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DODGE CHIEF SAYS THE NEW CHARGER DAYTONA EV WILL BE ‘THE ULTIMATE PERFORMANCE MUSCLE CAR’

Getting red-blooded muscle car fans to go along with the industry-wide trend toward electrification is a tough sell, as Dodge’s Chief Exec Tim Kuniskis knows all too well. Ford, rather cleverly, managed to draw an obvious distinction between its practical, family-friendly Mustang Mach-E electric utility vehicle and the more enthusiast-focused, ICE-only Mustang coupe. Dodge, on the other hand, is hoping that a significant number of crossover-eschewing muscle car lovers will forgive the electric Charger Daytona its emissions-free propulsion in light of its mind-shattering performance and undeniable Detroit muscle sensibilities.

Simply put, when it launches later this year, the 2024 Dodge Charger Daytona Scat Pack will be “the ultimate performance muscle car” anywhere in the world, says Kuniskis – until the range-topping Banshee launches later down the road, that is. Fitted with a Stage 2 kit as standard, the launch edition Scat Pack will out-accelerate the Hellcat Redeye Widebody, leveraging 670 horsepower and 305/325-section-width tires – the widest staggered set ever fitted to a factory Charger – to complete the sprint to 60 in an expected 3.3 seconds and blast through the quarter-mile in 11.5. Electric or not, those are some serious stats.

Both launch versions of the 2024 Dodge Charger Daytona EV boast the same potent 400V battery pack.

Kuniskis refers to the unveiling of the electric Charger Daytona SRT Concept some 30 months ago as “the day everyone thought I was going to be fired.” On that day, he claimed that Dodge would “never market an electric car,” before clarifying: “We will market a better muscle car with performance that happens to be enabled” by powertrain electrification. That appears to have been Dodge’s guiding principle throughout the development of the new Charger.

“Every choice we made on this car hurts efficiency,” joked Kuniskis.

That extends beyond the characteristically wide, grippy tires to the design – something that was very much guided by aerodynamics, according to Exterior Design chief Scott Krugger, but still leaves the Charger Daytona as “probably one of the widest cars on the road.” He and the rest of the team studied rare muscle cars and exotic concepts from the automaker’s past for inspiration for the new Charger, of which he said “[two] of the big things we took away: proportion, and presence.” No “primary” source of inspiration for the team was ever indicated, but notably flanking the new Dodge Charger at its reveal was an example of the super-rare 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, the predecessor to the iconic Plymouth Superbird.

The new 2024 Dodge Charger is “probably one of the widest cars on the road,” says its exterior designer.

And then, there’s the sound. Arguably one of the hardest things to give up in the transition away from internal combustion is the bone-chilling roar of a big, beefy performance V8. It’s a sensation that no pure-electric powertrain can ever hope to match – so Dodge found a cheat code, fitting the new Charger with a synthetic exhaust note generation system dubbed “Fratzonic”. It’s a “revolutionary system,” says Chief Engineer Audrey Moore, which will “give our customers what they want.”

The Fratzonic system uses in effect an actual, functioning chambered exhaust along with its note-generating transducers, making it sound fuller and more authentic than could be done with speakers alone. At full chat, it’s as loud as the outgoing SRT Hellcat, and it responds in real time to speed and throttle position much like a real combustion exhaust system. Yet getting it exactly right was of the utmost importance to Team Charger; “We’ve changed it like… a hundred times,” says Tim Kuniskis. The reason it was such an important detail to nail? Kuniskis says that for performance drivers, “it subliminally makes you feel more comfortable.”

Dodge’s “revolutionary” Fratzonic chambered exhaust gives the EV an authentic-sounding howl.

Taken together, all of this makes the new Dodge Charger Daytona about the furthest thing from a lifeless, zero-emissions compliance car – the sort of vehicle Dodge’s CEO refers to sarcastically as a “jelly bean,” after its slippery albeit vague design – as can be found. Dodge’s big gamble is that all of this will be enough to woo brand stalwarts, who helped propel the previous-generation Charger and Challenger to new heights in the American muscle car sales race.

And even if it isn’t, Dodge still has the new petrol-fueled Charger to keep muscle diehards interested.

Asked whether the Banshee would definitively be the top-performing model in the Charger range, or whether another, even higher performance internal combustion model might take back the crown later on down the line, Dodge’s CEO remarked simply that the Banshee was planned to be the reigning champ for the near future. “That’s not to say… that we won’t go and beat it.”



This article was originally published by a
www.musclecarsandtrucks.com . Read the Original article here. .

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