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6.2 Hellcat: serious power boost

Allpar sources are claiming that the “Hellcat” Hemi coming up in the next year or two, the supercharged 6.2 V-8 engine to be built alongside the 5.7 and SRT 6.4, will boast a serious power boost, with 550-640 horsepower expected.

There has been no word yet on what technologies the new engine will bring, other than a supercharger, which will also help high-altitude acceleration for those thrilling mountain chases. Its first use is expected to be in a relaunched 2015 Dodge Challenger, on the new LA platform (which was originally to spawn an SRT Barracuda), released sometime next year — Chrysler’s usually optimistic schedule has an unveiling in March 2014, with reliable source oh2o marking down July 2014 as the production start date.  The SRT Barracuda might still end up with the 6.2, but Barracuda will not be based on the “L” cars.

One of the primary goals of the LA platform is to allow Challenger to finally use the hot eight-speed automatic already in the Grand Cherokee, Durango, 300, and Charger; the company’s most sporty mainstream car currently remains somewhat hindered by a five-speed automatic. Ralph Gilles has been quoted as saying that the Challenger would get major changes inside and out, which may annoy prospective buyers who love the car’s exterior looks, but want something more inside (and that eight-speed). It will almost certainly get the next-generation electronics — UConnect 2, Cross Path detection, enhanced parking assistance, UConnect via Mobile, automatic tweets from various car parts to other parts (@FrontCamera: get a load of that bumper sticker!), and whatever else can be shoved in without making the car uncontrollable.

Even as the 6.4 Hemi gets a more powerful companion in the 6.2, oh2o believes it will spawn a less powerful, heavy-duty unit for the Ram Heavy Duty pickup; while the 6.4 truck engine is not expected to be a big seller, it will drop the price of the entry-level Ram HD and make it easier to compete against Ford and Chevy.

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