Analysis. Social media, forums, and comments sections have all seen complaints about Dodge’s future, which many claim will be “all BEV.” In point of fact, there’s never been any indication that this is Stellantis’ plan for Dodge—only for Chrysler.
What we know so far is that Chrysler-the-marque, as opposed to the no-longer-around Chrysler-the-company, is planning to go all-electric by 2030, and at last report was only working on STLA Large—but these are subject to change. FCA US, on the other hand, was looking at being just 50% electric in 2030. That means it’ll still be 50% not-electric.
The last credible installment from our sources claimed that an LB Challenger was indeed on the way, powered by a Hurricane twin-turbo straight six engine. This is almost a “duh” for Stellantis, given the Challenger’s current popularity, the Camaro’s bowing out of the market, and the Hurricane’s power and torque. We don’t know about other power combinations, or even if the Hurricane will be part of a hybrid-electric system. The money and time put into the latest Dodge Challenger Demon (the 170), though, suggest that the Hurricane may get a hefty power boost in a future Challenger.
Stellantis does have a serious gas-mileage issue in the United States; it ends up buying economy credits from Tesla, funding a future competitor. This is not good business, but FCA took away the company’s other options when it dropped the Dart, 200, and Fiat 500; there is no truly high-mileage Mopar right now which can be sold in big numbers. The 2025 battery-electric lineup and the 2024 ProMaster BEV will help, but not enough. For that reason, we can probably expect more BEVs and PHEVs.
The Jeep Wrangler 4xe, America’s most popular PHEV, has proven that customers will go for a PHEV when the tuning and numbers are right. So does the Grand Cherokee 4xe. It seems likely that the Challenger (and Charger, if both come to fruition) will have a four-cylinder PHEV option replacing a V6; indeed, a 4xe could replace the 392 for many buyers, given its performance in the Wrangler (nearly as potent as the 392). It’s close enough, and doesn’t have the same gas-mileage penalty as a big V8.
Carlos Tavares has repeatedly expressed skepticism about moving to battery-electrics too quickly. Under his reign, PSA and now Stellantis developed and produced cars using engineering that can result in a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle or a battery-electric with relatively little change at the factory. This is one alternative—and Cummins and others are investing in getting hydrogen filling stations across the country. (Cummins is focusing on truck stops.) He’s unlikely to approve a Dodge lineup free of gasoline engines in the near term.
What’s more, if you look at the “frunk” of the Charger Daytona battery-electric, you can see that there is enough room for a gasoline powertrain. There’s a reason the car was designed the way it was. While there are advantages to a “pure” battery-electric design, it looks as though Dodge will opt for flexibility—and adapt their production to demand. If people demand battery-electrics, Dodge will be there. If they demand gasoline power, Dodge will be there, too.
Dodge is not likely to give up its dominance of muscle cars for quite a while—that’s its core owner base now. The marque has just three vehicles, and all three, in 2023, have optional Hellcats. Perhaps in 2035 Dodge will be all-electric, but that’s something to worry about in 2030, not 2023—and it may never happen.
2 thoughts on “Is Dodge using a Hurricane, or going all-BEV? (Analysis)”
I’ve commented in the past that even looking at it from a pricing thing, Chrysler “the brand” would be a better place to focus the EVs rather than Dodge. Even with the performance aspect, a Chrysler 300M with a Banshee powertrain would be in a better position to tackle cars such as the Tesla Model S Plaid or the Lucid Air than say a Dodge Charger. As of right now the EV market has two fairly distinct established sides, the premium market which is comprised of Tesla, Lucid, Mercedes, BMW and Audi, and then you have the basic market that consists of VW, and a bunch of quirky daily drivers, some of which are fast but mostly just commuters. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to see the Dodge Brand expand their lineup a bit to make themselves more relevant. I think the Hornet will be the first of a lineup of volume sellers and there should be a mixture of vehicle types that people will like so that the brand can survive. As far as the muscle cars go, I think ICE & Hybrid vehicles are going to be the way of the Muscle car future for the Mopar brand.
I made a few comments on some recent posts about my thoughts about the 2.0L 4xE being the base engine, or the entry level performance engine of the next gen Charger/Challenger/Stealth STLA:Large platform vehicles. Honestly, the 2.0L Turbo engine that powers the Jeep Wrangler (270hp/295tq) would be a decent replacement for the pentastar v6. We already know the specs 370hp/475lb-ft torque it equals the hp output of a 5.7L with the torque output of a 6.4L, the 3.0L SO, 420hp/468lb-ft of torque which puts it around the hp specs of the 6.1L SRT vehicles with more torque and of course the 3.0L HO puts out 510hp/500tq which outclasses the 392ci Hemi V8 along with it’s closest and only remaining American performance car competition, the 5.0L Dark Horse Mustang. While that is plenty potent, a performance hybrid version of the 3.0L would push the car even closer to Hellcat territory. While I doubt it would eclipse the 700hp mark, something that falls in the neighborhood of 620-630hphp pushing 620-645tq with closer to an “instant torque” feel, and tuning similar to what the Demon 170 has with the fuel system and other performance goodies with AWD would certainly make for a better balanced performance machine. With the rumors of a new Mustang Cobra coming in the near future, Dodge needs something that will compete with this car and NOT be an EV. Hybrid turbos, Direct Connection upgrades such as intakes, intercoolers, turbo-back exhaust systems, brake and drivetrain upgrades, blow off valves, suspension and chassis tuning, and even upgrades for the EV systems (similar to what the direct connection stage kits for the EV cars would be) and all kinds of other things could make for a line of performance vehicles that are even crazier than what we have right now. On top of that, we have the EV versions that are capable of over 1200hp. Not to mention there is a planned HurriCrate Cat-X engine that is est. to be around the 1000hp mark so we don’t even know what kind of technology Dodge is working on with this new engine. What we do know is that the hybrid technology will help reduce emissions while adding power and with an expanded lineup of vehicles that use smaller engines with hybrid tech, we can see the STLA:Large platform performance vehicles continue to offer the insane levels of performance Dodge is known for.
The Hurricane engine family extends beyond the two I-6 Twin turbo powerplants. The brand is also calling the new Inline-4 turbo engines hurricanes as well, which may indicate that there are more smaller performance vehicles coming from the brand as well to join the Hornet in competing in the sport compact/hot hatch/ small performance crossover arena. Dodge is already using the GLH moniker and reviving names from AMC, so I wouldn’t be shocked to see a Dart Demon, a Gremlin X, Omni GLH or even the return of a Neon SRT, powered by the 1.3L Turbo hybrid with added performance right from the factory.
Also, look at it from this perspective as well. The Jeep brand is pretty much the volume seller of the Stellantis North American umbrella of vehicles. Let’s just say for a moment, the brand dropped down to 4-engine choices for it’s more popular lineup which include the Compass, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee and the Wrangler/Gladiator. Let’s say for instance, the Compass and Cherokee get 2-engine choices, the 2.0L Hurricane (268hp/295lb-ft torque) the 1.3L Hybrid powertrain (288hp/383hp plus the 30hp boost), The 2.0L Hurricane’s performance is very close to the performance of the 3.6L Pentastar and the 1.3L Hurricane boast numbers that rival the early 5.7L Hemi V8. Remember the 05 Charger R/T only put out 340hp and 387lb-ft of torque, with the 1.3L Hybrid’s “push to pass” system, the HP numbers rise to roughly 320hp w/383tq in a vehicle that’s smaller and lighter than the first gen Charger/300. With the Grand Cherokee and Wrangler/Gladiator you have the 2.0L with 270hp/295tq (Again roughly the same performance as a 3.6L Pentastar and the 2.0L 4Xe 375hp/470tq, which again, is 5.7L Hemi horsepower with 6.4L Hemi Torque. Both Hybrid powertrains mimic V8 performance and the other two engines are as potent as the 3.6L Pentastar engine they would be replacing and all four engines would be reducing the carbon footprint of the Stellantis fleet as a whole. This saves the 3.0L Hurricanes for the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, which are said to be more efficient than the V8s they replace.
As I continue to check out the Charger Banshee concept, there is one thing that just keeps popping out at me, the letters SRT. I’m glad to see that SRT is going to live on through all of these changes. Although the SRT Team was disbanded, Stellantis has not abandoned SRT, which means we could still have these vehicles, hopefully for years to come. I had to go back and re-read several articles from when Stellantis “disbanded” the team and integrated them into the mainstream of Stellantis, basically expanding them across the board, which may even mean we could see SRT stretch back across Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Ram. Still, I wonder what these next generation Inline-6 cars are going to sound like? I can’t wait to see what Mopar Magic they use with the exhaust systems.
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