Why Dodge Is Discontinuing Its Best-Selling Challenger And Charger Muscle Cars

Is the U.S. automaker really killing off its V8-powered cars at the peak of its powers?

Dodge will formally discontinue the gas-powered Challenger and Charger from its range by the end of 2023. Dodge made the announcement at a crucial juncture for the industry as more vehicles with electric powertrains are being produced by automakers.

What aficionados are currently debating is a potential future in which Dodge, a brand long associated with modern American muscle vehicles (which have often been ICE-powered), may switch its portfolio to a hybrid and electric powertrain type. Many are curious as to why Dodge is discontinuing its muscle vehicles at the height of their potential given that the Dodge Challenger will surpass the Ford Mustang as the best-selling muscle car in the United States in 2021.

Why Is Dodge Discontinuing The Challenger And Charger?

In a December 2021 interview with Motor Authority, Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis made a suggestion that the internal combustion engine of the company was coming to an end. The American manufacturer soon after included its Street & Racing Technology (SRT) branch into its international engineering team. The company’s fan base was alarmed as a result, with many believing that Dodge’s performance line was coming to an end.

Soon after, Kuniskis tried to allay fans’ worries in an interview with Autoweek. He argued that SRT was not being dissolved by Stellantis, the parent company of Dodge. He also provided more evidence that an electric Dodge future was rapidly arriving.

Finally, Dodge said that the existing ICE-powered editions of the Challenger and Charger models will be discontinued in 2023. The company is fittingly paying respect to the cherished muscle vehicles with “Last Call” inscriptions beneath the hoods as a suitable send-off.

For aficionados, this string of incidents has generated a lot of questions. Why is Dodge discontinuing the Charger and Challenger? Why is it avoiding internal combustion engines? When examining the November 2021 report from Greenpeace East Asia, the cause becomes more apparent.

Stellaris was placed second-to-last (after Toyota) in Greenpeace’s review for its efforts to reduce carbon emissions. Stellaris had already indicated before the publication of that research that it will right the ship by July 2021 with the introduction of eight future electric cars and a concerted effort to enhance solid-state batteries.

What Is Going To Replace The Dodge Challenger And Charger?

During Stellantis’s EV Day the previous year, Dodge teased their first all-electric muscle vehicle. Just over a year later, Dodge formally unveiled the impending concept car, known as the Charger Daytona SRT, to preview its purported V8-free future. The Charger Daytona SRT will carry over some of the characteristics that make American muscle vehicles so enticing in an effort to keep devoted admirers. The “R-Wing” front aerodynamic wing is an homage to the original Charger Daytona, and the “BEV exhaust” is a first for the industry and is meant to compete with the SRT Hellcat.

Dodge hasn’t said if the Challenger and Charger will receive full replacements, but the idea offers one approach the carmaker may follow. The 2023 Dodge Challenger and 2023 Dodge Charger models will be the final chance for aficionados to buy these cherished muscle vehicles, that much is clear.

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