renderings by suzq044, phantomex, Hemiman876. Updated August 2015.
From 2012, there was talk of a new mid-sized rear-drive car for Dodge and Alfa Romeo, eventually confirmed in mid-2013 by Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne himself. The single “D-RWD” platform expanded in scope to become a modular platform and architecture to underpin not just Alfa Romeos and Dodges, but possibly Chryslers and Jeeps, and in all sizes — not just midsized cars.
The original plan, confirmed by Ralph Gilles, was to create a 2014 Barracuda SRT8 based on the new Challenger. The 6.2 liter supercharged Hemi, rated at 707 hp, remains and is used in the 2015 Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger.
The on-again, off-again Dodge Barracuda is apparently “on again,” to give Dodge a muscle car sized closer to the Camaro and Mustang. Reports from the 2015 Nevada dealer show indicate that it has modern styling, with cues from the 1999 Dodge Charger concept, and is smaller than the current Challenger.
The car is planned as both a coupe and convertible, and will likely use a twin-turbo V6 engine as its top powerplant, generating more power than the current 5.7 Hemi but probably less than the 392. Responsiveness should be strong depending on what technologies are used; an electric motor or small “startup” turbocharger would provide for nearly instant-on acceleration.
In 2012, we were told that Barracuda styling was already in progress, with inside reports saying it was much more modern than the Challenger, with only a few “Barracuda cues.” In April 2013, we were told that some body parts were being made for testing.
The 2015 Dodge Barracuda (regardless of the name) seemed to show up on Chrysler’s long-term plans as a new model. However, it is missing from the 2014 five year plan.
Now come the big questions: will this car be produced as a Dodge? And will it really be called Barracuda?
In June 2013, we were told that the name Barracuda had been dropped, after enthusiasts were less than enthusiastic about re-use of the name by Dodge, on a car that bore little outward resemblance to the original.
As for a new midsized sedan, that looks extremely likely, most likely to carry the Dodge Avenger name.
See our FauxPar feature on recurring rumors that the Cuda is coming soon.
The original Plymouth Barracuda was not a muscle car at first; a Valiant with a fastback rear, Barracuda was praised for its fine “European style” handling. Some critics said the Formula S version could beat comparable German cars on twists and turns. In 1970, the name was moved over to a brand new car, largely so Plymouth could stuff the big 440 and 426 Hemi engines into it; ironically, the Plymouth Duster, which had the same formula as the older Barracudas, was a major sales success... with nothing larger than a 340 under the hood.
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