Mere hours after Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) unveiled a host of potent new performance models from Dodge, the automaker has admitted that electrification is the future of performance.
During an interview with Motor1, FCA North America Head of Passenger Cars Tim Kuniskis admitted that electrification will come to the company’s performance models, even though the new Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye, and Dodge Challenger SRT Super Stock have no electrification in sight.
“We’re very interested in electrification, specifically for performance,” Kuniskis said. “I think it is absolutely the future of performance, and it’s what is going to enable performance to exist amid [environmental] regulations. I’m not going to say there’s no way to avoid it, because I’m not looking at it as something we want to avoid. I think it’s going to be the next evolution, the next step of even higher performance than anything that we’ve seen up until this point. It’s going to open up massive capability.”
FCA already has a few electrified vehicles in its portfolio, such as the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and the Fiat 500e. Like most electrified vehicles on the market, these cars are more focused on efficiency than they are performance, but as more automakers start to embrace electrification, it’s inevitable that electric motors will soon start to supplement internal combustion engines in some of the industry’s most powerful vehicles.
However, Kuniskis added that it is not yet economically viable for FCA to go down this route.
“Right now, electrification is not cost-effective. Let’s say you have a trim that you want to make into an awesome electrified performance car, and you’re going to sell 5,000 of them. There’s no way to justify the expense to do that because of the cost of technology. When the cost…comes down across the mainstream, now that opens up the door for the crazies.”
So then what can we expect from future electrified FCA models? Well, seen as how Dodge for example already has cars that put down more than 700 horsepower, it’s possible that sometime in the future, performance FCA products could approach the four-figure horsepower mark.