The end of the muscle car is near... or is it?
Crack open your automotive history books, kids – today we're talking about the Dodge Challenger. The beloved muscle car – of which Dodge sold a surprising 66,716 examples in 2018 – is finally getting an update. After chugging along mostly unchanged for more than a decade, new reports hint at a hybrid model.
The Detroit News reports that the next Dodge Challenger will get an electric boost. In an interview with the publication, CEO Mike Manley said the current platform will be get swapped for new lightweight technologies that should make room for electrification. Early speculators suggest FCA's 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine with electric boost will make its way under the Dodge's base Challenger bonnet, which should start at around $30,000 in the U.S. or approximately £23,000 at the current exchange rate.
"The reality is those platforms and that technology we used does need to move on. They can't exist as you get into the middle-2020s," Manley said at the Detroit auto show. "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."
But don't think the Challenger is alone. Ford, we know, is adding a Mustang-based electric SUV to its lineup. The Corvette, too, will go hybrid with the arrival of the mid-engined "Zora" sometime this year. Rumour has it the electrified mid-engined Corvette could produce up to 1,000 horsepower.
As Manley states in the interview, "electrification will certainly be part of the formula that says what is American muscle in the future." You'll probably have to wait a bit, though for a new Dodge Challenger to arrive. The company promises the revamped muscle car in the mid-2020s.