Dodge has revealed the first electrified vehicle to join its portfolio of soon-to-be axed V8 muscle cars, the Hornet compact utility vehicle (CUV).
Starting with looks, the new plug-in hybrid (PHEV) model may appear somewhat familiar to you. That’s because the Hornet is a restyled version of the Alfa Romeo Tonale which parent company Stellantis also produces.
In keeping with the American brand’s distinctive styling though, Dodge has given the Hornet a “mail slot” style front grille as seen on models like the Charger sedan. The brand says it gives the CUV a performance-focussed appearance to match its electrified heart.
Looking at the vehicle from the side, it’s clear to see its Tonale roots in the form of its body lines and rear pillar. However, a new rear tail lamp stretches across the width of the body complete with Dodge’s Rhombi logo placed in the centre.
Inside, the Hornet adopts the Tonale’s driver-focussed interior with controls subtly “tipped” towards the driver. This includes a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Dodge says the Hornet is the most powerful utility vehicle one can buy for under $30,000 ($NZ47,277) in the US. It’s no V8 but the Hornet still manages 213kW and 519Nm from its petrol hybrid powertrain.
The R/T variant comes with a 1.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder adopted from the Stellantis Global Small Engine (GSE) family and is combined with a 90kW electric motor powered by a 15.5kWh battery pack. That allows the CUV to accelerate from 0 to 100km/h in 6.1 seconds.
One trick feature found on the R/T is its PowerShot feature, giving the electric motor an extra 18kW for 15-seconds of more power. Three driving modes can be selected including hybrid, electric and e-save mode to preserve battery charge.
The Hornet GT model features a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder providing the driver with 197kW and 400Nm at their disposal, mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission.
Both powertrains come with all-wheel drive as standard.
Koni suspension handles the Hornet’s driving dynamics while optional adjustable dampers and Brembo front brake calipers can be fitted alongside a torque vectoring system.
The Dodge Hornet won’t be sold in New Zealand but its Alfa Romeo Tonale sibling will be from next year.