On a call recently, Dodge brand CEO Tim Kuniskis reminded us that the Charger Daytona is just a “concept.” We’d argue that it’s much closer to a final production car than the company wants to publicly admit. More proof? We now have some performance information on some of the models.
As you learned during the Dodge Speed Week reveal of the Charger Daytona Banshee, there would be three different versions of the Charger Daytona.
Two of the cars would be on a 400-volt architecture, while the top tier Banshee trim would rock cutting-edge 800-volt power.
We also learned that through Direct Connection, there’d be two additional software-unlock power upgrades for each trim level.
Just in time for the 2022 SEMA Show, Kuniskis and team released horsepower numbers for the two non-SRT variants.
Note: All Charger Daytona models will be all-wheel drive.
The base trim will be badged, we think, as the Charger Daytona 340. The 340 stands for the kW output of the electric motors. Our own Craig Cole recently explained what a kW is in our EV Basics series.
The Charger Daytona 340 will have, as a base car, 455 hp. The two performance upgrades are 370 kW and 400 kW. That’s 495 hp and 535 hp, respectively.
The next Charger Daytona trim is the Charger Daytona 440. That car will have 590 hp. The two Direct Connection upgrades from that car will push to 470 kW and 500 kW. Again, that’s 630 hp and 670 hp, respectively.
That’s a ton of horsepower before we even begin talking about the SRT Banshee. And we won’t talk about it, yet, because Dodge isn’t providing that information yet.
We should note that the Charger Daytona is likely a heavy car, even though it is being built on the new STLA Large platform. Batteries aren’t lightweight, and the packs will likely be the heaviest parts of the cars.
Additionally, we have some more information on the Direct Connection upgrades.
The Direct Connection upgrades are software unlocks (no additional hardware is added). They are purchased over-the-air and are registered to the VIN of the vehicle.
Direct Connection also ships the customer something called a Crystal Key that attaches to the dash. With the software update installed, and the Key activated, the upgraded power becomes available.
Since the software updates are linked to the VIN, they transfer with the car when the owner sells the car. Dodge is very clear on that. It will be interesting, however, to see what Dodge does with cars with the upgrades that are traded in. Will it deactivate the Direct Connection upgrades or will it stay on? We assume it’ll stay on, but will try to get clarification.
During that before mentioned call, Kuniskis did address concerns about Dodge, with Direct Connection, locking out aftermarket tuners and collecting the money for the company.
“The aftermarket isn’t going anywhere,” he said. “They’ve always adapted to the change in our industry.”
What we do know is there’s a lot happening quickly in the world of EV performance, and we eagerly look forward to seeing the production version of the Charger Daytona and drive the ridiculous Banshee.