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Stellantis Has “Disbanded” The Street & Racing Technology (SRT) Division:

Group Will Now Be Able To Work On All Stellantis Vehicles...

Has the Street & Racing Technology (SRT) division been disbanded? Over the past week, several websites have been stating that the newly formed Stellantis group has done just that. While Stellantis itself has been quiet about the ordeal, we decided to reach out to their communications team for a real answer to what is going on.

2021 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye. (Dodge).

“All of the core elements of the SRT performance engineering team have been integrated into our company’s global engineering organization”, a spokeswoman for Stellantis told us. “This action will have the two-way benefit of ensuring that our brands’ SRT and performance-focused product offerings continue to meet the highest quality standards and expectations while delivering key learnings from motorsports and other high-performance-technology applications across a wider mix of our company’s product lines”.

2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat with SRT Black Appearance Package & Redline Stripe. (Dodge).

“These products have delighted enthusiasts for nearly two decades, and Stellantis will continue to sell and develop the next generation of Dodge//SRT-branded vehicles, as well as Jeep® and Ram vehicles that utilize high-performance SRT technology”, the spokeswoman added. 

So it seems that while the SRT team has been disbanded, SRT engineers will now be mixed with performance engineers from the PSA side of Stellantis and both teams will be able to work on high-performance projects across all brands in the Stellantis portfolio. 

2021 Ram 1500 TRX in Hydro Blue. (Ram).

While we said before, that it was likely would see an end to “SRT” branded vehicles outside of the Dodge lineup, it looks like that is the case going forward. Jeep already had announced that it would indeed continue the Trackhawk name throughout its lineup for its track-oriented performance portfolio during Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) Captial Markets Day event back in 2018.

Originally beginning in 1989 as “Team Viper” to develop the iconic Dodge Viper from concept to production, the team merged with “Team Prowler” (the team behind another iconic vehicle – the 1997 Plymouth Prowler) to become Specialty Vehicle Engineering (SVE).

The Car That Started It All – The 1989 Dodge Viper RT/10 Concept. (Dodge).

During the DaimlerChrysler era, SVE became Performance Vehicle Operations (PVO) in January 2002. Then, the Chief Operating Officer of DaimlerChrysler Corporation, Wolfgang Bernhard who had led the performance arm of Mercedes-Benz with AMG, sought to turn SVE into something similar for the Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep brands.

PVO would later go on to become SRT in 2004, as all of the group’s vehicles were carrying the SRT designation.

2003 Dodge Neon SRT-4. (Dodge).

In 2012, Chrysler Group spun SRT into its own premium performance brand with famed Chrysler design Ralph Gilles, leading the brand. The brand was introduced with the launch of the 2013 SRT Viper and oversaw all operations of the SRT performance vehicle lineup, as well as motorsports operations. This would continue until 2014 when SRT was broken up and moved to the Dodge brand portfolio, creating the Dodge//SRT brand which continues day.

2013 SRT Viper GTS in Stryker Red. (SRT).

SRT continued operations with the Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep brands to create vehicles like the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye, 2019 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320, 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody, 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat, and the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX from the three automotive brand’s portfolios.

So what was your favorite SRT-engineered vehicle? Let us know in the comments below or in the MoparInsiders.com forums.

 

Robert S. Miller

Robert S. Miller is a diehard Mopar enthusiast who lives and breathes all that is Mopar. The Michigander is not only a Co-Editor for MoparInsiders.com, 5thGenRams.com, and HDRams.com but an automotive photographer. He is an avid fan of offshore powerboat racing, which he travels the country to take part in.

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Corporate mergers are about consolidation and eliminating overlap and duplication. The end result is usually financial savings, but also the result can be a better organization, from the best talent and practices gleaned from the process. If the performance spirit and focus of our beloved brands continues, is better funded and executed, than this is a good thing. There is a lot of racing and high performance history among the Stellantis brands and that should prosper on paper as a single group. What can be a concern is that a performance group that may be too European thinking, asks with concern, can an All-American performance mindset and chemistry thrive? The Germans never got it, the Italians tried but there was some confusion trans Atlantic. As to the French, who knows? If Dodges returns to NASCAR and Dodge Challengers dominate NHRA Factory Stock competition, good. If not, bad. The jury will be out on this for awhile.

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This story has a familiar ring to it. When Sergio M stepped into Auburn Hills he disbanded the ENVI team. The people involved all were absorbed into the traditional corporate structure.

From 2009:

How dare I compare an EV program with SRT. The products are different, but the strategy of the team development is similar. The Fiat 500e compliance car which happened after the disbanding of the ENVI team used an outsourced powertrain from Bosch. However, the extended range EV prototypes also used vendor sourced powertrains. There was also a battery electric minivan project for the USPS, but Uncle Sam didn't think FCA would survive, so the project cancelled when FCA was turned down.

The SRT team did well during the FCA years. The groups low volume projects for the most part have been money makers, unlike the resource hungry compliance car program. Times have changed. SRT nuked the fridge with the Dodge Challenger Demon. The show continues, but it is the same old story. The Ram TRX is a thirsty public relations risk. It might very well be the next poster child of bad timing. Remember the petrol fueled Hummer and Ford Excursion in 2008? Today Ford has a hybrid F-150 and a battery electric version will soon follow. Ram is out there touting the TRX while ignoring the new political and cultural landscape.

It is better to have traditional muscle to no longer be out front. Stellantis needs some different image cars.

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SRT Division is the best thing that could have happened to Dodge. There real sales has been better than Ram and Jeep. This may have been a big mistake by Stellantis. Maybe they should be looking at Alfa instead.

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Dodge took the charger from a 2-door midsize muscle car in the 60s and 70's to a 2-door economy hatchback in the 80's and now an amazing 4-door muscle car that we know and love today. But I remember a different car dodge took from humble beginnings and made into a monster, the Neon. Dodge took it's stable grocery getter and turned it into the SRT4 neon and did all kinds of things with that little car and then killed the SRT4 name by putting it on the not-even-close Caliber. My point here is, it's time to let go of the traditional muscle cars and lets move into something new, different and better. A Dodge Neon sedan on the Giulia platform with the Quadrifoglio 505hp 2.9L V6 dubbed Daytona and a 425hp 3.0L from Maserati in the R/T would be an amazing and impressive performance vehicle. With styling cues from the Charger blended with some evolutionary cues from the neon would certainly make for a performance car that looks the part. Not to mention it still pays Homage to the history of Mopar performance while moving the brand forward and globalizing it. Give the car that true Dodge feel on the interior along with a muscular exterior and SRT tuned performance parts and performance packs and upgrades. Bring back the Dodge Stealth as a RWD based AWD 2-door high performance coupe with evolutionary styling from the last-gen Stealth and the viper and make it a 4-seater on the Gran-Turismo platform. Return the Chrysler 300 back to the 300M and 300M special built on the same platform as the Maserati Quattroporte and give it the sleek look that it once had while adding real power and performance and even hybrid technology. Put the Durango on the Levante platform and give it the 425hp 3.0L and the 505hp 2.9L V6 engines and go from there. By spreading the SRT brand into the rest of Stellantis, it allows the brand to add performance everywhere and incorporate the best of every brand into every brand. It's time to pull out of the 60's and 70's and do something newer.

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I wonder what Dodge's high performance trims will be called, and how it will be designed and engineered.

Maserati has Trofeo, and Alfa has QV. and I'd be wondering if these models are designed and engineered by the same team who design and engineer the regular models or do they have special skunk team.

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