Why Are There Only 3 Dodge Models?
Many aren’t aware, but if you go to the Dodge website right now you’ll find only three vehicles available for purchase. That’s an exceptionally low number of vehicles for any automaker. When a brand as iconic as Dodge is offering so few options, how can it expect to produce good sales numbers? The only vehicles currently being sold by Dodge are the two muscle cars, Challenger and Charger, and the large three-row SUV, the Durango. One of which is also on its way out in a few years. So, why are there only three Dodge models?
What happened to the other Dodge models?
Newly in the 2021 model year, Dodge killed the Journey crossover and the Grand Caravan minivan. These models didn’t fit within the lineup of Dodge for a while, but the sales numbers kept them around. Once those began to fall, there was no reason to keep them around. Dodge says eliminating these models from the lineup was not pandemic related.
Plenty of other discontinued models have quietly gone over the years. The Dodge Sprinter was rebadged to the Mercedes Sprinter in 2009. The Dodge Nitro was discontinued in 2012, Viper in 2017, Stratus in 2006, Magnum in 2008, Dart in 2016, Caliber in 2012, and the Avenger in 2014. That’s all before counting the Ram pickup trucks leaving the lineup. When Ram separated from Dodge to become its own entity in 2009, it took with it a few truck models. Models have come and gone since the beginning of Dodge’s existence. However, more and more have disappeared without replacement in recent years.
When the Durango is gone, two will remain
That’s right, of the three remaining Dodge models, we already know another is on its way out. The Durango will cease to exist after the 2024 model year, Stellantis announced recently. The Dodge Durango shares its platform with the Jeep Grand Cherokee, so removing the Durango means the company wants to make room for more Grand Cherokee sales. What is Dodge going to do when all that’s left in its lineup is the Challenger and Charger muscle cars?
One of the options for a Durango replacement could be the Citroen C5 Aircross and DS7 Crossback. Citroen falls under the same parent company as Dodge, and its vehicles could fairly easily be rebadged as Dodge models. The same goes for models from both Chrysler and Ram, though Chrysler doesn’t have many options left either. A smaller Ram truck rebadged into Dodge’s lineup could work well. Competing with the likes of the Ford Ranger and Toyota Tacoma with an off-road trim sounds like fun.
Is Dodge making electric vehicles?
MotorTrend spoke with Tim Kuniskis, who oversees Dodge for FCA North America. He claimed the three-vehicle lineup was nothing to worry about. Kuniskis said these vehicles give Dodge a “unique and separate identity in the marketplace.” The Dodge lineup currently fills the roles of muscle cars and a large SUV. Nothing else customers want is available from Dodge, and the automaker seems alright with that. One option many other companies are taking is to enter the electric vehicle market, could that be Dodge’s next logical step?
Kuniskis told MotorTrend that Dodge does not need to “fully shift to battery electric vehicles” because of the power gas-electric vehicles are capable of providing. Dodge clearly wants to stick with the power the brand is known for. Looking at the power of vehicles like Tesla Plaid models, Ford Lightning, and others, we think an electric Hellcat motor would do really well. The same people buying current Hellcat Challengers might not be interested, but many others would come around. Still, Dodge will likely be forced into the fully electric market eventually, even if it is a bit further away than other brands.