Sources inside Stellantis say the gas-powered Dodge muscle car isn't dead yet and will live alongside the electric muscle car.
In early August, a rumor surfaced that both the Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger would enter a new generation alongside the first electric muscle car and feature V8 engines. This turned out to be false as Dodge confirmed to CarBuzz that the Charger/Challenger on their current platform - Hemi V8 included - were dead after 2023, and the replacement would be electric.
"The Charger/Challenger platform and its HEMI power go away after 2023. The unnamed replacement [what is now known to be the Charger Daytona SRT Concept] will be BEV."
However, just as quickly as that statement was issued, a new rumor started circulating. According to Stellantis sources close to Mopar Insider, combustion muscle cars aren't dead after all - they just won't have V8s. Allegedly, the new 2024 Charger and Challenger will be sold in ICE and BEV form. The V8 is dead, but the new muscle cars could have another potent engine instead.
Reportedly, the new cars will have two variations of the same engine: Stellantis' new Hurricane inline-six turbocharged engine.
The standard output (SO) version of the Hurricane should put out around 400 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. The muscle car-minded among you will note that this is already more powerful than Dodge's 5.7-liter Hemi, which pushes out 395 hp and 410 lb-ft.
A more hardcore high output (HO) version could effectively replace Dodge's 6.4 Hemi, which in the Challenger 392, is pumping 485 hp and 475 lb-ft. The HO Hurricane, by contrast, could push roughly 500 hp and 475 lb-ft. Mopar Insiders alleges the reason for the switch to the Hurricane is, predictably, emissions. Both trims of the inline six put out 15% fewer tailpipe emissions than the Hemis, and do so while using less fuel. Then again, that isn't exactly hard. We got a whopping 15 mpg in our Challenger 392 test car, and that had an automatic.
Still, we have our doubts. Are the Hurricane engines being used to placate the gas-crazed masses that are surely fuming over the death of the Hemi? Perhaps the emissions numbers work, with the new Dodge Hornet propping up the brand's CAFE figures. If that is the case, we don't see Dodge outright lying to us when asked about the future of gas-powered Chargers and Challengers.
When reached for comment, a Dodge spokesperson told CarBuzz that the brand "[does] not comment on rumors or speculation about future product." Considering the brand was fully willing to confirm the V8 was dead and the successor to the current Challenger/Charger would be BEV, we know this isn't strictly true, which leads us to believe there could be a thread of truth to these new rumors. Time will tell...