Dodge Charger may or may not get a turbocharged six-cylinder

There are rumors the six could step in to replace the venerable 5.7L Hemi, but Dodge says it’s invested more in switching to EVs

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Gearheads of a certain, um, vintage certainly associate Dodge six-cylinder engines with the ‘Leaning Tower of power’, or the so-called Slant-Six mill of decades ago. However, if a new report is correct, there will be another inline six-cylinder living under the hood of certain Pentastar vehicles.

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Sources quoted by brand fansite StellPower claim that a new 3.0L turbo inline six engine is on the horizon and will be deployed for the first time in a range of rear-wheel drive vehicles. Among the recipients could be the next-generation Charger and Challenger, plus which variants (300-based SUV, anyone?) are built on the bones of that platform.

Signs point to the existence of both petrol and hybrid-powered options, both backed by an automatic transmission.

The report goes on to say that this engine (or its hybrid variant) could take over the legendary 5.7L Hemi V8 in the Stellantis range, thanks to similar horsepower and a wider torque band. While a blown-up I6 will certainly have a different personality, both in terms of power delivery and exhaust note, than the mighty Hemi, there’s no doubt that the engine is long overdue for a shake-up. Your author says this with fondness, as he has owned two late-model Mopars with this exact grinder. The 5.7L has been stagnant for far too long in terms of power.

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[Editor’s note: Dodge seems to be officially denying any rumours of a new gasoline-powered six, telling Carscoops “The Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger vehicle platforms as you know them today, along with the Hellcat powertrain, will continue production through 2023. In 2024, Dodge will transition to new platforms, new electrified muscle cars (the next generation of that platform will be a BEV, which will be shown in concept-car form Q1 or Q2 2022).” When pushed to clarify whether the Charger and Challenger lines could see a mix of EV power and gas engines, the spokesperson told the outlet, “The brand has only said BEV”. Obviously that leaves Dodge a bit of wiggle room, but we will take these rumours with a grain of salt.]

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If the rumors are true, it’s reasonable to speculate that the inline-six could make somewhere between 300 and 375 horsepower, as those are the output bookends of the existing 3.6L V6 and 5.7L V8. If Stellantis takes the approach of offering it in regular and hybrid forms, there’s nothing to say it won’t appreciate the former at around 350 ponies and the latter in the 425 horsepower range. With such numbers, the same base engine could replace two distinctly different old factories.

Stellantis is of course the mother of it all, as it is not common in the industry to comment on future products. We do know, however, that Dodge is well on its way to developing an all-electric muscle car for introduction in the 2024 calendar year. Could it play alongside these rumored inline-six? We keep our ear to the ground.

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