Cars > Electric

All-new Dodge Charger truly needs a charger

America’s latest muscle car now has battery packs

What do you think of the Dodge Charger becoming an electric car? PHOTO FROM DODGE

Muscle or pony cars have always been about loud and powerful V8 engines proving their worth at impromptu drag races. While this is a treat for gearheads, it’s not exactly a welcome recipe for some of Mother Nature’s staunch supporters like Greenpeace. Electrification is clearly in vogue these days, which is why the Dodge Charger now has the option to run on battery power.

The two-door Daytona has a long and low profile. PHOTOS FROM DODGE

Built on Stellantis’s modern STLA Large platform, the all-new Charger ensures that it doesn’t stray away from the design cues of its predecessors. Most notably, the full-width front grille and rear lights were likely inspired by the second-generation model. The car also comes in two- and four-door versions, reflecting the various body styles of the Charger throughout its history.

Just like any muscle car, the Charger gets prominent branding. For example, it marks the return of the Fratzog logo, which used to be on Dodge performance vehicles of the past. Both the R/T and the Scat Pack variants have bespoke badging. And some of the paint jobs on offer have been creatively named like After Dark, Bludicrous, and Redeye.

The Fratzog logo was used by select Dodge models in the 1960s and the 1970s. PHOTOS FROM DODGE

As far as numbers go, the Charger will not disappoint on the blacktop. All-wheel drive is standard, so this vehicle won’t embarrass ham-fisted drivers who like to show off at car meets. Starting off the range is the R/T with 456hp. Activating the PowerShot system boosts output by 40hp, and 60mph (97km/h) is dispatched in 4.7 seconds.

Go for the 630hp Scat Pack and that speed is reached even sooner at 3.3 seconds with PowerShot turned on. This variant also gets a variety of drive modes that will allow owners to do very American things like perform donuts and burnouts. If the added muscle isn’t enough, the optional Track Package throws in a Brembo brake kit, adaptive suspension, and Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar 3 tires.

The cabin gets one retro touch in the pistol-grip transmission lever. PHOTOS FROM DODGE

Even with these healthy power figures, the electric Charger will do all its hooning without the throb of a proper piston engine. To that end, Dodge has equipped the vehicle with what it calls the Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust. This is basically a pair of external speakers that play artificial engine sounds. The American automaker claims this feature will provide noise that can match Hellcat models in terms of loudness.

Will the Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust sound artificial in practice? PHOTO FROM DODGE

The cabin gets the usual treatment for any new EV these days. Instrumentation is provided by 10.25- or 16-inch displays, and the Uconnect 5 infotainment system can be accessed via the angled 12.3-inch center screen. Paying homage to the classic Charger is the pistol-grip gear selector. Buyers have a wide variety of trim packages to choose from, and entertainment is taken care of by a nine- or 18-speaker system from Alpine.

Four-door and gas-powered models will eventually join the Charger range. PHOTOS FROM DODGE

The launch version of the all-new Charger will be the two-door Daytona, which is slated to begin serial production in the middle of this year. Four-door models will follow in early 2025. And for customers who still want a gas-powered vehicle, versions with the Hurricane twin-turbo straight-six engine in 420hp and 550hp guises will be offered in the future.

Miggi Solidum

Professionally speaking, Miggi is a software engineering dude who happens to like cars a lot. And as an automotive enthusiast, he wants a platform from which he can share his motoring thoughts with fellow petrolheads. He pens the column ‘G-Force’.