We first got wind of the supercharged 6.2L “Hellcat” Hemi last fall when we saw a masked Challenger with a blower under the hood. We expected to see this car at the Detroit International Auto Show, but it didn’t make its debut there. Then there were a couple of masked Chargers cruising through the streets, and there were questions about the video and whether the Hellcat Hemi would find its way into the four-door Charger models, too.
Then we heard a rumor from some of our friends that at the Spring Festival of LXs we would be treated to a very important and special surprise. Was it going to be the official debut of the Hellcat Hemi? We decided to head out to Irvine, California, to see for ourselves. But as the saying goes: all we got was a T-shirt.
This morning, however, we made another visit to the SRT website (SRT will fold back into Dodge soon) and we find a new, 2015 SRT Hellcat Hemi Challenger. As we looked around, there we found some very interesting bits and pieces that we weren’t aware of. For example, this was posted to SRT, a quote from Mark Trostle, Head of Design for SRT, Mopar and Motorsports: “The driver’s side parking lamp was deleted to enable an Air Catcher cold-air intake, helping the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI® deliver ‘class-by-itself’ horsepower and torque.” We love the idea that SRT has taken this approach to get more air to the supercharger, it’s been done before, but usually never by a manufacturer.
Behind the Hellcat Hemi, transmission choices include the Tremec 6-speed manual or the HP90 8-speed automatic. The clutch for the Tremec is a larger, high-capacity clutch, that SRT says is a little bit Viper. Braking is done with massive 15.4-inch two-piece Brembo rotors up front, and the suspension offers up three settings: Track, Sport, and Street to help dial in those corners or to make the Hellcat a little more tame on the way to take the kids to school – and they won’t ask you to drop them off a block ahead.
The interior looks more like a cockpit, with a sweeping console and highly visible digital gauges that offer up a video arcade of functions and features. It might take a while to read and comprehend all of the functions from what we’ve seen, but once you learn everything that the instrument cluster can provide, hopefully you’ll want to keep your eyes more on the road ahead.
The instrumentation provides 125 customizable configurations, so if you happen to hand over the keys to someone else to drive, they can configure their own settings. A red key is the one you’ll want to unleash that horsepower, the black key is a little more reserved for daily driving. The red-lit gauges are driver-centric and are unique to the Challenger. The high bolster on the seats will hold you in the turns, but are comfortable enough to drive every day.
On the outside, you have eleven colors to choose from to complement the black, black/ruby red, or sepia interior. Yes, the Hellcat is going to be available in Sublime Metallic, B5 Blue, Tori Red, among the other eight color choices, all of which will look great as a backdrop to the “SUPERCHARGED” emblems on the front fenders.
The Hellcat Hemi is Mopar’s answer to the modern Mustang GT500 and Camaro ZL1, each sporting superchargers under the hood. And for Mopar fanatics everywhere, the resounding response to SRT’s supercharged bombshell was, “it’s about time!” SRT CEO Ralph Gilles wanted this 2015 model to make its presence known this year, and with the announced debut to be in August, it’s become apparent that SRT and Mopar are still in the game. And they are in this game with a trump card of their own to give Mustang and Camaro owners some serious competition.
The 6.2 liter Hellcat Hemi is indeed supercharged, and was originally aimed at spinning the crankshaft in the neighborhood of 700 horsepower, with roughly 650 lb-ft of torque. The high-efficiency twin-screw supercharger promises lots of boost to the unique block designed specifically for the Hellcat to handle extreme conditions.
The aluminum cylinder heads were also designed for this build to flow massive amounts of air, and the bottom end is no slouch with hot forged pistons and rods spun by a uniquely designed forged crankshaft. The low restriction intake and exhaust were implemented to handle the most horsepower that Chrysler has ever produced in a production vehicle.
Of course, they don’t exactly tell us how much horsepower and torque is delivered, but you can be sure that they pulled out all the stops, and that this Hellcat is aimed to give the Mustang and Camaro a run for their money. Check out the SRT website and all the new information that is now available. It’s about time, and we’re glad to see SRT pull this one off, we can’t wait to see it in person, can you?