Dodge’s Speed Week started with a real product attack when we saw the Durango SRT Hellcat, Challenger Convertible, and 1970 Charger in carbon fiber. Additionally, there’s a teaser for the ultimate ICE-powered Challenger with over 900 horsepower. At the end of the livestream, company boss Tim Kuniskis made a big announcement about what we’ll see on day 2:
“We will turn the page and we will see our future – our first new electric Dodge.” He didn’t go into specifics, but logic tells us that the model he’s referring to is the 2023 Hornet. It wouldn’t have anything in common with its namesake concept from 2006 because it was a boxy minivan that was supposed to go into production before being canceled following the 2009 financial crisis.
Then what is it? Compact crossover with plug-in hybrid powertrain. It will be mechanically linked to the Alfa Romeo Tonale, with spy photos showing a very similar prototype to the Italian model. There should also be a gas-only engine in the mix as an entry-level offering, and knowing Dodge’s modus operandi, we’d expect healthy power figures from both setups.
As a refresher, the Tonale which will be sold in the United States will be an AWD special offer. The base model gets a turbocharged 2.0-liter petrol engine with 256 horsepower and 295 pound-feet (400 Newton-meters) of torque sent to both axles via a nine-speed automatic transmission.
As for the PHEV, it will combine a 1.3 liter turbo petrol engine with a 90 kilowatt electric motor for a total output of 272 hp sent through a six-speed automatic gearbox. The 15.5 kWh lithium-ion battery pack will have enough power for a range of over 30 miles without inhaling any fuel.
In other markets, Alfa Romeo also sells the Tonale with a front-wheel drive layout and even a diesel engine. It will be interesting to see the price difference between the two models considering how they will share a lot of greasy and electric parts, not to mention the design. In the case of the Alfa, sources close to the automaker have told us it will start in the high $30,000 range and work its way up to the low $50,000 range.
The Dodge partner should be more achievable, but we’ll have to wait and see about that. We’ll have all the details as soon as the livestream starts at 7pm CST.