Rick Kranz is product editor for Automotive News.
The Dodge Challenger made a comeback, so what's next for Chrysler Group in the retro muscle-car wars?
How about a new Barracuda, sans the Plymouth name?
Chrysler Group is rumored to be developing a 21st century Barracuda to replace the Challenger, according to a story on the Motor Trend Web site.
The car would be smaller and lighter than the Challenger, and it would be built on a rear-wheel-drive platform co-developed by Chrysler and Fiat. Alfa Romeo would share the platform with a wide range of models, according to the story. Today's Challenger shares a platform with the first generation Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger.
The Barracuda's styling would be a far less literal interpretation of its namesake than the Challenger, adopting styling cues instead of the strong retro look found on today's Challenger, the story says.
"That's all speculation. We're looking at a lot of things," said Dan Reid, a Chrysler spokesman.
Plymouth's Barracuda was offered from 1964 to 1974. The version that was a true Mustang and Camaro competitor was produced from 1970-74.
Timing for a new Barracuda is unclear. The restyled, re-engineered Ford Mustang will debut for the 2015 model year, marking that pony car's 50th anniversary. The revamped Chevrolet Camaro is due for similar improvements that same year.
There's no more Plymouth, so would a Barracuda be sold as a Dodge or a Chrysler?
No. The speculation is that SRT, Chrysler's performance brand, is more likely.
The SRT already has one car -- the upcoming, redesigned Viper. Last year the Viper was shifted from Dodge to SRT.