Dodge will announce its return to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series later this week, after years away. A high-ranking official with Front Row Motorsports stated, on the condition of anonymity, that they will be one of the first teams to race the new 2021 Dodge Charger. The team has two drivers in their lineup for this year: Ryan Newman and Michael McDowell.
Newman won three championships in a Charger, while McDowell is no stranger to victory lanes either with four wins under his belt. This partnership should bring plenty of excitement into the season since it will be interesting to see how these two drivers get along. They have different styles of driving which should make for some great racing.
When Dodge returned to Nascar in 2001, they brought a factory-backed team called Morgan-McClure with them. That team ended up winning five races during the season and claiming the Manufacturer's Championship. Since then, Dodge has only had two other seasons where they finished in the top 10 in points, with their best year coming in 2003 when they finished third in the standings.
After missing out on the playoffs last year for the first time since 2001, Dodge decided to bring back their championship-winning program and will have two full-time entries competing for the win this year.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame will make the formal announcement on Thursday.
The automaker last competed in the series in 2004 when it withdrew after 35 seasons due to declining sales and market share. Since then, Ford has owned Dodge, which has prevented the company from returning to NASCAR. But that may be about to change.
A senior executive with knowledge of the situation told Reuters that Dodge is expected to announce its return to NASCAR later this week. The official announcement will come at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Thursday.
When Dodge returned to NASCAR in 1994, it brought two cars to the race track: One driven by Rick Hendrick's friend Ron Hornaday, Jr., and one driven by Joe Amick. Hornaday would go on to win the first three races of the season before an accident in late March forced him to miss the rest of the year. His teammate Amick finished second in the points standings.
Dodge returned to NASCAR again in 1997, this time with Richard Childress Racing. They brought two more cars to the race track: One driven by Mark Martin and one driven by Andy Houston.
Dodge has previously announced that it is thinking about returning to NASCAR. Despite constructing a Gen-6 vehicle, Dodge exited the competition following Brad Keselowski's 2012 victory. The American carmaker withdrew its funding after failing to locate a marquee team to replace Penske Racing.
However, now that Chrysler has been rescued by Fiat Group, there might be a chance of Dodge returning to Nascar. A source told ESPN that there are talks between Chrysler and some teams about bringing back Dodge as a sponsor. There is also a proposal to have an entrant that does not already have a contract for the next season.
If these rumors turn out to be true, then we could see a return of Dodge to Nascar in 2014. But since there are only eight spots available on the grid, this doesn't mean much at first glance.
Yes, very much, for 2013, despite the expense in creating the new-for-2013 Charger race vehicle. It's feasible that some residual Dodge products may race in a NASCAR or ARCA-sanctioned series in 2013. However, it would not be expected that they would do so regularly.
The 2012 model year saw the end of production of the Dodge Challenger SRT8 that had been used by Dodge's top team in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. The Challenger SRT8 was replaced by the all-new 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8 during the 2012 season. As well, there were plans to replace the Magnum with a new product for 2014, but this plan was cancelled due to poor sales.
In 2015, a new Challenger will appear with more than 300 horsepower from its Hellcat muscle car engine. And in 2017, a new Durango will arrive with three rows of seating and two spare tires inside its trunk.
As a result, the 2013 Dodge Charger stock vehicle was unveiled at Las Vegas Motor Speedway barely a week and a half after Penske announced the move to Ford. Dodge now has a squad to carry the brand forward into the upcoming season. The 2013 Dodge Charger Cup Car's mission (Dodge). It is driven by Ryan Ellis with assistance from Mike Bliss and Steve Park.
The 2012 season was the first for the Dodge Charger in the series. It began the season with Hendrick Motorsports and Rick Hendrick as its drivers. After one race, Rick Hendrick dropped out of the championship due to personal reasons. He was replaced by John Andretti for three races before he too withdrew from the series due to personal issues. Andretti was replaced by Paul Menard who stayed with the team for the rest of the season. The team finished fourth in the point standings.
For 2013, Dodge returned to NASCAR with Ryan Ellis driving the #9 AdvoCare Racing Dodge. He is joined by Mike Bliss and Steve Park.
This marks the second time that Ryan Ellis has driven a Dodge in the series. He last drove a Charger in 2010 where he finished 21st in the points. Before that, he drove a 2009 Challenger for Richard Childress Racing. That year, he finished 12th in the points.
There are some changes for the 2013 season including new teams and manufacturers.
While a replacement for the Dodge Journey is rumored to be in the works, it has yet to be officially announced. When the current Journey is phased out after this year, it will leave two performance cars, the Challenger Coupe and Charger Sedan, as well as one sport utility vehicle (SUV), the Durango, in the dust. Neither of the two remaining vehicles are expected to last more than another year or two before being replaced.
Early predictions have said that when the Journey is gone, a new entry-level SUV will be launched at the same time as a more premium model. However, no official announcements have been made by either company regarding any changes for 2021.
For now, we can only hope that the next generation Journey is better than what we have today. The current model was introduced in 2015 and although it does offer several modern features, it isn't considered one of the most efficient small crossovers on the market. Its biggest problem might be its name, since it doesn't appeal to anyone who likes trucks. Perhaps if they changed the name there would be more demand for it.
Anyways, these are my thoughts on what will replace the Dodge Journey in 2021. Let me know what you think in the comments below!