Definitely, NASCAR is not the same without Dodge. It’s been ten years since the company appeared for the last time. After the title in 2012, things fell apart very quickly. Well, Dodge is not the only company leaving the caravan. Only three big manufacturers are still there. Toyota, Ford and Chevrolet are still fighting at the races. But, the latest speculations say that Dodge Charger could be back again. What a comeback it would be!
Rumors are surrounding the possible return. Where there is smoke, there’s a fire. Plus, bosses didn’t want to either confirm or deny stories about Dodge’s reappearance at NASCAR. Well, the FCA, owner of the brand, has always been mysterious. If we roll back the film, we’ll remember easter eggs when the Ram 1500 was coming out in 2018. The clock on the display was set at 7:07, announcing the arrival of the Hellcat-powered truck. Fans had to wait three years for this to happen. We don’t want to be so patient with the Dodge comeback to NASCAR.
Brief History – Why Dodge Left
NASCAR was the perfect occasion to beef up street vehicles for races. It increased the popularity of the most successful brands and models. For example, one of them is the Dodge Charger. But, street cars are no longer in use in the championship. Safety reasons made the companies build totally new vehicles for the NASCAR. On the other hand, such models can’t be downtuned for the streets.
It lead to higher expenses. So, companies are depending on sponsors and partners. The main associate decided to leave Dodge after a fruitful 2012 season. The company couldn’t find a replacement, and everything fell apart soon after the breakup. Ford did a great job – they hired the title-winning Penske Racing’s team and also killed the competition. Now, FCA and Dodge are ready to strike back. Rumors say that Tony Stewart and his team are ready to leave the Blue Oval company after the contract that expires after the next season.
Next Gen, The Comeback, Electrification
The return of the Dodge caused a lot of other questions. For now, it seems the company is open to the idea, especially after the new format of the NASCAR was introduced. The Next Gen wants to include more carmakers. Pontiac, Buick, and others are not so likely to reappear at NASCAR. The car market is not so popular nowadays, and Dodge Charger is the best bet for the championship. The muscle car survived all the challenges and it is still one of the most popular vehicles at dealerships.
FCA had some developments in progress that include a V8 engine. It seems like a perfect fit for the Dodge Charger and NASCAR. But, the future of the industry is in electrification. It is not possible to race in EVs. Internal combustion is one of the things that make the championship so special. But, one day, we will see the EV racing, without a doubt.
When Will Dodge Come Back to NASCAR? And Who Drives the Charger?
Well, we assume that rumors are true and that Dodge Charger is coming back. There is a lot of discussion in this world and many sources claim the return is just a matter of time. Enthusiasts want to see Dodge already in the 2023 caravan. It is not impossible. The company might be there without big ambitions and with a plan to check the situation and pitch the court for the future. There are no serious teams to join the project in 2023.
After that, Dodge will have more options. For the 2024 season, the company can hire Tony Stewart. It is one of the loudest rumors about NASCAR at the moment. Stewart’s contract with Ford is expiring and Dodge is ready to jump into the negotiations. The reunite with the Team Penske is not so likely, but it would be a dream story. So, even if Dodge comes back to NASCAR in 2023, expect the Charger to be competitive in 2024.
Sources: MOPAR insiders, Motorbiscuit
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