Many people have come around to the bold direction of the new Ford Mustang Mach-E, which builds on the pedigree of the Mustang coupe sports car with a rear- or all-wheel drive electric crossover. Despite the controversy, it’s a good car with great performance, but the real EV muscle is just around the corner.
We’ve been quite busy combing through this week’s big Stellantis announcement with a roadmap for new electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles built on four new platforms. The U.S. is expected to get eight new models in the next five years, with over 50 globally coming across the conglomerate’s various automakers made up of Fiat and Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Citroën and DS, Lancia, Maserati, Opel, Peugeot and Vauxhall.
While each brand’s new EV motto is very silly, there were also a lot of product announcements. Jeep is developing a curious new all-electric off-roader that appears to be larger than the Wrangler. There was also a look at a EV crossover from Chrysler seemingly styled after the recent 200 sedan and Pacifica van design approach. The tease for the upcoming EV Ram truck was a little more interesting, but I’m most excited that the brands aren’t giving up on performance cars.
So far, Stellantis has confirmed two new all-electric muscle cars are in development, and also offered teasers of both new models — one for the U.S. and one for Europe, it would seem. The first is from Dodge, which is referring to the new model so far as “eMuscle,” and is due for 2024.
The teaser image appears to show the front end of the future EV with a prominently glowing Fratzog emblem centered that’s a callback to the triangular motif Dodge used to decorate its models in the 1960s and 1970s.
Based on the Stellantis presentation, the model will be built on a platform capable of up to 500 miles of range, and probably also a ton of power and torque. It’s not clear if this muscle car will wear the Charger or Challenger nameplate, or will finally debut the long-rumored Barracuda or Cuda nameplate, and we also don’t know if it’ll be two or four doors yet.
The Dodge model likely wouldn’t be sold over in Europe. Enter Opel with a reinvented all-electric Manta muscle car also announced this week. The car was apparently inspired by the Manta GSe electric restomod project the automaker revealed earlier this year.
While it would make some sense for the Dodge and Opel to potential be very similar cars under the skin, it’s possible the Manta may take a tamer and potentially smaller approach. So far, our only potential glimpse is this tiny render of the lights under a sheet from product roadmap graphic:
The four Stellantis platforms are for small, medium, large and frame (so trucks and vans, etc.) vehicle segments. Auto News Europe reports it’s likely that the latter two are targeted for the U.S. market with larger vehicles and high-horsepower applications that require more battery allocation. The small and medium platforms are likely for more of the smaller European offerings and premium vehicles across the brands, and that could include the new Manta.
If the Opel Manta EV does get one of the smaller platforms, it would still likely have a claimed minimum range of just over 300 miles, and it was announced the model would go on sale by 2030.
What’s funny about all of this is that totally plain-faced non-macho EVs out there, things like the Tesla Model X minivan, are total straight-line monsters an will roast most cars out there that would qualify as “real muscle.” But if you’re Dodge or Opel, what other options do you have but pump up your retro image?