Dodge is not entering the world of electric vehicles quietly. We mean that literally, because the Dodge Charger Daytona Concept EV you see here actually has an exhaust system. It’s called a Fratzonic chambered exhaust, though it’s not entirely clear if it’s driven by the… Banshee powertrain. Fratzonic? Banshee? Clearly, Dodge is working hard to establish its electric future as something very different from the competition.
And the future is what we are looking at here. Ironically, Dodge is pulling hard on its illustrious muscle car past for help, because this Charger Daytona concept car is an ode to the classic 1968-70 two-door model. We’ll start with the design, because there has plenty of retro influence to enjoy and Dodge offers no range, speed or performance information except to say that this electric concept is faster than a Hellcat.
So let’s zoom in on the wide face and the flat hood of the concept, which is clearly inspired by the old Charger. But there’s a major twist in the game, as the hood isn’t actually flat at all. It’s deeply scalloped, letting air flow through the grille while riding over what Dodge calls an R-Wing. Yes, the big fender on this Charger Daytona is actually at the frontimproving downforce and aerodynamic performance.
A more classic Charger influence can be seen in the doors, although the flush door handles provide a decidedly modern touch. However, you won’t find a fastback rear clip with a trunk. A tailgate opens to reveal a cavernous space which, with the rear seats folded down, gives this muscle car “unexpected utility and storage capacity”. You’ll also see a curious triangle-shaped badge in the retro-styled taillight assembly – this is the Fratzog badge, originally used on Dodge vehicles in the 60s and 70s with no particular meaning. Now it represents a fusion of the automaker’s past performance with an electric future.
You might also have noticed the illuminated Hellcat badges on the fenders, but those aren’t Hellcats. They’re Banshees, because that’s what powers the Charger Daytona SRT concept. Dodge doesn’t provide any details on this electric powertrain except that it’s an 800V system and it powers all four wheels. There is also an in-game transmission called to burst offering multiple gears with distinct shift points and a button to press for a brief boost of extra power. How much power? How many speeds? Dodge isn’t talking, but the company promises a brand-true “electromechanical shifting experience.”
That’s also the reasoning behind the Fratzonic chambered exhaust, and yes, that’s the actual name Dodge uses. It’s billed as an industry-first system that pushes “performance sound through an amplifier and tuning chamber located at the rear of the vehicle.” What is the real nature of sound? Again, this is something Dodge has yet to explain, but we asked for a better answer.
By definition, exhaust in this context is a certain measure of gas or air expelled from a machine. Capturing electric motor noises and amplifying them with a few tweaks could be cool. But as things stand, Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust sounds like a fancy way to describe a big bass cannon pumping out artificial V8 noise. In any case, the sound reaches 126 dB, which is apparently as loud as a V8 Hellcat under throttle. We’ll absolutely step in with an update if Dodge responds with any details on this curious system.
Things aren’t quite so strange inside, where you’ll find a decidedly sporty interior that offers a rather conventional layout. A central 12.3-inch screen faces the driver, with a 16-inch digital instrument cluster and 8-inch head-up display providing vital vehicle information. The classic wide Charger grille is also a theme for the interior trim, visible in the illuminated texture that wraps around the cockpit. A large center console houses a shifter reminiscent of the pistol-grip shifters of yesteryear.
It’s not an all-digital affair either. Besides the shifter, there are touch controls for the climate settings below the touchscreen. Features of the SRT steering wheel include radio functions and fingertip control of the Charger Daytona’s four drive modes – Auto, Sport, Track and Drag. A panoramic roof lets in plenty of light for the driver and three passengers.
So now for the big question. Is it a near-production vehicle or an abstract concept? It’s also an unknown at this point, though it’s safe to assume that at least some aspects of the Charger Daytona SRT will come to life. And with current-generation Charger and Challenger production ending in December 2023, that could be sooner rather than later. Expect more information on Dodge’s electrified future in the coming months.