Dodge Charger Daytona SRT Concept Debuts With "Fratzonic" EV Exhaust
It's a preview of electric performance in Dodge's post-Hellcat era, which apparently includes plenty of amplified noise. Dodge isn't stepping quietly into the world of electric vehicles. 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're 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 two-door model from 1968 through 1970. We'll start with the design, because there's plenty of retro influence to appreciate and Dodge doesn't offer information regarding range, speed, or performance, other than to say this electric concept is faster than a Hellcat.
So let's zoom in on the concept's wide face and flat hood, which clearly draws inspiration from the old Charger. But there's a major twist in play, because the hood actually isn't flat at all. It's deeply scalloped, allowing air through the grille while also passing over top what Dodge calls an R-Wing. Yes, the big wing on this Charger Daytona is actually at the front, enhancing downforce and aerodynamic performance.
More classic Charger influence is seen in the doors, though flush door handles are a thoroughly modern touch. You won't find a fastback rear clip with a trunk, however. A hatchback opens to reveal a cavernous space that, with the rear seats folded, gives this muscle car "unexpected utility and storage capacity." You'll also see a curious triangle-shaped badge in the retro-styled taillight assembly – that's the Fratzog badge, originally used on Dodge vehicles through the '60s and '70s without specific meaning. Now, it represents a fusion of the automaker's performance past with an electric future.
You may have also noticed the illuminated Hellcat badges on the fenders, but those aren't Hellcats. They are Banshees, because that's what powers the Charger Daytona SRT Concept. Dodge doesn't provide any details on this electric powertrain, save to say that it's an 800V system and it powers all four wheels. There's also a transmission in play called eRupt offering multiple speeds with distinct shift points and a button to push for a brief shot of extra power. How much power? How many speeds? Dodge isn't talking, but the company promises an "electro-mechanical shifting experience" that's true to the brand.
That's also the reasoning behind the Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust, and yes, that's the actual name Dodge is using. 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 actual nature of the sound? Again, that's something Dodge has yet to explain but we've asked point-blank for a better answer.
By definition, exhaust in this context is some measure of gas or air expelled from a machine. Capturing some whooshing electric motor sounds and amplifying them with some tweaks could be cool. But as it stands right now, Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust sounds like a snazzy way to describe a big bass cannon pumping out artificial V8 noise. In any case, the sound reaches 126 dB, which apparently is as loud as a Hellcat V8 under throttle. We will absolutely jump in with an update should Dodge respond with details on this curious system.
Things aren't nearly as strange inside, where you'll find a decidedly sporty interior that offers a rather conventional layout. A 12.3-inch center screen is angled towards the driver, with a 16-inch digital instrument cluster and an 8-inch heads-up display delivering vital vehicle information. The wide classic Charger grille is also a theme for interior trim, seen in the illuminated texture wrapping through the cockpit. A large center console is home to a shift stalk reminiscent of the pistol-grip shifters of old.
It's not an entirely digital affair, either. Aside from the shifter, there are tactile controls for climate settings beneath the touchscreen. Features on 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 plenty of light in for the driver and three passengers.
So now for the big question. Are we looking at a near-production vehicle or an abstract concept? That's also an unknown at this point, though it's safe to assume at least some aspects of the Charger Daytona SRT will come to life. And with the current-generation Charger and Challenger ending production in December 2023, that could be sooner rather than later. Expect more information on Dodge's electrified future in the coming months.