As Dodge kills off traditional muscle cars, Polestar is making an electric one

It’s the end of an era for Dodge (STLA) —and the beginning of one for electric upstart Polestar (PSNY).

During Dodge Speed Week in Detroit, the automaker announced it was ending production of its popular Dodge Challenger and Charger muscle cars with the 2023 model year. Dodge will, however, release 7 special edition models, with details coming later this year.

The muscle cars, with versions like the Demon, Hellcat, Redeye, Scat Pack, Shaker, and Jailbreak have been in production since 2005, a very long time in the automotive world.

The Dodge Charger and Dodge Challenger, in current form, are coming to an end, and the Dodge brand is seizing the opportunity to celebrate in true, over-the-top Dodge style. The Dodge 2023 lineup will pay homage to the muscle car pair with seven special models, the return of a rainbow of heritage colors (including Plum Crazy, shown at left), an expansion of SRT Jailbreak models, a commemorative Last Call underhood plaque for all 2023 Charger and Challenger vehicles and a new, customer-focused vehicle allocation process.
The Dodge Charger and Dodge Challenger, in current form, are coming to an end.

“We are celebrating the end of an era — and the start of a bright new electrified future — by staying true to our brand,” said Tim Kuniskis, Dodge CEO in a statement. “[Dodge] will mark the last of our iconic Charger and Challenger nameplates in their current form in the same way that got us here, with a passion both for our products and our enthusiasts.”

For a company that only offers 3 models - the Charger, Challenger, and Durango - killing off two of those models leaves Dodge at a crossroads.

On the flipside, Swedish EV-maker Polestar is making news of its own, announcing its own "muscle car," if you will, with electric power.

Earlier today Polestar confirmed its O₂ concept roadster will be put into production, now dubbed the Polestar 6. The car is expected to launch in 2026, with reservations starting today.

Polestar O₂ Roadster, soon to be the Polestar 6
Polestar O₂ Roadster, soon to be the Polestar 6

“With the overwhelming consumer and press response, we took the decision to put this stunning roadster into production and I am so excited to make it a reality,” said Thomas Ingenlath, Polestar CEO in a statement. “Polestar 6 is a perfect combination of powerful electric performance and the thrill of fresh air with the top down.”

The Polestar 6 comes packing some impressive electric muscle beneath its sporty metal skin. The powertrain features an 800-volt architecture with dual motors creating 884hp and 663 lb-ft of torque. Polestar says car will reach 0-60 mph in 3.2 seconds.

At the moment, there are no electric two-door coupes on the market that don’t cost hundreds of thousands (or millions) of dollars, and no electric convertibles at all. In what could be a coup for Polestar, it may have the only electric roadster on the market when the Polestar 6 comes out in 2026.

Now Porsche says it will be making an electric version of its Boxster convertible, however CEO Oliver Blume has said it will be coming mid-decade, with no firm launch date. GM also says an electric Corvette is coming but offered no details or launch date. The Corvette is traditionally offered with a removable top or as a standalone convertible.

While we may not see a true convertible muscle car to challenge the Polestar 6 for some time, don’t count out Dodge quite yet — the king of muscle cars has said previously it has an electric muscle car in the works.

And maybe there will be a drop top Dodge as well, for fans of American muscle dreaming of a cruise down Detroit’s iconic Woodward Avenue.

Pras Subramanian is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. You can follow him on Twitter and on Instagram.

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