We had a chance to sneak into the LA Auto Show ahead of press day to get a look at some of the new vehicles and mobility solutions, and one thing stuck out like a sore thumb: The new Dodge Charger SRT Concept…
We last saw the Dodge Charger SRT concept with 800V Banshee drivetrain in August complete with fake exhaust with fake muscle car noise coming out the back. Jamie described the killer feature here:
The Fratzonic exhaust can produce up to 126dB of sound, equivalent sound levels to the Dodge Hellcat – and above the 120dB threshold that can cause immediate damage to unprotected ears (sigh).
Amusingly, that is just the beginning of the fake muscle car attributes they’ve packed into this monstrosity.
Thanks to the placard, we have some more details on the fakery.
Along with the patented “R-Wing” front spoiler that makes the front end look a lot less sleek and aerodynamic than it actually is, Dodge has named its fake gear shifting “eRupt.”
eRupt, not disrupt
The eRupt transmission is described as a “Multi-speed transmission with and electro-mechanical shifting experience that’s pure Dodge.” So it is a fake shifter. No disagreements here. Dodge previously described it this way:
eRupt transmission: a multi-speed electro-mechanical transmission intended to deliver distinct shift-points, rather than smooth transitions from one gear to the next, giving the same “jerking” feeling of gear shifts in a gas car – and a “push-to-pass” button for a quick boost of power.
Top comment by Huw Thomas
I don't see the issue with this strategy personally. People buy muscle cars because they want the muscle car experience. And the normal EV experience is not it. The EV drivetrain may be as fast, and have more torque and be more efficient, but it doesn't make it more desirable to these types of customers. It's a bit like how a Model 3 may be as fast as a Ferrari, but if you want a Ferrari, you're not going to buy a 4 door family saloon instead. So if Dodge can design an EV that provides the muscle car experience that these people want, then this model will be successful. The key thing is that it will encourage people who would never consider an EV to actually see there is one that may be what they want. These gimmicky features probably wont stay around forever once manufacturers have come up with more authentic ways to deliver the same experience, but if they help EV uptake in the brand new EV muscle car market, then they can only be a good thing
Even though this thing looks like the fever dream of a Mopar flunky focus group, it does seem to speak to a specific crowd that will appreciate the speed of electric but not want to let go of annoying pedestrians and neighbors with loud noise.
It will also allow a microscopic two-door cockpit to co-exist with a huge footprint, even with the advantages of not having to house a huge Hemi under the hood. Perhaps we’re going to see the mother of all frunks?
Maybe Dodge is onto something here? I’m hoping to see Dodge recreate pollution and “coal-rolling” by installing an aftermarket smoke machines and oil leak on the driveway with some environmentally conscious squid ink.
All that said (and kidding aside), even if I’m not in this vehicle’s demographic, I really love the look of this vehicle, and if it gets more people into the electric vehicle tent then I’m good with it. And what better name than “Charger” for this thing? Rock on, Dodge!
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