Let’s talk muscle cars! …Sort of. Dodge just released their first vision of E-Muscle to the world with the Dodge Charger Daytona SRT Concept. And by all accounts, it looks like a badass new Dodge muscle car… except for one thing… the electric engine. So let’s talk about it. Can a muscle car be EV?
First off – appearance.
Beauty is subjective, but by most accounts, Dodge nailed the design. It’s sinister; it’s badass; it’s disruptive; and it’s NOT a Ford Mustang Mach-E! So thank you Muscle-Car Jesus for that win. The R-Wing front spoiler design is killer, and we hope the car makes it into production without getting too watered down. This is a concept that I can’t wait to see in person. It looks menacing in the black shadows. But I’m excited to see it in the iconic Mopar shades of lime, plum, orange, etc. Styling-wise, it seems like Dodge is dead-on track.
Dodge E-Muscle should be damn fast.
But c’mon, what higher-end EV ISN’T fast? With EVs, it’s not how fast you go… it’s HOW YOU GO FAST! Dodge is claiming that the Challenger Daytona SRT Concept outperforms the supercharged Hellcat in ‘key aspects of performance’. But it’s also all-wheel-drive. So honesty, it shouldn’t be that hard to outperform a Hellcat in ‘key aspects of performance’. Seems a little vague. But the true mission for Dodge – is to capture the FULL ESSENCE of a muscle car… and do it with an EV. That’s not gonna be easy, but there’s honestly no one better for the job than Dodge. What Dodge DOES NOT need to end up making – is another point-n-shoot EV. Leave that to Tesla, Audi, Porsche… and the other gentleman brands. Dodge needs to come to market with a brute obnoxious display of EV power. Can it be done? Or are even the fastest production EVs just tame by nature? It’s time for Mopar to make history.
Please don’t gimmick!
The Dodge Charger Daytona SRT Concept has a few ‘concept’ gimmicks that are making us cringe.
1) The exhaust: EVs don’t make exhaust! So don’t feel obligated to put a fake/amplified exhaust note on an EV to synthesize what fast cars USED TO SOUND LIKE. And please, no vague/edgy PR names like Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust. It’s not an exhaust; it’s electronics. So if E-Muscle is the future… f*cking own it. The mission here – is to find the new sensations, expressions, and displays of muscle in the EV realm that make our hair stand up. Dive in like hot-rodders… and find it.
2) Phony transmission shifts: Banging gears and slamming heads into headrests is cool… but it’s not ‘EV’. That stuff is real & authentic in the ICE world of yesteryear. But EVs don’t need to shift. I mean – they could & that would be awesome. But don’t fake it with electronics. I know this is still just a concept car. But again – the concept is to not fake the old cool… but to find the new cool.
Look – we know EV isn’t Dodge’s first choice.
Dodge says, “Performance made us do it.” But bullshit. Government mandates made you do it lol. We’ll say that for you Dodge, because we know you can’t. Dodge was forced into their current situation here. For better or worse, EV is happening… at least in the immediate future. And Dodge could not hold out forever. If they held out too long, they would be too late into the EV market… and it would seem as if they were copycatting and/or following. That’s not really Dodge. So by diving in now with E-Muscle… Dodge has an opportunity to flip the entire EV world on its head… right at the crest of the wave. Up until this point, EVs have been soft. Dodge has the opportunity to change that & write a new chapter of automotive hot-rodding history. But no faking! If Dodge is gonna pull this off… it HAS to be done authentically. There’s a real fine line between goosebumps & gimmicks. Dodge must stay on the right side of that line.
Dodge is already too late to the EV game. By the time this car hits the market other manufacturers will have entire portfolios for sale. Can they compete with a single coupe offering when others are flooding the market with much more popular SUVs, Crossovers, and Trucks? Too little too late. They also stuck a transmission on this thing. That’s just an unnecessary lump of lead for it to lug around. The beauty of an EV is it’s mechanical simplicity. Why would you toss in a complex bucket of wear components by building in a transmission?!? This article implies that it’s just an electronic mimic to recreate the “feel” of shifting, but the official reveal says it’s an actual transmission. I’m hoping that it IS just an electronic facsimile. Having said that I do feel it is a thing of beauty and I think the fake exhaust is pretty darn cool. I hope Dodge can stay alive long enough to make these things, just without a transmission.
I love the design of this but I’m like everyone else on the fake ricey exhaust sound. That does not need to be added. Can Dodge beat Ford and GM to the line in making a muscle EV, seems like they are giving it a go. With Ford focusing on SUVs and Trucks, when will we see a legit EV Mustang… no not the crossover thingy but a legit Mustang. GM has shown up to the party yet either, with all focus on the new Corvette and it’s future, what is the future of the Camaro? Are they working on an EV Muscle car or are they not going to put their name in the hat as well. EV is the future of the automobile industry and I hate it but our generation will have to come to terms that time is changing.