2023 Dodge Hornet SUV Rendered by YouTube Designer: Alfa Romeo Tonale With Durango Face

SUVs now completely dominate new vehicle sales, rugged, practical, and cool-looking. Japanese and Korean automakers have a firm grip on the smaller crossover market, but Dodge is finally doing something about it. Meet the 2023 Dodge Hornet, a new SUV from the brand that basically just makes awesome V8 muscle cars.

Just a couple of days ago, the first spy photos of the 2023 Hornet emerged online. They showed a compact vehicle, quite different from the Durango in terms of the design. Using that information, the famous YouTube car designer TheSketchMonkey has decided to provide us with a rendering.

As far as we know, he’s the first to lift the veil off the 2023 Dodge Hornet. And while his rendering may not prove to be 100% accurate over time, it’s a pretty good glimpse into the future.

The Hornet is badge-engineering at its core. Dodge really did take the Alfa Romeo Tonale, kept most of the bodywork, and just added its own front and rear ends. Of course, it’s not going to be the most beautiful vehicle ever made, and TheSketchMonkey is very critical of the lazy attempt. But the Hornet needs to sell, and it’s not like cars weren’t made like this in the past.

The Photoshop process itself involves pasting a Durango front end over the Tonale and massaging it into place. The headlights receive just enough modifications to match the design we see in the rendering. But I do feel like Mr. Monkey’s grille is a little bit too wide. In the spy photos, it’s about the width of a headlight.

2023 Dodge Hornet: what you need to know

The Hornet is going on sale this year and will slot under the Durango in the Dodge model lineup. It will compete against popular newcomers such as the Kia Seltos, Mazda CX-30 or Volkswagen Taos.

However, with a price ranging from about $30,000 to $40,000 (estimated), it’s going to have the most problems from segment leaders like the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V.

It is predicted that our trim levels will be offered, each with nicer equipment: SXT, GT, R/T and the luxurious Citadel. However, all of them should have the same engine, also shared with the Tonale.

We’re talking about a turbocharged four-cylinder 2.0-liter making 256 horsepower and 295 lb-ft, hooked up to a 9-speed and standard AWD. The Tonale also has a plug-in version, the Veloce PHEV Q4, with a 1.3-liter turbo powering the front end and an electric motor at the rear axle for a combined 272 horsepower.

Some Dodge / Hornet history

The Tonale rides on the same platform as the Jeep Compass and Renegade. And now it’s being transformed into a Dodge. This is funny because Dodge’s other important crossover, the Caliber of the 2000s, was a reskinned Jeep Compass as well.

The last time Dodge tried to resurrect an iconic compact car name, we got the Dart (PF). This four-door sedan was related to the Alfa Romeo Giulietta hatchback and was only produced from 2012 to 2016. They did manage to sell about 330,000 units in the United States, and I expect the Dodge Hornet to do even better because it’s a crossover.



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