbox, to maximize the click and efficiency, called eRupt. But this transmission could also be piloted by the driver to increase his level of involvement.

For now, the American manufacturer has not disclosed other technical data, but has stated that the Daytona SRT Concept E can cover the classic quarter mile in a “screaming” time and is more performing “in all the main parameters” of the current Charger. SRT Hellcat Redeye which, just to understand, mounts a supercharged V8 with almost 820 HP and burns the 0-100 in less than 3.5 seconds.

Among other features there are a temporary function, called PowerShot and activated by a lever on the side of the steering wheel, which causes an “explosive” increase in power output and a sound system, called Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust and patent pending, which through a amplifier mounted in the rear area, gives the car a voice similar to that of the Hellcat and even reaches 126 dB. In short: an attempt not to completely sever the bridges with the past.

Some design elements are inspired by the 1969 Charger Daytona, the first car designed for NASCAR racing capable of reaching 200 miles per hour (322 km / h). The electric Daytona SRT has a front opening called R-Wing that improves aerodynamics and increases downforce, but the whole exterior evokes the silhouette of models produced between the late 1960s and early 1960s. 70 (probably someone will remember that of the Duke brothers in the Hazzard series), which was then also broadcast to today’s Chargers and Challengers.

The interior is also quite traditional in design, although there are two 16-inch screens for the instrument cluster and 12.3-inch screens for the multimedia system, as well as an extended head-up display. The front and rear seats are made of carbon fiber.

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